This week, we’re sharing stories from Peter Eisler, Linda So, Jason Szep, Grant Smith, Ned Parker, Jaed Coffin, Sarah Gilman, Katy Kelleher, and Irris Makler.

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1. Dying Inside

Peter Eisler, Linda So, Jason Szep, Grant Smith, Ned Parker | Reuters | October 16, 2020 | 19 minutes (4,936 words)

Nearly 5,000 inmates have died in U.S. jails without getting their day in court. Reuters investigates the fatalities in America’s biggest jails.

2. The COVID Cruise Ship and the Maine Fishing Town

Jaed Coffin | Down East | October 1, 2020 | 15 minutes (3,964 words)

“Eastport tried for years to lure mega cruise ships. Then, amid a global pandemic, it got one, along with a skeleton crew of coronavirus exiles.”

3. The Island That Humans Can’t Conquer

Sarah Gilman | Hakai Magazine | October 6, 2020 | 10 minutes (2,600 words)

“A faraway island in Alaska has had its share of visitors, but none can remain for long on its shores.”

4. Russet, the Color of Peasants, Fox Fur, and Penance

Katy Kelleher | The Paris Review | October 20, 2020 | 7 minutes (1,923 words)

“But russet means more than red-like, red-adjacent. It also means rustic, homely, rough. It also evokes mottled, textured, coarse. The word describes a quality of being that can affect people as well as vegetables.”

5. The Kindness of Strangers

Irris Makler | Griffith Review | July 26, 2020 | 9 minutes (2,278 words)

“Many women arrived here with only the clothes on their backs and the recipes inside their heads. Cooking again, having a kitchen in which to cook, was a sign of rebuilding; cooking the dishes they knew from home was a comfort and a pleasure, and a way to retain some European identity. You anchored your new family in the tastes of your old home.”