Synopses & Reviews
Edited by the award-winning and critically-acclaimed Edwidge Danticat, author ofBrother, I Am Dying,this classic collection of essays showcases the year's best.
Edited by "The New Yorker's" much-loved Adam Gopnik, this year's "Best American Essays" includes contributions by such writers as Albert Goldbarth, Anthony Lane, Louis Menand, and Ander Monson.
Here you will find the finest essays judiciously selected from countless publications” (Chicago Tribune), ranging from The New Yorker and Harpers to Swink and Pinch. In his introduction to this years edition, Adam Gopnik finds that great essays have text and inner text, personal story and larger point, the thing youre supposed to be paying attention to and some other thing youre really interested in.” David Sedariss quirky, hilarious account of a childhood spent yearning for a home where history was properly respected is also a poignant rumination on surviving the passage of time. In The Ecstasy of Influence,” Jonathan Lethem ponders the intriguing phenomenon of cryptomnesia: a person believes herself to be creating something new but is really recalling similar, previously encountered work. Ariel Levy writes in The Lesbian Brides Handbook” of her efforts to plan a party that accurately reflects her lifestyle (which she notes is not black-tie!”) as she confronts head-on what it means to be married. And Lauren Slater is off to Tripp Lake,” recounting the one summer she spent at campa summer of color wars, horseback riding, and the wild sadness” that settled in her when she was away from home.
In the end, Gopnik believes that the only real ambition of an essayist is to be a master of our common life. This latest installment of The Best American Essays is full of writing that reveals, in Gopniks words, the breath of things as they are.”
About the Author
Edwidge Danticat is the author of numerous critically accalimed books, including Breath, Eyes, Memory; Krik? Krak!, a National Book Award finalist, The Farming of Bones, an American Book Award winner; The Dew Breaker, a PEN/Faulkner Award finalist, and Brother, I'm Dying,winner of an NBCC award in Autobiography. ROBERT ATWAN has been the series editor ofThe Best American Essayssince its inception in 1986. He has edited numerous literary anthologies and written essays and reviews for periodicals nationwide.