Guest Essays
Epitaph

American Iliad: 30 Seconds in Tombstone

What really happened in Tombstone, Arizona on the fateful afternoon of October 26, 1881? Epitaph: A Novel of the O.K. Corral author Mary Doria Russell debunks five common myths, misconceptions, and misrepresentations of the iconic gunfight of the Wild West.

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Hausfrau

There's Good Reason to Love Bad Women

Book hangover. Readers, you know what I'm referring to. The condition where you read something so good that you have trouble getting into anything else for a while, and even when you do, you're comparing it to 'that book.' I am still experiencing this a couple months after reading...

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ExplainWorld

Observation in Retrograde: Tracing the Origins of Modern Science

Nobel Prize-winning physicist Steven Weinberg’s To Explain the World thoughtfully guides readers through the history of scientific process, with its centuries of trial and error, dead ends and successes, and, above all, the perseverance and curiosity that has shaped the ways that we observe and understand the world around us.

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HoldMeCloser225

YA Wednesday: The Musical Stylings of David Levithan

Authors and song writers are really two of a kind, and music often finds it's way into novels as a means of giving readers insight into characters or as a prelude to the start of a new chapter. With "Hold Me Closer: The Tiny Cooper Story," David Levithan is both author and song writer of this novel-as-musical...

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Reunion

"Saving Clara" - by Judith Claire Mitchell

"In the absence of biography, I began the work of the novelist, creating a fictional character based on what little I knew of her. But then a funny thing happened. Whenever I stopped writing to do a little research, I’d discover another, then another new article about her." - Judith Claire Mitchell

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UnlikelyHeroCrop

YA Wednesday: If You Were a Superhero...

Last week I told you a little bit about my favorite YA book this month, "The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B," but one of the things I didn't mention is how Batman and Robin, Thor, and Wonder Woman fit in...

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Bettyville

A Place to Hold Your Life: George Hodgman on Memoirs and "Bettyville"

Our spotlight pick for Best of the Month this month is George Hodgman's humorous and affecting memoir, Bettyville, which documents his unintended, and indeterminate tenure as a caregiver to his aging mother. It also, as Hodgman explains here...

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A Small Indiscretion

A Chance to Recover a Lost Destiny: Jan Ellison on "A Small Indiscretion"

A Small Indiscretion is a novel about one lost period in a young woman’s life. It’s part thriller, and part critical-and-nostalgic look back at youth, from a first-time novelist. Here’s Ellison’s exclusive essay on how she came to write the book...

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Interstellar05

Straight on Till Morning: Iconic Images from the Voyager Missions

I was too young to remember the moon missions. By the mid-1970s, the country had overcome its zeal for space exploration, leaving grainy tape of Apollo-Soyuz and Evel Knievel rocket bikes as sorry substitutes for a generation of Star Trek-addled brains yearning to go where no one had gone before.

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I_Was_Here_225

YA Wednesday: Guest Essay from Gayle Forman

For many YA readers a new book by Gayle Forman is cause for celebration and now the film adaptation of If I Stay has introduced her to an even wider audience...

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