Did Virginia Woolf learn a bit of her modernism from Edith Wharton? John Colapinto argues so for The New Yorker.
Robinson resists the notion of love as an easy antidote to a lifetime of suffering or solitude, suggesting that intimacy can’t intrude on loneliness without some measure of pain. — Leslie Jamison reviews Marilynne Robinson‘s latest novel, Lila, which was recently longlisted for the National Book Award.
"These stories are loaded with memorable snapshots. But for a writer of Taylor’s wit and intelligence, that’s no longer enough." Our own Bill Morris reviews Justin Taylor’s Flings.
It’s a tricky thing, success. How do you write a book to follow your own breakout novel, a title that leapt off shelves and became a phenomenon? That’s a good problem to have, but a challenge nonetheless. — Jo Lennan reviews Christos Tsiolkas’s Barracuda.
"Most fiction about Jewish immigrants takes place in New York. I wanted to explore a different setting." Lisa Peet interviews Ronna Wineberg about On Bittersweet Place.
The 2014 National Book Award longlists all in one place, with bonus links!
Of all the literary genres, poetry has proved the most resistant to digital technology, not for stodgy cultural reasons but for tricky mechanical ones. — Looks like that might be changing, however, as Open Road releases Flow Chart, Your Name Here and 15 other John Ashbery digital poetry collections.
You may have heard that our own Emily St. John Mandel has a new book on shelves. The book depicts a post-apocalyptic future in which a group of nomadic actors deal with the aftermath of a devastating flu pandemic. Claire Cameron (who’s also written for The Millions) reviews the book for The Globe and Mail.
Recommended Reading: Jess Walter on Mr. Tall by Tony Earley.
Ever since the Man Booker prize was opened up to American writers, there’s been a renewed debate about America’s contributions to the literary scene. Many people have wondered who past Bookers would have gone to had American authors been eligible. At The Guardian, a roundtable including Year in Reading alum Joshua Ferris, Curtis Sittenfeld, Edna O’Brien and Martin Amis pick American books they think would have won if they’d had the chance. You could also read Joanna Scutts on the history of the prize.