The best-selling author Lauren Groff on artistic narcissism, Véra Nabokov, and her winding road to success.
Is Michel Houellebecq’s writing improved when he’s translated into English?
The writer’s new book of criticism is for the reader who “isn’t a professional and isn’t an academic and doesn’t have a theory to promote.”
Five decades after trading paintbrushes for pens, the Irish novelist says writing fiction remains an enigma.
With the writers we read again and again, our interpretation of their stories and legacies tends to change over time.
On Hemingway, Fitzgerald, and the sexual anxiety of the Lost Generation for The Paris Review
A short profile of the Man Booker Prize-winning author for The New Yorker
Books are much more. They are a way of being fully human. — Susan Sontag Anyone who has ever cozied up in a corner with a fascinating novel knows the pleasures of an afternoon spent reading. Perhaps it was when you whizzed through breezy books like the Harry Potter series or spent time (and a great deal of energy) grappling with the more serious concepts put forth by the likes of Dostoevsky or Safran Foer. Either way, finding that truly engaging novel is a beautiful moment, and is always something to be cherished. As C.S. Lewis said, “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” But what if reading is more than just a simple pleasure, more than something that entertains, teaches and engrosses?
In 1910, a fourteen-year-old Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald began recording his friendships, debaucheries, and many, many crushes in a diary known as his “thoughtbook.” It’s almost disturbing how perceptive he was of his social sphere at such a young age, and we can see his famous romantic idealization of women beginning to take flight with phrases like “she was very pretty with dark brown hair and eyes big and soft,” and moments where he grew so embarrassed over a crush that upon an unlikely meeting with one, he wrote, “I nearly fell down with embarrassment but I finally stammered ‘Give this to Kitty,’ and ran home.”