Sign Up

Get the latest ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.

All Anthology Coverage

Some are short, and some are long, but the stories in these three audiobooks will sweep you away for hours.

★ The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

V. E. Schwab's The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is a rare, original fable that feels timeless. As a young woman in the 17th century, Addie makes a deal with the darkness, embodied by Luc, a trickster god. He grants her immortality with the caveat that everyone she ever meets will fail to remember her. Addie lives in the shadows for hundreds of years, roaming Europe and the United States, finding ways to get by and doomed to solitude, until one day, she meets a man who can remember her. This epic story, spanning three centuries and two continents, is expertly narrated by Julia Whelan. Her performance grows and changes with Addie, capturing her early French accent and her later American one, which still carries a slight French tinge. This is a transporting listen, and these characters will stick with you for a long time.

Black Bottom Saints

Co-narrated by Prentice Onayemi and Imani Parks, Alice Randall's novel Black Bottom Saints captures the memories of Joseph "Ziggy" Johnson, a gossip columnist who founded a famed dance school in Detroit. As Ziggy recalls the men and women who touched his life from the 1930s to the '60s, he pays tribute to these heroes and toasts each one with a custom cocktail (recipes included). From local legends to household names like Count Basie and Martin Luther King Jr., each story shines a spotlight on Black excellence. Onayemi does a beautiful job narrating the book from Ziggy's perspective, bringing gravity and a warm nostalgia to the telling. Parks plays Ziggy's goddaughter, who is piecing together his story, and her modern sensibility provides a welcome contrast. Both narrators hail from Broadway, and they bring notable vitality to the narration.

The Best of Me

Arguably the king of audiobooks, David Sedaris returns with his greatest hits, The Best of Me, all selected by the author from his more than 25-year career. From imagined letters to the editor to quirky stories about his large family, this collection gathers all the favorites in one place. Sedaris narrates the audiobook as only he can, his distinct voice emphasizing the odd observations that make his perspective so unique. This is a perfect point of introduction to an expansive and celebrated opus.

Some are short, and some are long, but the stories in these three audiobooks will sweep you away for hours.

Neil Gaiman is generally categorized as a writer of fantasy or speculative fiction, but as the 52 selections in The Neil Gaiman Reader confirm, the beloved storyteller's gifts defy neat classification. This doorstop-size volume will surely be welcomed by Gaiman's legion of fans, but its greater purpose may be to introduce his work to those who are not yet acolytes. Spanning his career from 1984 to 2018, these stories, novellas and excerpts from novels are presented in chronological order and offer a broad overview of his talent for fiction.

When it came time to select the stories included here, Gaiman delegated the job to his fans, who voted for their favorites online. The novel excerpts, on the other hand, were chosen by the author and his editor and include extracts from some of his most popular works, including American Gods, Anansi Boys and Neverwhere. For die-hard fans who have already read his entire opus, Gaiman throws in one previously unpublished story, "Monkey and the Lady," a whimsically philosophical fable. The end product is a hefty volume that warrants dipping into rather than devouring cover-to-cover, an approach that Gaiman himself encourages in his preface.

There is something here for nearly every taste. While the heart of a Gaiman story always contains an element of the fantastical, there is also always something rudimentarily human at its core. This quality, along with his superior narrative skills, may be what most separates Gaiman from less polished writers in the fantasy genre. A story such as "Chivalry," wherein a pensioner buys the Holy Grail at a thrift shop for 30 pence and is then visited by an excruciatingly polite and valorous Sir Galahad, is at turns hilarious and surprisingly touching. "The Goldfish and Other Stories" brilliantly captures the vagaries and absurdities of the film business while being about so much more: quickly fading history, unexpected friendship and the cultural mythology that can be created despite documented proof to the contrary. The devastating loss of memory to senility propels "The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury," which is also a backdoor homage to Gaiman's masterful literary progenitor. "Snow, Glass, Apples" may leave you rethinking every fairy tale you have taken at face value since childhood.

The Neil Gaiman Reader is filled with far too many riches to explore here. In his foreword, Marlon James writes that the ghost of Jorge Luis Borges, the great fabulist, hovers over these stories, but really, Gaiman's influences are more numerous and far-flung. Indeed, this volume provides evidence that Gaiman has transcended those influences to become the influencer himself, creating fictional landscapes that inspire and move us as much as they entertain.

Neil Gaiman is generally categorized as a writer of fantasy or speculative fiction, but as the 52 selections in The Neil Gaiman Reader confirm, the beloved storyteller's gifts defy neat classification. This doorstop-size volume will surely be welcomed by Gaiman's legion of fans, but its greater purpose may be to introduce his work to those […]

Focusing on famous fathers, these books provide one-of-a-kind insights into the duties of dadhood and the triumphs and trials of parenting. 

Let’s Never Talk About This Again

In Let’s Never Talk About This Again, Sara Faith Alterman, producer of “The Mortified Podcast,” tells the strange-but-true story of her seemingly conservative father, Ira, and his surprising career as a popular author of novelty sex books. As a dad, Ira is attentive, loving and, to all appearances, a fuddy-duddy of the first order—the sort of guy who insists on saying “bottom” instead of “butt” and considers coffee an adult beverage. Alterman learns about his writing life at the age of 12 when she discovers a collection of his titles in the living room. Ira’s kinky vocation is a topic that goes unbroached in the family for years, until he’s diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and decides to make a comeback in the bawdy book business.

From this surreal family scenario, Alterman has crafted a narrative that’s affectionate yet fierce, filled with lively anecdotes of her Boston upbringing and with soul-searching exploration as she works to reconcile the conflicting sides of Ira, who died in 2015 at the age of 70. “A cheddar sharp cheeseball who couldn’t resist a pun” is how Alterman describes him, but, as she comes to realize, Ira was also a passionate person with a private inner life. Alterman is a top-notch comic writer, and fans of Chris Offutt’s memoir My Father the Pornographer or the podcast “My Dad Wrote a Porno” will especially love this smart, compelling chronicle of family connections and the foibles and contradictions that make us human.

The New One

Comedian Mike Birbiglia comes to terms with his own foibles as a father in The New One: Painfully True Stories From a Reluctant Dad. In this funny, candid memoir, which was inspired by his hit Broadway show The New One, Birbiglia muses upon his former—and profound—aversion to becoming a father, the path that brought him to parenthood and the ways in which playing the role of papa has forever altered him.

Birbiglia is a stand-up comedy star and actor (“Broad City,” “Orange Is the New Black”), and he’s as amusing on the page as he is onstage and on-screen. An affable narrator with humility and good humor, he tracks his evolution from a guy who’s resolute about not reproducing to a father whose laptop holds 4,326 photos of his infant daughter. Along the way, he opens up about the toll of traveling for comedy gigs and his ongoing weight and health struggles.

But his main focus is newbie parenthood with its attendant adjustments, such as when he’s forced to relinquish his beloved couch—the first item of furniture he purchased as an adult—to his daughter, because it’s the only place she’ll sleep. (He describes this experience as being “evicted from your own life.”) His perspectives are complemented by clever poems from his wife, J. Hope Stein, which appear throughout the book. Seasoned and rookie dads alike will appreciate Birbiglia’s comic riffs on family life. His memoir is a can’t-miss gift that’s sure to make ’em laugh.

To Me, He Was Just Dad

Celebrity dads take center stage in the anthology To Me, He Was Just Dad: Stories of Growing Up With Famous Fathers, edited by Joshua David Stein. An intriguing collection of essays written by the children of actors, authors, inventors, sports heroes and scientists, the book gives readers the lowdown on what it’s like to be raised by a legend.

Frequently funny and consistently intimate, the essays reveal surprising truths about their subjects. Erin Davis shares fond on- and offstage memories of his dad, Miles Davis, that belie the musician’s brooding public persona. Isabelle Bridges Boesch recalls cherished childhood moments with her father, actor Jeff Bridges. Having the Dude for a dad, she writes, is “like having the greatest, most imaginative friend in the world.” Zoe Jackson, daughter of Samuel L. Jackson, describes the swaggering, unflappable star as “a big nerd, in the best way possible.”

In the book’s introduction, Stein asks, “How wide is the gap between what the public thinks of notable men and what the sons or daughters of those men experience?” These essays offer an answer. Kurt Vonnegut, Leonard Nimoy, Carl Sagan and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar are also included in this showcase of prominent papas. Rare family photos give the book extra appeal. Stein, who is editor-at-large at Fatherly, a digital brand that offers parenting resources, delivers a great read for dads everywhere with this touching tribute to family men.

In honor of Father's Day, we’ve lined up a trio of terrific reads that are sure to please Pop.

Four books celebrate our friends who fight for justice, the right to love, the power to tell their own stories and the possibility of a better future. They’re also the perfect gift for a budding ally who wishes to learn more.


Activist by KK Ottesen
One can’t help but feel inspired by the over 40 interviews and black-and-white portraits compiled in Activist: Portraits of Courage, written and photographed by KK Ottesen, a Washington Post contributor and author of a similarly styled book, Great Americans. Ottesen’s powerful photographs immediately draw readers in, adding to the intimacy of these highly readable first-person interviews, all introduced by a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.: “A time comes when silence is betrayal.”

In content, layout and style, this is an engrossing, inviting volume, one that spotlights a wide range of figures, from age 21 to 94. There are well-known personalities like John Lewis, Ralph Nader, Angela Davis, Billie Jean King, Bernie Sanders and Marian Wright Edelman. Then there are relative newcomers to the scene, such as Jayna Zweiman, co-founder of the 2016 Pussycat Project; Linda Sarsour, the Palestinian American co-chair of the 2017 Women's March; and transgender actor Nicole Maines, the anonymous plaintiff in a Maine Supreme Judicial Court regarding gender identity and bathroom use in schools. Maines speaks of knowing from an early age, “I didn’t feel the need to hide who I was. Nobody else had to, so why should I?”

Seeing Gender by Iris Gottlieb
After reading last year’s Seeing Science and now Seeing Gender: An Illustrated Guide to Identity and Expression, I’ve become an incurable Iris Gottlieb fan. No matter what the topic, this graphic artist has a singular knack for presenting an imaginative array of art and text in an informative, exciting way.

Early on, this new book features a helpful spread of 24 gender terms, including agender, cisgender, gender dysphoria and intersex. “All of us are shapeshifters,” Gottlieb explains. In straightforward, vibrantly illustrated prose that is neither politicized nor reactionary, Gottlieb further explores these terms, while also discussing such varied topics as gender etiquette, gender biology, sex verification in sports, Frida Kahlo, Laverne Cox, Prince, gender violence, Stonewall, #MeToo and much, much more. Gottleib also includes her own story, noting that “she” is her pronoun of choice for the time being, that she identifies as a boy (“for now”), is asexual, has struggled with anorexia and in 2018 had both breasts removed, a surgical transformation she bravely describes with a series of “after” photos.

No matter your age or inclination, Seeing Gender presents an extraordinarily helpful discussion in a way that’s both personal and powerful. As Gottlieb concludes, “The process of learning about gender is never finished.”

Drawing Power edited by Diane Noomin
Many books have been born from the #MeToo movement, but perhaps none so comprehensively resonant as Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival. In vastly divergent styles, 63 female cartoonists—of different races, ages, nationalities and sexual orientations—tell their immensely varied, poignant stories here, demonstrating the power of their medium.

Emil Ferris (My Favorite Thing Is Monsters) describes how she found her way back to cartoons decades after being sexually brutalized by a relative while watching a Mr. Magoo special on TV. As a result, her beloved cartoons felt suddenly poisoned, and for years she turned instead to fine art and illustrating. Finally, while working on the aforementioned graphic novel, Ferris noticed that she “found herself using a cartoonier style when I needed to talk about difficult things . . . especially those revelatory moments when a character confronts abuse, fear and shame.”

As Drawing Power so strikingly proves, cartoons do indeed provide the perfect forum for sharing these intensely intimate, painful stories. And editor Diane Noomin offers an important distinction, noting, “The artists in this collection present themselves not as victims but rather as truth tellers, shining light on the dirty secrets of abusers.”

How to Cure a Ghost by Fariha Róisín
As an Australian Canadian based in Brooklyn, Fariha Róisín knows all too well how tricky it is trying to navigate the world as a queer Muslim femme. “i was born to this sticky mess, this stark confusion.” she writes in How to Cure a Ghost, her powerful biographical collection of 50 poems, beautifully complemented by abstract illustrations from Monica Ramos.

In a sensual, evocative style reminiscent of Rupi Kaur’s Milk and Honey, Róisín acknowledges, “i am tied to this skin, although I may not always understand it.” She chronicles her father’s challenges as an immigrant and her mother’s struggles as a Muslim woman with mental illness. Róisín remembers being 7 and briefly taking a “white name”—Felicity Hanson—to try to gain acceptance from a neighbor. She describes watching 9/11 unfold on television from her home in Sydney, Australia, saying that as a Muslim, “this world was not built for us.” Her virginity was stolen by a man who got her pregnant, telling her “it’s not a big deal.”

Despite everything, Róisín writes of hope, boldly declaring, “i am better now. i gave birth to myself, a new beginning, a robust cycle. i rewrote the scriptures of my mother’s pasts, and her mother’s pasts. i am in the throes of survival, i am lived. i am living. it’s astonishing.”

Four books celebrate our friends who fight for justice, the right to love, the power to tell their own stories and the possibility of a better future.

It’s always a delight to celebrate the women who make us laugh, who have shaped popular culture and politics and who have defined (and redefined) aging. 


The League of Extraordinarily Funny Women by Sheila Moeschen
The League of Extraordinarily Funny Women: 50 Trailblazers of Comedy is a small coffee table book that’s a treat to explore. Sheila Moeschen provides thumbnail biographies of comics ranging from Moms Mabley to Tig Notaro, capturing a little of what makes each woman unique. Categories include “Snarky, Sassy, Super Smarties” and “Courageous, Creative, Character Comics.” (It’s a crime that Madeline Kahn is not among the comics included, but what’s a list without some controversy?) Artist Anne Bentley’s full-color illustrations bring Kate McKinnon’s feline grin and Robin Thede’s laser brilliance to life. If you’re a comedy fan, there’s a good chance you’ll discover some new favorites while connecting with women you already admire in this era-spanning celebration.

No Stopping Us Now by Gail Collins
New York Times columnist Gail Collins looks at the ways aging has both limited and liberated women in No Stopping Us Now: The Adventures of Older Women in American History. Lots of nuggets here are hilarious in hindsight, like a women’s magazine from the 1800s asserting that a woman is considered young at 17 but a “snubbed, spinster governess” at merely “nine-and-twenty.” Collins goes through four centuries of history, and doesn’t shy away from ugliness, such as the virulent racism of many early feminists. She tells the stories of still-famous women who achieved great things later in life (Sojourner Truth and Sandra Day O’Connor) as well as those who have faded into obscurity (Gilded Age actress Eileen Karl and Wild West stagecoach driver  Mary Fields). The suffrage movement in particular found older women coming into their own both socially and politically. This account is a moving tribute of the power and persistence of American women. 

Vanity Fair’s Women on Women edited by Radhika Jones
Vanity Fair’s Women on Women delivers exactly what the title suggests: 28 essays profiling women who stand out in politics, pop culture and society at large, all penned by women. A trio of first lady profiles—Barbara Bush, Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama—is a study in contrasts, offering views from inside and outside the White House. Royalty abounds, both British (Princess Diana, Queen Elizabeth II), and American (Lady Gaga, Meryl Streep). A section of essays by women “In Their Own Words” includes an analysis of the meaning of #MeToo by Monica Lewinsky. A particular delight is “Emily Post’s Social Revolution,” in which Laura Jacobs profiles the woman whose notions of etiquette still guide us today. Don’t miss this deep and dishy collection.

It’s always a delight to celebrate the women who make us laugh, who have shaped popular culture and politics and who have defined (and redefined) aging.  The League of Extraordinarily Funny Women by Sheila Moeschen The League of Extraordinarily Funny Women: 50 Trailblazers of Comedy is a small coffee table book that’s a treat to explore. Sheila […]

Sign Up

Sign up to receive reading recommendations in your favorite genres!

Recent Reviews

After a break-in at her home in which she is forced to defend herself from an assassin, Marie Mitchell decides to document her life for the benefit of her children in case she is one day killed. So begins Lauren Wilkinson’s debut novel, American Spy, which chronicles the life of a black woman recruited to the CIA during the height of the Cold War.

Author Interviews

Recent Features

Sign Up

Sign up to receive reading recommendations in your favorite genres!