I came to Atkinson through her mystery novels, the Jackson Brodie series, so when I heard she was publishing a standalone novel—and worse yet, a literary one—I wasn’t sure how I was going to feel about it. Here’s how I did feel: physically electrified.
I’ve thought about writing her. But what would I say? I’m Jennifer Berman, too?
Quirky best friends never go on jogs. They just talk and talk and talk, quickly and in different voices, until an indulgent eye-roll from the protagonist sends them on their way. On the transcriber’s shitlist, they rank somewhere between one of Aaron Sorkin’s voluble policy wonks and a Cockney street urchin in a British police procedural.
If you’re tired of only getting catalogs and bills in your mailbox, ask your friends to mail their tweets. For a month, Giles Turnbull corresponded with 15 of his Twitter followers by mail. “Tweeting by post made me appreciate the online and the offline. Brevity is a good thing, but there’s no reason we should only be brief on Twitter,” Turnbull writes for The Morning News. Pair with: Our roundup of literary Twitter’s first tweets.
Lubin Lawrence: If you could describe Hershey, Godiva, and Dove chocolate as people, how would you describe them?
I went to school with Hershey. He thought he was so special, and people were all like “Ooooh Hershey,” but then I went to college and forgot all about him. Last I heard, he was cleaning windows for a living. Godiva inherited the house after her aunt died, and tried making a career as an artist. No-one liked her work—too much violence, not enough humanity. We’re still in touch, but our Facebook conversations are about trivia and crap on TV. I don’t think I have much to say to her anymore. Dove does telephone sales calls. I think she got married to some guy from Denver. They don’t have kids.
Recommended Reading: Tyler Stoddard Smith’s essay on when Allen Ginsberg stayed with his family. “The following night, after Ginsberg’s poetry reading (why would I want to go to that?) a group of students eager for him to impart morsels of omniscience were forced to wait outside my room while we played video games on my Atari 2600—I destroyed Ginsberg at Frogger, but he eviscerated me on Combat.”
Fellow children of the ‘90s will remember how much that decade was a kind of Golden Age for disaster movies. Then as now, explosive blockbusters like Independence Day, Twister and Dante’s Peak satisfied a collective appetite for wide-scale destruction and mayhem. At The Morning News, Ethan Gilsdorf considers what the genre’s evolution has to say about us.
Christian pretends to be Tom Sawyer. Ana is a picket fence. Needing a break from all the kinky sex, Christian pays a couple of bums to whitewash her and takes in a Cardinals game instead.