January 9, 2019

Lin-Manuel Miranda and three of his collaborators from Hamilton have bought the Drama Book Shop, the New York Times’s Michael Paulson reports. The bookshop has been searching for a new, more affordable space since late last year, something that the new owners intend to help with. The shop will close at the end of the month and reopen at a different Midtown location in the fall. “It’s the chronic problem — the rents were just too high, and I’m 84 years old — I just didn’t have the drive to find a new space and make another move,” said Rozanne Seelen, the current owner, who will stay on as a consultant. “Lin-Manuel and Tommy are my white knights.”

Kristen Roupenian. Photo: Elisa Roupenian Toha

The Believer has released the longlist for the magazine’s book awards. Nominees include Brian Dillon’s Essayism, Meghan O’Gieblyn’s Interior States, Helen DeWitt’s Some Trick, and more.

You Know You Want This author Kristen Roupenian talks to Michelle Cheever about monsters, horror, and going viral. “In a lot of ways, virality is just a thing that happens,” she said of the popularity of her New Yorker short story “Cat Person.” “Things have a certain momentum and then other things happen and algorithms kick in and suddenly something is happening that’s separate from whatever the internal quality of the thing is.”

Sam Lipsyte, Dana Czapnik, Sarah McColl, Madhuri Vijay, and Karen Thompson Walker all talk to LitHub about their writing process, least-favorite descriptions of their writing, and their respective new books.

At the New York Times, Brian Morton considers the modern reader’s attitude toward historical authors that held racist, sexist, or otherwise problematic viewpoints during their lifetimes. “It’s as if we imagine an old book to be a time machine that brings the writer to us. We buy a book and take it home, and the writer appears before us, asking to be admitted into our company. If we find that the writer’s views are ethnocentric or sexist or racist, we reject the application, and we bar his or her entry into the present,” he writes “I think we’d all be better readers if we realized that it isn’t the writer who’s the time traveler. It’s the reader. When we pick up an old novel, we’re not bringing the novelist into our world . . . we’re journeying into the novelist’s world and taking a look around.”

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