In her new weekly column, Elena Ferrante recounts the first time she fell in love.
On the occasion of her new essay collection, Feel Free, Zadie Smith fields questions from a number of people, including London mayor Sadiq Khan, cartoonist Chris Ware, Tate museum director Maria Balshaw, and authors Nikesh Shukla, Philip Pullman, and Matt Haig. As she tells Teju Cole: “I don’t think of myself as a contrarian. I’m useless at confrontation. But I also can’t stand dogma, lazy ideas, catchphrases, group-think, illogic, pathos disguised as logos, shoutiness, ad hominem attacks, bombast, liberal piety, conservative pomposity, ideologues, essentialists, technocrats, preachers, fanatics, cheerleaders or bullies. Like everybody, I am often guilty of some version of all of the above, but I do think the job of writing is to at least try and minimise that sort of thing as much as you can.”
If sales forecasts for Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury turn out to be accurate, it should outsell Donald Trump’s Art of the Deal.
At Publishers Weekly, Michele Filgate points out why Meg Wolitzer’s forthcoming novel The Female Persuasion is so of this moment: The novel “couldn’t be more timely, as the #MeToo movement calls out men who have abused their power and privilege to take advantage of women, whose accounts of mistreatment have been diminished or disbelieved.”
The New York Times has a profile of former book editor Daniel Mallory, whose novel The Woman in the Window debuted last week at No. 1 on the Times bestseller list. (The author already has a record-breaking deal with thirty-seven international publishers.) Mallory wrote the book, a thriller inspired in part by the films of Hitchcock, under the pseudonym A.J. Finn. The book was bought by William Morrow, where Mallory once worked, but acquiring editor Jennifer Brehl read the manuscript having no idea who it’s author really was: “I had no idea that [Mallory] was writing a book,” Brehl says.
On February 6, George Saunders will be in conversation with Dana Spiotta at Brooklyn’s Murmrr Theater. Tickets are on sale here.