4 Books to Read By This Underrated Fantasy Writer

4 Books to Read By This Underrated Fantasy Writer

If you’re a fan of fantasy, you’ve probably read J.K. Rowling, Leigh Bardugo, and all the other must-read authors that swoop you up into a world of dreams and magic. But you may or may not have read Italo Calvino, an Italian journalist known for his short stories and whimsical fiction. Born in 1923, Calvino seems almost ahead of his time in fantasy and immersive settings. These magical twists always come when least expected because, in a Calvino book, anything is possible. If you want to take a dive into Calvino’s world (and come out feeling like someone unplugged your …

7 Books That Changed My Perspective on Life

7 Books That Changed My Perspective on Life

Though you may read anywhere between one and 200 books this year, only a few will really stay with you. Very rarely do you read a book that shifts the bedrock of your mind. We start building our outlook on life when we’re very young. It’s not easy for new ideas to come along and be retrofitted into our worldview. It’s sort of like pulling the bottom brick from Jenga. You just don’t mess with it.   But, sometimes, you do come across words on a page that change you. When you look at the paper, you’re one person. When …

Please, Hayao Miyazaki, Animate These Books

Please, Hayao Miyazaki, Animate These Books

Book Culture

The books I love that haven’t been turned into movies or TV shows are especially dear to me. Their one true version is in my head. Only I know what those books look like. Whenever it’s announced one of these few survivors is getting an adaptation, a little piece of my brain chips off. It’s not necessarily sad to see a book become a movie or TV show, but it does feel like theft.   If it’s being adapted by a real visionary, though, it’s different. A director with a really clear style can sometimes suit a book perfectly. Studio …

Why Reading Italo Calvino’s Stories Feels Like Turning off Gravity

Why Reading Italo Calvino’s Stories Feels Like Turning off Gravity

Book Culture

When my fifth grade report card came, my parents looked at it first. I was sat down on the couch, and my mom showed me the letter next to science: “F.” A big fat F. What followed was ten years of educational angst. I’d become too stressed by school to admit I enjoyed it. When the time came to study for the SATs, I didn’t. I just took the test, and then, having done badly the first time, retook it. Then, when my friends were visiting college campuses, I didn’t. I visited one, and decided I didn’t like it. I …

7 Experimental Books That Will Turn Your Head Inside Out

7 Experimental Books That Will Turn Your Head Inside Out

Book Culture

It takes someone who just does not give a fly frick to push things forward. It’s true in art, politics, science, math. It’s true of all the things, but it’s especially true of literature. The avant-garde forward-thinkers are mainly put on the sidelines when regular authors are publishing regular stories, but sometimes the punk rock-minded writers need a spotlight.   Some of these writers are contemporary, some are from the 70s, and some are from a long, long time ago. They are all here, though, assembled in a list of glorious weirdness.   1. Cent Mille Milliards de Poemes (1961) …