Tag: Essays

Oct 15 2018

Words Are My Matter by Ursula K. Le Guin

Here is Ursula K. Le Guin on life in pre-Roe America: My friends at NARAL asked me to tell you what it was like before Roe vs. Wade. They asked me to tell you what it was like to be twenty and pregnant in 1950 and when you tell your boyfriend you’re pregnant, he tells …

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Oct 14 2018

We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates

It often happens that the very best books are hardest to write about. I discovered TNC’s blog fairly early in his tenure at The Atlantic, and I made sure to keep coming back. Time zones — I lived in the South Caucasus at the time, even further from US schedules — meant that I missed much of …

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Feb 26 2018

The Naive and Sentimental Novelist by Orhan Pamuk

If I had read The Naive and Sentimental Novelist before reading Orhan Pamuk’s novels, I probably would not have bothered with them. That would have been a pity because most of them are very good, and one, Snow, is among the best I have ever read. So there’s a considerable gap between this collection of …

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Nov 01 2016

The View from the Cheap Seats by Neil Gaiman

One of the descriptions of Neil Gaiman that has stuck in my head is “reasonably facile writer.” He used the phrase in a New Yorker profile back in 2010, and there’s a British self-deprecating quality to the description, but there’s more than a little truth to it, too. Gaiman writes quickly, and with reasonable facility, …

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Mar 03 2015

The Mallet of Loving Correction by John Scalzi

I find it impossible not to like John Scalzi’s public persona. He’s clever, thoughtful, straightforward, and sometimes delightfully wacky. I read Whatever, his blog, regularly, and have for years. I also liked the first collection of writings from it, Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded. Nevertheless, even though I breezed happily through the new collection, …

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Aug 30 2013

Dickens, Dali, and Others by George Orwell

Aside from a couple of masterpieces that everyone is familiar with, most of Orwell’s fiction is not very good. His essays, however, are nothing short of brilliant. Most of these were written shortly before, during, or shortly after World War II, and even though the subjects are mostly literary his arguments are quite political, in …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2013/08/30/dickens-dali-and-others-by-george-orwell/