The Black and White Literature of Chicago

Criminal Class Review Vol. 3 is 175 pages of stories and poetry by familiar names like Stephen Elliott, Jim Goad, and a host of people who’ve appeared in numerous lit. journals and mags that I like.  It’s sparse black & white layout makes the claim that it’s celebrating “the art of noir fiction” seem totally valid. Is it too late to submit this to The Faster Times literary magazine guide?

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Scrooge in Chicago

Over at Boing Boing is a crazy story about the worst man in Chicago, and the local librarians attempt to join the teamsters in order to stop him from getting the Oak Brook Public Library shut down. The guy even has the perfect name for a villain, Constantine “Connie” Xinos, and he said this: “I wanted that kid to lose sleep that night,” a grinning Xinos says Wednesday, as he invites me for a nearly two-hour interview in his Mercedes-Benz […]

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My favorite Yelp review of a bookstore

By Jason Diamond Tobias Carroll is going to Chicago. Being from there, and liking Mr. Carroll as much as I do, I tried my hardest to direct him to the finest booksellers in the city: Myopic, Quimbys, Armadillo’s Pillow, plus others in the north.  Also mentioning the south, and the stores in and around Hyde Park*. Since my (terrible) internal GPS only really works in and around the Northside, I had to use old, reliable Google to get addresses, and […]

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Bites: L Mag Dislikes Tao Lin, Depressing Books, Rewrite of The Prince, the Polanski Problem, Chicago, Ahmadinejad, Conde Nast, and more

L Magazine wouldn’t like Tao Lin.  Apparently only two people came to one of Lin’s readings at a bookstore in California, and the tiny magazine rejoiced.  To contrast, here is what Vol. 1 has said about Lin’s latest novel and publishing imprint. Lit. The Top 10 Most Depressing Books. Another list, The National Book Foundation’s “Top 5 Under 35.” The Millions has a charming essay about one writer’s experience at an artist’s retreat in Wyoming.  The Millions, also, interviewed Tao […]

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Bites: Chicago reflects, James Ellroy, new Eastwick, Twilight soundtrack, and more

The Guardian looks at literary Chicago, in it’s more “reflective period” in the wake of the Granta issue that focuses on the Windy City. Lit. To answer your question Gawker: no, we don’t need another Eastwick. Mental Floss has Kurt Vonnegut reading Breakfast of Champions three years before it’s released. (via 92Y) Minneapolis Star Review (via Largehearted Boy) talks to James Ellroy. And over at The Cult, they talk to Mr. Ellroy also. I guess because I’m a blogger, I […]

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Aleksandar Hemon is My Favorite Writer I’ve Never Read*

This is true first because he inhabits Chicago, a city where some of my fondest memories are held.  Second because of this, and finally this.  Now, a video of Hemon along with Stuart Dybek hangin’ out on a porch in Chicago, discussing Chicago, is up at Granta Mag, in light of their summer 2009 issue which honors the city. [vimeo 6625765] *For a few months The Lazarus Project has been sitting on my nightstand–next to A Mercy, which I bought […]

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Bites: Tragically o.o.p., who shot rock n’ roll, new book deals, Granta in Chicago, Andrew Bird + St. Vincent in Paris, and more

Lit. Dennis Cooper continues his “Tragically o.o.p. search and rescue mission”, with writer Tony Duvert’s Strange Landscapes. Cool Hunting on the photo book “Who Shot Rock n’ Roll“ In the never ending parade of folks getting book deals, Old Jews Telling Jokes has made it to the front of the line. (Thanks The Awl) Chicago Subtext asks you to write fiction in under 100 words or less. The Rumpus on the new Soft Skull book Label 228 Boston Globe talks […]

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