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Women Read Women

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Women read books written by women and men read books written by men, reports the Guardian. A study of Goodreads data suggests that people prefer reading books written by those who share their gender. The study also reveals that men and women read roughly the same number of books; however, women read twice as many books published in 2014 as men did.

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Robinson Renewed

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For The Millions, Alex Engebretson argues that despite the twenty-four year gap between the publication of Marilynne Robinson’s first and second novel, the author’s recurring themes and imagery present a “singular vision”:

Instead of an author who recreated herself late in her career, Robinson is one who has returned and renewed imaginative possibilities already latent within her first book.

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Brecht in Love

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Who would’ve thought Bertolt Brecht would turn out to be such a romantic? While his newly released Love Poems are surprisingly erotic compared to his better-known plays, they retain that Marxist flair we know and love:

Brecht’s love poems might just as easily be dubbed the death of love poems, since he is concerned with the vicissitudes of love, with the manner in which one is first defined and then destroyed by love.

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Tart, Mitchell, and Gaiman to the Rescue

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After years of financial struggle, Barnes & Noble’s enlists renowned authors like Donna Tart, David Mitchell and Neil Gaiman to help compete with Amazon this holiday season. While Tart and Mitchell will contribute thousands of signed books to helps bolster sales, Gaiman has planned appearances at several of the chain’s bookstores.

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Dan Weiss’s Morning Coffee

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will really return next Monday. I can’t begin to say how thankful I am for all of you who’ve been reading this dang thing for so long and for the whole Rumpus community. See you soon.

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Weekend Rumpus Roundup

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In the Saturday Interview, May Cobb talks with Austin-based multi-instrumentalist Guy Forsyth about The Freedom to Fail, his first studio album in six years. In a touching aside about his daughter, Forsyth explains the album title: “…she can only grow to the extent that she reaches for things.” Their discussion is framed by the backdrop of Austin, Texas, the continually metamorphosing “Live Music Capital of the World.”

Then, in a review of the “masterful” and “personal” Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows, Kenji Liu highlights the gradually evolving voice of poet Eugenia Leigh.

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Language Wars

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Most writers aspire to clarity in language. Politicians, of course, are the exception. Legislators are turning to language to obscure their intentions, claims Steven Poole over at the Guardian. Poole cites a trade deal between the EU and the United States that confounds the issue of tariffs known as TTIP:

One might be forgiven for concluding from this, and in general from the obfuscatory and often downright misleading bureaucratese in which TTIP’s aims are framed, that they are trying to hide something.

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Sunday Links

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This week I read a lot about rape.

I became aware that Bill Cosby was almost certainly a rapist about 10 years ago, when Andrea Costand brought a civil suit against him that included 13 women with similar accusations. Her story and motives were questioned; the case was settled out of court; and I was left with a familiar feeling, the foggy-headed queasiness that comes from living in a world where probable or known sex offenders are walking right beside you, or up there starring on the screen.

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