Discover a new way to find and share stories you'll love… Learn about Reading Desk

All Blogs / Entertainment / Books / New

Review: Outlander Episode One

by Amanda As Carrie mentioned from her travels to San Diego Comic Con, the SBTB posse will be doing recaps and commentary of the highly publicized Outlander Starz series. Seriously, I've seen ads for it everywhere. Last time I checked,...Show More Summary

Writing Indifferently

How was Charlotte Brontë at 8? According to her school reports, she “‘[wrote] indifferently’ and ‘[knew] nothing of grammar, geography, history, or accomplishments”. Of course, she went on to write Jane Eyre, and as The Guardian points out, many a famous writer received middling reports in school, so maybe there’s hope for other “indifferent’ writers.

New Novel, New Excerpt

Darcey Steinke has a new novel, Sister Golden Hair, coming out this fall, and Granta has an excerpt available online. For more about Steinke, be sure to read Lydia Millet‘s praise for her early novel, Jesus Saves.

Enigmatic, Disturbing Sirens

Marina Warner reviews the “enigmatic and brief” and somewhat disturbing “The Professor and the Siren” for The Paris Review. As luck would have it, our own Sonya Chung reviewed the same story for The Millions.

The Bitch in My Book

I didn't have any conscious intentions for the kind of protagonist Marjorie would be. She indulged every bad instinct. And it was glorious.

‘The Knick’ Recap: Into an Electrified Light

Steven Soderbergh likes the dark, at least for this show.

THELONIOUS RISING Is a Story of Boy VS Hurricane

Book Review Jackie K Cooper THELONIOUS RISING by Judith Richards When novelist Judith Richards decided to write a story about a young boy caught up in the storm named Hurricane Katrina, she faced the task of getting it pitch perfect right. Show More Summary

"Crusty Pandy" and the Art of Modern Taxidermy

There is something going on. Four years ago, we selected Still Life: Adventures in Taxidermy as a Best Book of the Month for March 2010. I quote myself: "[Still Life] will tell most readers as much as they need to...

The Metamodernist Manifesto: After Postmodernism (Part I)

{Below is Part I of the second in a series of articles exploring the basic principles of a sphere of thought within metamodernism, "transcendent metamodernism." Other spheres of thought under the general heading of this cultural paradigm...Show More Summary

How Robin Williams Inspired Kids to Become Teachers...or Just Drop Out and Join a Band

As a teacher, there are metaphorical life lessons you probably shouldn't impart on your students. For example, author Peter DeVries once offered the storied advice: "Write drunk and revise sober." Not exactly bulletin board material. Though...Show More Summary

The Giver -- A Future that Evokes a Cinematic Past

The opening of The Giver invites us into an ordered black-and-white world, peaceful but devoid of color. Compared to the images of carnage prevalent on our TV news, this polite, monochrome, homogenized society can seem seductive. But...Show More Summary

“Keep Arguing”

There are plenty of good reasons to read classic literature, but Mary Beard reminds us that there’s a different kind of classic that’s worth revisiting and questioning. “You do the ancient world much greater service if you keep arguing with them.”

Oxford Dictionary Recognizes: YOLO, Amazeballs and Hot Mess

The online dictionary added new terms inspired by popular culture and online usage.

On the Books: Orwell estate swings back at Amazon

Bill Hamilton, literary executor of George Orwell’s estate, penned a scathing letter to the editor  in yesterday’s New York Times criticizing

“Characters are Ciphers”

Peter Mendelsund writes for the Paris Review about how we see, or think we see, fictional characters. “Characters are ciphers. … We are ever reviewing and reconsidering our mental portraits of characters in novels: amending them, backtracking to check on them, updating them when new information arises.”

How the World Sees You

We are all hungry to know what others think of us. These days we are even more in need of feedback, though typically it's a virtual "like" here or a "heart" there, but author Sally Hogshead thinks we need to pay more attention to how the world sees each of us. Show More Summary

10 Best Lois Lowry: Classics From the Reigning Queen of YA

Okay, so we admit the trailer looks pretty impressive, but while you're standing in line to see yet another fabulous performance by Her Majesty Meryl Streep, we suggest refreshing your memory on why Lois Lowry's classic dystopian YA novel became an international bestseller in the first place. Show More Summary


It's summer reading time for The Buddha Diaries. I just finished this (mostly) entertaining mystery novel by Joel Dicker... Imagine you're doing a jig-saw puzzle. Do you do jig-saws? I enjoy the challenge but they eat up so much time that I rarely allow myself the pleasure, except around Christmas. Show More Summary

What We’re Reading Now: “We Are Not Ourselves” by Matthew Thomas

If you took a stroll around the EW offices, you’ll see a curious brick of a book on all our


“The most interesting writers we know, all asking and answering the same question: why can’t we stop watching cat videos?” Coffee House Press one-ups all boring Kickstarter campaigns with Catstarter, a campaign to fund a book on cat videos and “how we decide what is good or bad art, or art at all.”

Copyright © 2011 Regator, LLC