This Tuesday, The New York Review of Books celebrated its 50th anniversary at Town Hall with appearances from longtime, as well as recent, contributors Daniel Mendelsohn, Joan Didion, Darrly Pinckney, and Michael Chabon. While The Review has been criticized in some literary circles for publishing “unsurprising” political articles, many of the readings that took place Tuesday “struck deeply personal notes,” including Chabon’s recounting of writing his first novel and Pinckney’s description of his relationship to the work of James Baldwin. [The New York Times] (more…)
“I learn things when people write intelligently about my books. That’s what you want as a writer, you want to be taken seriously and you want to be read intelligently. You can learn from an intelligent review—not necessarily a ‘positive’ review.”
Waiting for the Barbarians , the latest collection of essays by Daniel Mendelsohn, covers a broad swatch of the writer’s critical territory. Having established both his contemporary voice and classical eye over the past twenty years, Mendelsohn presents many of his recent thoughtful and brow-raising critiques in this single volume published by The New York Review Books—dissecting the nostalgia that vaulted Mad Men into the sphere of cultural phenomenon, chronicling the hubris that felled Julie Taymor’s tenure at the helm of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, and sectioning these selections under the headings “Spectacles, ” “Classica,” “Creative Writing, ” and “Private Lives.” (more…)
In his personal essay, “John Cheever Turns 100″, Lambda Award-winning author Allan Gurganus reminisces about his time at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop where John Cheever became his close friend and mentor. From his first step into Cheever’s classroom to their reunion years later in New York, Gurganus tells the story of an intimate, caring friendship—revealing both Cheever’s charms and flaws, his genius and his downfalls, the magic of his stories, and his grace as a teacher.
LGBT bibliophiles will recognize New York Review Books (NYRB) Classics as the press that could—but doesn’t—boast about its impressive catalogue of LGBT-interest titles. Edwin Frank founded the press in 1999 as the publishing house of The New York Review of Books and serves as the imprint’s Editorial Director. (more…)