Books

The news that juror B37 from the Zimmerman trial was signed by a literary agent—Sharlene Martin, persuasively described on her website as “the Jerry Maguire of literary agents” and tied to books written about the trials of Jodi Arias, O.J. Simpson, and Amanda Knox—was hardly surprising. But within hours the rumblings of outrage began.

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Look who else liked to write in secret. 

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Two new books attempt but seem like entries in a dying genre.

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When Evil Was a Social System

The moral burdens of living under communist rule in Eastern Europe

Anne Applebaum and Marci Shore have shown that there is much to know about communism in this century that was not obvious to everyone. Both regard Soviet communism as more intertwined with the history of Nazism than most historians did before the fall of the Berlin Wall.

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A Wasted Crisis?

Why the Democrats did so little to change Wall Street

Beyond the immediate emergency, the financial crisis of 2008 also set up a critical test of governing capacity: could Congress and the incoming Obama administration take advantage of the crisis, defy cynical expectations, and adopt effective legislation to restore financial stability and prevent another meltdown?

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In The New York Times 'Open Book' section, which appears in the Sunday Book Review and is full of nuggets on the literary world, there appears the following:

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Zen and the Art of Fantasy Football

A memoir of the (fantasy) sporting life

Thirteen percent of Americans participate in fantasy sports—some even see it as the narrative backbone of their lives.

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What Should an Essay Do?

Two new collections reinvent the form

As a genre grounded in productive uncertainty, the essay is constantly posing the conundrum of its own existence.

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Failure to Rescue

How FDR hurt Jewish would-be immigrants

President Roosevelt’s policies about Jews were calculated the way he calculated other strategic options: politically. But some choices fall in a different, more fundamental, dimension. That is what Josiah DuBois implied when he charged the United States with complicity in Hitler’s murders. These judgments still sting.

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