“Another Life” by Paul La Farge

There’s a fantastic short story in this week’s New Yorker (July 2, 2012) by Paul La Farge called “Another Life,” which is about an English professor (aren’t stories by English professors about English professors the best?) in his late 30s who picks up the bartender of his hotel after his wife goes off to sleepContinue reading ““Another Life” by Paul La Farge”

Theodora Keogh’s My Name is Rose

Theodora Keogh’s 1956 novel My Name is Rose is, like her 1954 novel, The Fascinator, about a married woman having an affair. However, unlike the earlier book, where the story builds up to the affair and the woman is not punished, My Name is Rose depicts a woman whose actions drive her to madness becauseContinue reading “Theodora Keogh’s My Name is Rose”

Euro 2012 Final: Middling Spain vs. Surprising Italy

Italy convincingly beat Germany 2-1 today to set up a match against Spain in the Euro 2012 final. Italy played their best match of the tournament despite a shaky game from goalkeeper Gigi Buffon, with Mario Balotelli scoring two fantastic goals in the first half. The Italians have played inconsistently in the tournament (their onlyContinue reading “Euro 2012 Final: Middling Spain vs. Surprising Italy”

R.I.P. Nora Ephron

Nora Ephron died today at the age of 71. This is a major loss for American culture. While I enjoyed a number of Ephron’s films, including When Harry Met Sally, You’ve Got Mail, and Bewitched, I will especially remember her for her occasional witty personal essays from the New Yorker and her early feminist essaysContinue reading “R.I.P. Nora Ephron”

Women Readers and the Crisis of the Male Novelist

Elaine Blair has a fantastic article in the current issue of The New York Review of Books (July 12, 2012) about how the fictional trend of oafish male protagonists has evolved from the work of hoary giants such as Philip Roth and John Updike through the work of present-day writers such as Gary Shteyngart andContinue reading “Women Readers and the Crisis of the Male Novelist”

Euro 2012: England Lose on Penalties Again

The Euro 2012 quarterfinals concluded today with England and Italy drawing 0-0 after extra time and the Italians progressing to the semifinals 4-2 on penalties. It was the first 0-0 match of the tournament even though both sides had some very good scoring chances in the first half and the game was an exciting oneContinue reading “Euro 2012: England Lose on Penalties Again”

Real Books Forever! or, Just Say “No” to ebooks

There is a fascinating and disturbing article by Ken Auletta in this week’s (June 25, 2012) New Yorker about the current legal face-offs between amazon.com and six large publishing companies in the U.S. (Random House, Penguin, Macmillan, Hachette, HarperCollins, and Simon & Schuster). Basically, Apple created a deal with the publishers to fix their ebookContinue reading “Real Books Forever! or, Just Say “No” to ebooks”

Theodora Keogh’s The Fascinator

Theodora Keogh’s 1954 novel The Fascinator is a stylistic departure from many of her other novels in that it follows numerous characters closely instead of one or two, and in that the climax occurs on the very last page rather than allowing room (sometimes too much room) for a denoument. The book is a slow,Continue reading “Theodora Keogh’s The Fascinator”

Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview

The first round of Euro 2012 ended today with England beating Ukraine 1-0 and France losing to Sweden 2-0. England thus advance to the quarterfinals as the winners of Group D with France in second. The English victory was a stereotypically English display–defend, defend, defend, and score on a set piece. Wayne Rooney had a goodContinue reading “Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview”

Euro 2012: The Somewhat Surprising “Group of Death”

Euro 2012’s Group B, the “Group of Death,” concluded today with Portugal and Germany notching 2-1 victories against Holland and Denmark, respectively. Germany very impressively took the full nine points to win the group and Portugal finished second with six, with their only loss 1-0 to the Germans. Portugal have looked better every match theyContinue reading “Euro 2012: The Somewhat Surprising “Group of Death””