LARB really came out of nowhere for me. I was vaguely aware of them for the last year or two, but either they really started hitting their stride this past fall or I just wasn’t paying enough attention. A recent piece by Tom Dibblee, ostensibly on the history of Anheuser-Busch but really an exploration into the pitfalls of nepotism and the writer’s unabashed love for Bud Light Lime, is easily one of the best things I’ve read so far this year. It’s a bold statement, I know, but I really think the LA Review of Books is as close to the perfect literary review for this generation and these times as it gets.
Don’t let the boring name fool you: Collectors Weekly has some of the more creative and bizarre stuff out there. The editorial arm of the site publishes one or two long reads a week, and almost all of them are worth reading from top to bottom. From an in-depth look at the return of the “Cosby sweater” (featuring an interview with the pudding-loving comedian himself) to a political history of the prosthetic limb to the tale of how an obsessive antique collector got hooked on opium, they’re constantly putting out content that scratches my itch for the weird.
Yeah, I’m that asshole reading Hitchens on the subway these days. And there’s no hiding it with the big, bright yellow cover. I was of course bummed when Hitchens died (partly because I naïvely thought he’d somehow escape his death sentence), but it’s really only after reading through this selection of his work that I realized how impactful a loss that was. The breadth of topics and his ability to make nearly any subject digestible is astounding. It’s basically like reading an opinionated Wikipedia, albeit a better and more inflammatory one.
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