Critical Notes

Roundup: Malcolm Gladwell, Julian Barnes, Meg Wolitzer, Elizabeth Gilbert and more

By Eric Liebetrau

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“Julian Barnes 'Levels' With Us On Love, Loss And Ballooning.” Heller McAlpin on the acclaimed author's new memoir. She also reviews Graeme Simsion's The Rosie Project, in addition to the latest book from bestseller Malcolm Gladwell, David and Goliath.

“Gladwell Tells Us Stuff Only Dummies Don’t Know.” Craig Seligman also reviews Gladwell's new book.

Balakian winner George Scialabba reviews Alexander Cockburn's A Colossal Wreck.

For the Miami Herald, Rayyan Al-Shawaf reviews Colin McAdam's heartrending novel A Beautiful Truth.

The Interestings feels as vital and tangible as life itself. It’s hard to ask more than that from any novel.” Harvey Freedenberg on Meg Wolitzer's well-received new novel.

For a second year, Celia McGee is running the @Macaulay Author Series, which gets underway on October 24 with Anna Holmes reading from her new book, The Book of Jezebel: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Lady Things, followed by a panel with Holmes, current Jezebel editor Jessica Coen, Lizzie Skurnick, Dodai Stewart, and Tracie Egan Morrissey.

NBCC board member Jane Ciabattari talks to Terry McMillan about her eighth novel, Who Asked You?, told from 15 points of view. Terry was the oldest of five (her first novel, MAMA, was an homage to her hard working mom), and says she was opinionated…hence the title, “Who asked you!?”

Julia M. Klein reviews Phyllis Chesler's An American Bride in Kabul for the Chicago Tribune. She also previews a Morgan Library & Museum show on Edgar Allan Poe in the Wall Street Journal.

NBCC board member Marcela Valdes asks, “What Terrifies Teens In Today's Young Adult Novels?”

Michael Lindgren explores three new story collections by Joyce Carol Oates, Andrea Barrett and Aimee Bender.

“The anointed king of American letters’ eccentric new book, The Kraus Project, is also hate mail for our shallow culture.” Adam Kirsch on Jonathan Franzen's new book.

Marion Winik reviews the new Elizabeth Gilbert for Newsday.

NBCC board member Carolyn Kellogg review the new novel from Dave Eggers.

A review of NBCC board member Rigoberto González's memoir.

Joe Peschel reviews Richard Burgin's Hide Island and Allan Gurganus’ Local Souls in a combination review in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

For the Boston Globe: NBCC board member Eric Liebetrau reviews Robert Walser's A Schoolboy's Diary. He also reviews Bill McKibben's Oil and Honey.