“I just finished reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. I was awed by the quality of the writing, sentence by sentence, but I kept thinking: “This book needs an editor!” Occupational hazard. Now I’m reading another novel, Short Century, by David Burr Gerrard. Gerrard reviewed Acid Test, and I was so impressed with his reading of it that I decided to take a look at his book, and I’m glad I did — very imaginative and original, and he knows how to keep the reader interested from page one.”
When the longlist for the National Book Awards was announced last week, it had the usual suspects - books by previous winner Richard Powers and two Pulitzer winners, Jane Smiley and Marilynne Robinson. And there was one big surprise: the novel "Wolf in White Van" by John Darnielle, who is known as the man behind the Mountain Goats, a lyrically gifted indie rock band.
You probably know Maureen Corrigan's voice, if not her face. The sensible-sounding book critic on NPR's "Fresh Air" has reviewed a lot of books over the years, but only one fully has her heart: "The Great Gatsby," a novel that left her cold the first time she read it but which she now calls "a literary miracle."