Critical Notes

Roundup: Novelist-critics, Sarah Thornton, Los Angeles Times freelancers, more

By Mark Athitakis

Should novelists double as book critics? Lev Grossman, Time critic and author of the forthcoming novel The Magician King, expresses second thoughts about his dual life as author and reviewer in Salon.

Sarah Thornton, author of Seven Days in the Art World, was awarded more than $100,000 after suing British newspaper the Telegraph for libel and malicious falsehood. Thornton writes about her experience in the legal system in the Guardian. (The Telegraph’s owners said it plans to appeal.)

Publishers Weekly reports that the Los Angeles Times has laid off its freelance book reviewers and columnists.

Janice Harayda reviews Mitchell Zuckoff’s Lost in Shangri-La: A True Story of Survival, Adventure, and the Most Incredible Rescue Mission of World War II for the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

Scott McLemee interviews Malcolm Harris, editor of the new anthology Share or Die: Youth in Recession, at Inside Higher Ed.

Mary Ann Gwinn reports on the revival of the journal Poetry Northwest for the Seattle Times.

Maureen Corrigan reviews Dana Spiotta’s new novel, Stone Arabia, for

Bethanne Patrick and NBCC President Eric Banks shared their summer reading suggestions on Minnesota Public Radio’s Midmorning.

Adam Kirsch reviews two books about life under Nazi rule, Dieter Schlesak’s novel The Druggist of Auschwitz and the nonfiction collection Reluctant Accomplice: A Wehrmacht Soldier’s Letters From the Eastern Front, for Tablet.

Ruth Franklin compares Jaycee Dugard’s memoir, A Stolen Life, with Emma Donoghue’s novel Room in the New Republic.

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