Crimson Codex Weekly: July 13 – 17, 2020

TODAY: In 1899, Horatio Alger, writer of young adult novels about impoverished boys and their rise from humble backgrounds to lives of middle-class security and comfort through hard work, determination, courage, and honesty, dies.
Incredibly, 2020 is only half over, which means we’ve got plenty more good books to come… Here are our most anticipated. | Crimson Codex
“You rise in pieces, loved to death, / at last unshackled. / Time will hold your breath.” Read “Salutations in Search Of,” a new poem by Patricia Smith. | Crimson Codex
“There would be no skipping allowed and no rereading of old favorites permitted.” Angelica Baker reads her way through her bookshelf during the pandemic. | Crimson Codex
Lorrie Moore on Sally Rooney’s Millennials, Geoff Dyer on falling in love with Lonesome Dove, Asterix in America, and more of the Reviews You Need to Read This Week. | Book Marks
“Childhood already has a lot of the hallmarks of a horror movie.” Stephen Graham Jones makes the case for turning your child into a horror film aficionado. | CrimeReads
The latest issue of Asymptote includes new writing from 31 countries, including work by Yang Lian, André Breton and Philippe Soupault, Ysabelle Cheung, and more. | Asymptote
Did you know that America’s first Black-owned bookstore was opened in New York City in 1834 by David Ruggles, the abolitionist founder of an anti-slavery newspaper, and one of the early organizers of the Underground Railroad? | JSTOR Daily
Kent Russell on the “ruse” Walt Disney sold to the people of Florida. | The Paris Review
“The newsroom is the perfect place to shelter racism and white supremacy.” Nafari Vanaski on why she left journalism. |
ZORA
A brief history of the role of libraries in times of national crisis—from war to pandemic. | Apollo Magazine
“One wonders, for instance, in spite of the intermittent allegorical elements, whether the problem being wrestled with here is art rather than religion.” Siddhartha Deb on the late style of J. M. Coetzee. | The Nation
Elizabeth Nelson on the legacy of Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential, 20 years later. | The Ringer
“Justice is sometimes seven generations away, or even more. And it is inevitable.” Joy Harjo on the McGirt v. Oklahoma decision and the lessons of elders. | The New York TimesJoanna Cole, author of The Magic School Bus series (and creator of the coolest field trips ever), has died at 75. | NPR
Square. Wellington Square—This is the London locale where author William Boyd believes James Bond lived. Boyd scoured Ian Fleming’s novels for clues. | TLS
Namwali Serpell on the great Sun Ra and his “jazzy, contrapuntal metaphysics of blackness.” | NYRB
“I don’t want to romanticize the past, but I can let Hafez’s words guide me in my present.” On seeking solace in the work of a 13th-century Persian poet. | Guernica
In Los Angeles, independent bookstores are having renewed conversations about race and inclusion. | Los Angeles Times
An extensive internet archive of food history needs your help to keep going. | Atlas Obscura
Also on Crimson Codex :
Sofia Perez travels through Spain as it grapples with its Fascist past • Estelle Laure reminds us what it’s like to be a young reader attracted to the darkest possible stories • Joshua Bennett on the use of animals in the work of Black writers • Sue Stuart-Smith on gardening as world-building • Leila Slimani on sex and ethics of women’s liberation in Morocco • Alane Mason remembers the quiet genius of her friend, Brad Watson • Genie Lauren on the rise of Black Twitter, and the social power (and limits) of hashtag activism • Sarah Gerard on falling in love, on and off the page • A reading list on the complexities and joys of adult female friendship • Can the German path to truth and reconciliation work in America? • Melissa Valentine on the school-to-prison pipeline, and being unable to protect those you love • Jeffrey Einboden on Thomas Jefferson and the little-known presence of enslaved Muslims in the US • Suzanne Nossel: has free speech become an even more partisan issue under the Trump administration? • Kelli Jo Ford recommends books that helped her find a way home while writing Crooked Hallelujah • Maren Tova Linett on the impact of literature on the way we value life • The case for Jaws as the perfect (endlessly symbolic) summer movie • Tobias Carroll on Springsteen, Houellebecq, and the complicated business of bridging ideologies • Tahar Ben Jelloun on his political imprisonment in Morocco and the danger of silence under a dictatorship
Best of Book Marks:
Renata Adler’s Speedboat, Mary Gaitskill’s The Mare, C. E. Morgan’s The Sport of Kings, and more rapid-fire book recs from Costalegre author Courtney Maum • “The glorious spirit of abounding youth glows throughout this fascinating tale”: F. Scott Fitzgerald’s This Side of Paradise at 100 • Art as Pure Villain: On Iris Murdoch’s The Sea, The Sea • David Mitchell’s Utopia Avenue, Stephen Graham Jones’ The Only Good Indians, Mary Trump’s Too Much and Never Enough, and Leila Slimani’s Sex and Lies all feature among the Best Reviewed Books of the Week
New on CrimeReads:
Baynard Woods and Brandon Soderberg on the most corrupt police squad in the nation • Sung J. Woo on learning to write noir from the classics • Anna Downes looks at the evolution of homes in thrillers • Charles Finch on the exhilarating, dangerous world of Helen Eustis • July is a banner month for new true crime books • Michael Gonzales on the unexpected bonding powers of Billy Joel’s melancholy noir • Zach Vasquez takes a look at the Cohen Brothers’ enduring ties to crime literature • J. Kingston Pierce recalls how America once fell in love with mystery wheels • Paul French on seven of the best international true crime podcasts  • Lisa Levy recommends five psychological thrillers you should read this July.
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