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How to be pretty in 1974

All You Need to Know About Health & Beauty Marshall Cavendish Publications Ltd. 1974 Another relic from the 1970s. You can be beautiful with all these helpful beauty and fashion tips. There are even recipes to help you stay beautiful and healthy! I know I would have wanted to borrow this book as a teen […]

On “Reading to Impress Yourself”

Rebecca Mead writes for The New Yorker about “The Pleasure of Reading to Impress Yourself” and the false divide between books “we read because we want to and those we read because we have to.”

Amazon Music Book Club: Gym Class Heroes’ Travie McCoy on Self-Help Books & Graphic Novels

Thanks to our friends at the Amazon Music Notes blog for this "Book Club" Q&A with Travie McCoy, frontman for Gym Class Heroes, discussing self-help books and graphic novels. Amazon Music Book Club explores the literary influences on today's musicians....

Hemingway for Hotels: The Ritz-Carlton’s Flash Fiction Ads

In Culture Trust 2.0, we’re all Don Draper, and we’re all susceptible to his slick salesmanship.

The Rumpus Interview with Dani Shapiro

Author Dani Shapiro talks about her latest book, Still Writing, MFA vs. NYC vs. life in bucolic CT, and the lure of Internet.

Primer: A guide to the weird words and worlds of China Miéville

Primer is The A.V. Club’s ongoing series of beginner’s guides to pop culture’s most notable subjects: filmmakers, music styles, literary genres, and whatever else interests us—and hopefully you. This installment: science fiction and fantasy author China Miéville. Show More Summary

YA Wednesday: A Picture is Worth...

When I heard the premise of The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone I was intrigued. I figured it would be really good or really bad with not much wiggle room in between. So I sat down to read a chapter...

On the Books: Christian bookseller pulls celebrity pastor’s titles

The nation’s second-largest Christian-book retailer, LifeWay, has removed from its shelves and website all works by prominent pastor Mark Driscoll. The

YA Wednesday Sneak Peak: New Maze Runner Movie Trailer

The Maze Runner movie is coming out next month (in theaters 9/19) and I'm already bugging the publisher to see if there are going to be any early screenings here in Seattle. From the trailers I've seen, and early buzz,...

Rewriting the Rules with Author Elissa Washuta

Elissa Washuta is white and Native, bipolar, and lost her virginity to rape. Her first book, My Body is a Book of Rules, is a modern coming-of-age memoir that reaches into these tangles of the body and mind through American pop culture. Show More Summary

Smiles to tears

Writers of facial stage direction, beware: it is not actually the epitome of irony that smiling and crying can seem so oddly similar. At Aeon, Princeton professor Michael Graziono argues that the seemingly opposite gestures may just share evolutionary origins. (Pair with: Darwinist theories about “the evolution of the novel.”)

Paul Burston's Polari, the Most Exciting Literary Movement in London

Paul Burston (photo by Krystyna FitzGerald-Morris) Literary events usually have a tedious quality. No matter how brilliant the writer, no matter how hyped the event, there's always an air of forced enthusiasm about the whole enterprise. Show More Summary

If Only I could Find the Time to Write

I would write more if I could quit my day job. I would write more if I had a million dollars. I would write more if I had my own office. I would write more if I had some quiet time away from the kids. I would write more if I took a vacation. Show More Summary

Stop reading this immediately

“Internet reading takes up my time without my setting that time aside for it, and fills me with images and thoughts that I don’t perceive going in, like radiation… In these online minutes or hours, I drift along with my mouth open, absorbing whatever’s floating by, never chewing or even swallowing, just letting it all […]

Wonder Woman arrives in Gotham in DC’s ‘Sensation Comics’

On Wednesday, DC Comics will release Sensation Comics, a Wonder Woman anthology that exists outside the New52 Continuity, the next step in

4 Extraordinary Literary Women Who Redefined Feminine Perfection

Like many young women, I struggle with the constant desire to be "perfect," mentally and physically. It can be so hard to follow advice to find joy in the here and now and so easy to instead be weighed down by imperfection. Reading,Show More Summary

Wonder Woman Breaks Down Digital Barrier in New 'Sensation Comics #1'

When the unthinkable happens -- Batman is taken out of commission by Gotham City's nastiest villains -- who do you call? Well, none other than DC Comics' star-spangled, gold-bangled princess herself, Wonder Woman, to kick off a new digital-first comic book, "Sensation Comics," which hits digital shelves Wednesday, Aug. Show More Summary

Meta-spoilers contained within

“To read something before it is accessible to all is both a privilege and an unfair advantage.” Je Banach’s notes on keeping the secrets of the books she writes about (e.g., Haruki Murakami’s Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage) are thoughtful, poignant, and tantalizingly spoiler-free.

A Little Night Music: On Marie-Helene Bertino’s 2 A.M. at the Cat’s Pajamas

Is it possible for a group of characters to be too charismatic? If so, that was my only real objection to Bertino’s novel.

Bookcase Wednesday

This wobbly-looking bookcase is Quake. Designed by Antoine Phelouzat for Eno Studio, it's a modular, stackable shelf system made of sturdy wooden planks and asymmetrical metal cubes. The result is minimalist, ubermodern shelving that looks like nothing else out there — and would be a deathtrap for clumsy people like me. Show More Summary

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