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Yo, Jonny! The Love Song of Jonny Valentine

Sometime after becoming a YouTube megastar and crashing into the cult of personality that has metastasized in contemporary society, Teddy Wayne's 11-year-old bubblegum idol Jonny Valentine is hanging out in his dressing room getting a blow job from a g

By SHARON STEEL  |  February 08, 2013
TheSilentHistory_list

Fiction for the digital age

Matthew Derby and Max Winter will have some explaining to do before their reading at the Dirt Palace August 9.
Letters
By PHILIP EIL  |  August 03, 2012
Review:TheWalkingDead

Review: The Walking Dead: Episode 1

Halfway between a traditional point-and-click adventure game and a Heavy Rain -style interactive fiction, the central aim of The Walking Dead is to put players in impossible situations with no good outcome.
Dead reckoning
By MITCH KRPATA  |  June 02, 2012
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A future less dour

Neal Stephenson's novels have been called everything from science fiction to postcyberpunk.
Looking Ahead
By DAVID SCHARFENBERG  |  May 25, 2012
The Rum Diary

Review: The Rum Diary

It's neat seeing Depp, more than a decade after his balding Raoul Duke in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas , as the younger Hunter S. Thompson, softening mannerisms later made brittle with cocaine, even if the performance is all surface.
Depp as the younger Hunter S. Thompson
By ANN LEWINSON  |  October 28, 2011
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The hipster Harry Potter

The inside flap of Wildwood — the new young-adult fantasy novel by Decemberist Colin Meloy — claims that the book is for ages nine and up.
Colin Meloy’s fake children’s book isn’t for children at all
By CHRIS BRAIOTTA  |  September 23, 2011


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Young Adulteration

In the late 1980s, when I was nine or 10, my mom bought me my own copy of A First Dictionary of Cultural Literacy: What Our Children Need To Know .
Kid lit, cultural literacy, and the rise of books that are fun to read
By EUGENIA WILLIAMSON  |  September 23, 2011
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In his new graphic novel, Craig Thompson wins an argument with God

This book is a gorgeous object; to make it, Thompson apparently covered himself in honey and rolled around in a thousand years of Arabic calligraphy and Islamic art, and the result is breathtaking — the amount of ink expended on one resplendent panel aft
Illuminated manuscript
By S.I. ROSENBAUM  |  September 02, 2011
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Busy Monsters

STUNNED BY LOVE and some would say stupid from too much sex, I decided I had to drive down South to kill a man.
Chapter 1, excerpted from the novel by William Giraldi
By WILLIAM GIRALDI  |  July 22, 2011
night circus, book cover

The Night Circus

The man billed as Prospero the Enchanter receives a fair amount of correspondence via the theater office, but this is the first envelope addressed to him that contains a suicide note, and it is also the first to arrive carefully pinned to the coat of a
Excerpted from the novel by Erin Morgenstern
By ERIN MORGENSTERN  |  July 22, 2011
oracle engine eyeball flame

The Oracle Engine

The lizard of the wasteland, so dazzling to the eye, so rapid to flee or to strike, may grow to its full maturity only in the most brutal of deserts, where no dew falls to drink and where the sun is unrelenting. So, some say, was Marcus Furius Medullinu
Excerpted from the short story by M.T. Anderson
By M.T. ANDERSON  |  July 22, 2011


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All good things must come to an end

Gayle looked up at Oprah from the cool stone floor. This idea struck her as . . . mostly bad.
My favorite things
By JOE KEOHANE  |  May 20, 2011
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Four questions for a hypertext pioneer

As both an author and illustrator, Shelley Jackson has looked beyond the limitations of singular genres or techniques to create a novel style of work.
Links
By DANIEL MCGOWAN  |  December 10, 2010
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Further adventures in literary obsession and authenticity with Brock Clarke

Reviewing Brock Clarke's last novel, An Arsonist's Guide to Writers' Homes in New England (Algonquin), three years ago — before the author moved to Portland, started teaching at Bowdoin College, and released his new book, Exley , which he'll read at
Idolatry in Watertown
By CHRISTOPHER GRAY  |  October 15, 2010
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Crystal Castles | Crystal Castles (2010)

The battlefield of ’00s electro-tantrum spazz-ravers is littered with the corpses of those who burned too brightly at the outset and, in the process, burned out any interest in a sustained career of noisemaking.
Fiction (2010)
By DANIEL BROCKMAN  |  May 21, 2010
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Hearts of glass

In Ali Shaw’s debut novel, death by glass becomes a star-crossed love story in the vein of a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale — a tragedy that strips away its isolated characters’ fears and defenses and reveals their bravery.
Ali Shaw’s modern fairy tale
By SHARON STEEL  |  April 09, 2010


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Booking it

Spring fiction goes international, starting with a whiff of the Caribbean.
Fiction, non-fiction, poetry
By BARBARA HOFFERT  |  March 12, 2010
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Excerpt: Evening’s Empire by BIll Flanagan

In this chapter, "The Drugs Don't Work," aging rock star Emerson Cutler and his manager, Jack Flynn, are seeking inspiration — and desperately trying to jumpstart his career.
An excerpt from Bill Flanagan’s new novel, Evening’s Empire , the true story of a band that never existed
By BILL FLANAGAN  |  February 05, 2010
1001_bloom_list

God of love

Amy Bloom is known for her psychological acuity, especially as it bears on the subject of love. In her new collection, Where the God of Love Hangs Out , her characters — often very knowing — are nonetheless surprised by the undertow.
Amy Bloom once more into the breach
By SUSAN CHAMANDY  |  January 22, 2010
1001_bloom_list

God of love

Amy Bloom is known for her psychological acuity, especially as it bears on the subject of love. In her new collection, Where the God of Love Hangs Out , her characters — often very knowing — are nonetheless surprised by the undertow.
Amy Bloom once more into the breach
By SUSAN CHAMANDY  |  January 22, 2010
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Undercover

Ana Grey is the fearless heroine of April Smith's dark and thoughtful thriller series. But reading these fast-paced books shows the question to be more complicated. Ana Grey is, after all, not only a brave FBI agent, but also the cowering daughter of a
April Smith's mystery/thrillers delve in darkness
By CLEA SIMON  |  June 12, 2009


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Asta in the Wings

Jan Elizabeth Watson was reluctant, at first, to set her dreamy first novel in Maine, afraid of marginalizing herself as a "Maine writer."
Youth view told in an adult voice
By NINA MACLAUGHLIN  |  January 28, 2009
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Water Dogs

A sort-of mystery novel that may or may not involve a crime, Water Dogs is also the story of a family broken by the death of its patriarch, "Coach," whose three children (fail to) cope with his death in highly individualized and complicated ways.
Lewis Robinson's first novel picks up where Officer Friendly left off
By ALEX IRVINE  |  January 28, 2009
090102_gopnik_list

More sex, more Lincoln

The subject of Lincoln is like catnip to publishers (and readers), but the only things missing from our winter list are actual cat books.
A hefty reading season, from Jayne Anne Phillips and T.C. Boyle to Pablo Neruda
By BARBARA HOFFERT  |  December 29, 2008
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Animal house

Each of Sara Gruen’s first three novels have had animal characters who were crucial to the book, but Water for Elephants has made the biggest splash.
Sara Gruen’s fictional menagerie
By JOHNETTE RODRIGUEZ  |  April 30, 2008
Theater fiction list photo 3/24/06

Remembrance of remembrance

For editing life’s tone, style, and coherence, it’s hard to beat a journal’s written remembrance, but remembrance of that remembrance makes the story even better.
Writers reread their histories
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 22, 2006