What happens when you read to manifest, rather than escape, your preoccupations?
Michael Chabon wrote one of my favorite sentences of all time. It’s in a story called “Blumenthal on the Air,” first published in Mademoiselle in 1987 and collected in 1991’s A Model World. I’ve forgotten what “Blumenthal on the Air” is about, but this sentence has stuck with me
There aren’t many books that are the best. I have favorites; we all do. Awards committees and English departments do. There are classics and The Best American Short Stories and all the rest, but how many books can you say, without second-guessing yourself, without blushing or adding, “I think,”