We’re so pleased to feature two new releases from Tin House Books. During this time of Best-Of Book Lists we wanted to carve out some space for two titles that are stand-alone great. That they happen to be from the same publisher makes it all the more special. Editor Andrew Wetzel reviewed both. (Think, Gifts for writers!)
In celebration of the thirty-year anniversary of Portland’s Literary Arts, Tin House Books has put together this collection to honor the nonprofit literary center’s storied lecture series. It collects speeches given by ten well-known authors on literature and craft, with warm words of introduction from Jon Raymond. Though I preferred the speeches that felt playful and biographical, as opposed to theory-heavy, the quality level is uniformly high. Dare I suggest that the unpublished majority find something vaguely aspirational in the very act of reading these essays? It felt like research, the fun kind; you’re combining trade tips and techniques with reading, which I imagine is the favorite activity of most writers. Read the rest of the review here.
Eleven original essays appear in this collected work of narrative nonfiction by Charles D’Ambrosio. “I’m glad he went on the hunt for whale meat; it led to astute passages about the freedom to make your own mistakes. I’m grateful that he attended the trial of Mary Kay Letourneau; elsewise, we might not have these scalpel-sharp ruminations on language and intent. Charles D’Ambrosio is a brilliant onlooker, loitering in the doorway, on the outskirts of his stories.”