September 21, 2017

Lillian Ross

Lillian Ross, who wrote for the New Yorker for sixty years, died yesterday at 99. The New York Times writes that Ross “preached unobtrusive reporting and practiced what she preached.” At the New Yorker, Rebecca Mead reflects on working with Ross, who was still writing for the magazine when Mead joined the staff in 1997. “Lillian was a generous champion of younger writers at the magazine, especially younger writers who sought, like her, to chronicle New York’s human comedy,” she writes. “In them—in us—she surely recognized her mischievous, enduring, shit-kicking self.” The magazine also offers a selection of Ross’s work, chosen out of her archive of over five hundred pieces. 

Finalists for the Kirkus Prize have been announced. Nominees include Mohsin Hamid’s Exit West, Hari Kunzru’s White Tears, and Patricia Lockwood’s Priestdaddy: A Memoir.

Alex Neason looks at the cover of the Village Voice’s final print issue, which features Bob Dylan. “In arguably the most important year in generations for the type of scrappy, nobody-is-safe news reporting the Voice defined, featuring a long irrelevant (albeit a Greenwich Village icon) music star on the cover seems at best a missed opportunity,” he writes. “At worst, safe.”

Chelsea Handler and Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards will be presenters at the PEN Center USA’s Literary Awards Festival in October. Handler will give the Freedom to Write Award to the New York Times’s Emily Steel and Michael Schmidt for their reporting on Bill O’Reilly’s sexual harassment settlements, while Richards will introduce Margaret Atwood as she accepts her Lifetime Achievement Award.

Politico talks to Joe Lindsley, a one-time protege of Roger Ailes, about his new book, Fake News, True Story. Although many books about Roger Ailes and his time at Fox News have been bought by major publishers, Lindsley is self-publishing his book after pitching it to publishers without success. One reason for that might be that the book, which Lindsley bills as a memoir, “lands somewhere between memoir and roman à clef”—written in the third person, Lindsley uses aliases for many characters and represents himself through the protagonist, Jack Renard. “When people read the story, I want them to feel as paranoid, as crazy, as disturbed as I felt,” he said of the book’s structure. “I want the reader to feel that sort of frenzy and to understand deeply what this world is like, this world that has affected all of us.”

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