This is the second year we've put this book together, and we're beginning to have some idea of what were doing. But do we know exactly what this book is? We do not. The original purpose of the collection was to introduce younger readers--high school and college-age people, more or less--to good writing from contemporary writers. But then the book came out and we discovered that the readership was not what we'd expected. Sure, there were some high school and college readers, but there were also older readers, and younger readers, and readers from every walk of life-police officers, firefighters, animal control experts, air-conditioning repair technicians, and prisoners. It runs the gamut. Now, your questions answered: What is the purpose of this book? - The purpose of this book is to collect good work of any kind-fiction, humor, essays, comics, journalism-in one place, for the English-reading consumer. The other books in the Best American series are limited by their categories, most particularly the popular but constraining Best American Catholic Badger Mystery Writing. This collection is not so limited, which is why, we think, it dominates all similar collections, making them whimper and cower in a way that is shameful. Why aren't there more pieces about badgers? -Reginald, Myrtle Beach, We had plans to include at least seven pieces about badgers-their manufacture, appearance, and care-but were prevented from doing so by Zadie Smith. This was a condition of her inclusion in this volume.In addition to the pieces included in the collection, and Ms. Smiths introduction-or whatever it is-will there be a piece by the editor about a young man with a crush on a sixty-five-year-old woman whose lawn he cuts? -Peter and Nam Mee, Washington, DC We might have such a piece. It might be immediately following this sentence.(From the Foreword by Dave Eggers) Since its inception in 1915, the Best American series has become the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction. For each volume, the very best pieces are selected by an editor who is widely recognized as a leading writer in his or her field, making the Best American series the most respected--and most popular--of its kind. Dave Eggers, who will be editing The Best American Nonrequired Reading annually, has once again chosen the best and least-expected fiction, nonfiction, satire, investigative reporting, alternative comics, and more from publications large, small, and on-line--The Onion, The New Yorker, Shout, Time, Zoetrope, Tin House, Nerve.com,and McSweeney's, to name just a few.
The purpose of this book is to collect good work of any kind -- fiction, humor, essays, comics, journalism -- in one place, for the English-reading consumer.
The Best American series has been the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction since 1915. For each volume, the very best pieces are selected by a leading writer in the field, making the Best American series the most respected--and most popular--of its kind. The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2005 includes pieces by Daniel Alaron, Aimee Bender, Dan Chaon, Daniel Clowes, Tish Durkin, Stephen Elliott, Al Franken, Jhumpa Lahiri, Rattawut Lapcharoensap, Anders Nilsen, Georges Saunders, William T. Vollmann and others.
From Dave Eggers:For this year's edition of The Best American Nonrequired Reading, we wanted to expand the scope of the book to include shorter pieces, and fragments of stories, and transcripts, screenplays, television scripts -- lots of things that we hadn't included before. Our publisher readily agreed, and so you'll see that this year's edition is far more eclectic in form than previous editions. Along the way to making the book, we also came across a variety of things that didn't fit neatly anywhere, but which we felt should be included, so we conceived the front section, which is a loose Best American roundup of notable words and sentences from 2005. It is, like this book in general, obviously and completely incomplete, but might be interesting nevertheless.
A selection of the best writing, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and comics, published in American periodicals during 2006.
This brilliant collection highlights a bold mix of fiction, nonfiction, screenplays, television writing, and more alternative comics than ever. Compiled by Dave Eggers and students from his San Francisco writing center, contributors include Judy Budnitz, "The Onion, The Daily Show, This American Life," and George Packer.
A selection of the best writing, including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and comics, published in American periodicals during 2008, aimed at readers 15 and up.
The Best American Series®First, Best, and Best-SellingThe Best American series is the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction. For each volume, the very best pieces are selected by a leading writer in the field, making the Best American series the most respected--and most popular--of its kind. The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2011 includesDaniel Alarcón, Clare Beams, Sloane Crosley, Anthony Doerr, Neil Gaiman, Mohammed Hanif, Mac McClelland, Michael Paterniti, Olivier Schrauwen,Gary Shteyngart, and others
The Best American Series® First, Best, and Best-Selling The Best American series is the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction. Each volume's series editor selects notable works from hundreds of magazines, journals, and websites. A special guest editor, a leading writer in the field, then chooses the best twenty or so pieces to publish. This unique system has made the Best American series the most respected -- and most popular -- of its kind. The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2012 includes Kevin Brockmeier, Judy Budnitz, Junot Díaz, Louise Erdrich, Nora Krug, Julie Otsuka, Eric Puchner, George Saunders, Adrian Tomine, Jess Walter, and others
Dave Eggers and his students at the 826 Valencia and 826 Michigan writing labs compile fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and comics, as well as category-defying gems that have become one of the hallmarks of this lively collection.
The Circle is the exhilarating new novel from Dave Eggers, bestselling author of A Hologram for the King, a finalist for the National Book Award. When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world's most powerful internet company, she feels she's been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links users' personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency. As Mae tours the open-plan office spaces, the towering glass dining facilities, the cozy dorms for those who spend nights at work, she is thrilled with the company's modernity and activity. There are parties that last through the night, there are famous musicians playing on the lawn, there are athletic activities and clubs and brunches, and even an aquarium of rare fish retrieved from the Marianas Trench by the CEO. Mae can't believe her luck, her great fortune to work for the most influential company in the world--even as life beyond the campus grows distant, even as a strange encounter with a colleague leaves her shaken, even as her role at the Circle becomes increasingly public. What begins as the captivating story of one woman's ambition and idealism soon becomes a heart-racing novel of suspense, raising questions about memory, history, privacy, democracy, and the limits of human knowledge.From the Hardcover edition.
El día que Mae Holland es contratada para trabajar en el Círculo, la empresa de internet más influyente del mundo, sabe que se le ha concedido la oportunidad de su vida.A través de un innovador sistema operativo, el Círculo unifica direcciones de email, perfiles de redes sociales, operaciones bancarias y contraseñas de usuarios dando lugar a una única identidad virtual y veraz, en pos de una nueva era de civilidad y transparencia. Mae está entusiasmada con la modernidad y la actividad de la compañía, las espaciosas oficinas de diseño, las cafeterías acristaladas y las acogedoras instalaciones del campus. Cada día se celebran fiestas, conciertos al aire libre y actividades deportivas. Hay clubs de todo tipo, e incluso puede visitarse un exclusivo acuario de peces exóticos de la fosa de las Marianas. Mae se siente afortunada de formar parte del centro del mundo, a pesar de que se aleje cada vez más de su vida fuera del campus y de que su rol dentro del Círculo acabe siendo del dominio público.Lo que empieza como la fascinante historia de ambición e idealismo de una mujer se convierte en una trepidante novela de suspense que plantea cuestiones tan vitales como la memoria, el pasado, la privacidad, la democracia y los límites del conocimiento humano.
Now more than ever, Americans are troubled by questions. As sweaty modernity thrusts itself upon us, the veil of ignorance that cloaked our nation hangs in tatters, tattered tatters. Our "funny bones" are neither fun nor bony. Glum is the new giddy, and the old giddy wasn't too giddy to begin with. What can be done to stop this relentless march of drabbery? Nothing. But perhaps this book can be used to dull the pain. Included herein: The Ten Worst Films of All Time, as Reviewed by Ezra Pound over Italian Radio Unused Audio Commentary by Howard Zinn and Noam Chomsky, Recorded Summer 2002, forThe Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the RingDVD (Platinum Series Extended Edition), Part One. How Important Moments in My Life Would Have Been Different If I Was Shot in the Stomach My Beard, Reviewed Circumstances under Which I Would Have Sex with Some of My Fellow Jurors Words That Would Make Nice Names for Babies, If It Weren't for Their Unsuitable Meanings As a Porn Movie Titler, I May Lack Promise Ineffective Ways to Subdue a Jaguar Eleven Lunch Meats I Have Invented Four Things I Would Have Said to Sylvia Plath if I Had Been Her Boyfriend And much, much more, including 20 brilliant new lists . . .
Norman Mailer's Pulitzer Prize-winning and unforgettable classic about convicted killer Gary Gilmore now in a brand-new edition.Arguably the greatest book from America's most heroically ambitious writer, THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG follows the short, blighted life of Gary Gilmore who became famous after he robbed two men in 1976 and killed them in cold blood. After being tried and convicted, he immediately insisted on being executed for his crime. To do so, he fought a system that seemed intent on keeping him alive long after it had sentenced him to death. And that fight for the right to die is what made him famous.Mailer tells not only Gilmore's story, but those of the men and women caught in the web of his life and drawn into his procession toward the firing squad. All with implacable authority, steely compassion, and a restraint that evokes the parched landscape and stern theology of Gilmore's Utah. THE EXECUTIONER'S SONG is a trip down the wrong side of the tracks to the deepest source of American loneliness and violence. It is a towering achievement-impossible to put down, impossible to forget.
The literary sensation of the year, a book that redefines both family and narrative for the twenty-first century. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius is the moving memoir of a college senior who, in the space of five weeks, loses both of his parents to cancer and inherits his eight-year-old brother. Here is an exhilarating debut that manages to be simultaneously hilarious and wildly inventive as well as a deeply heartfelt story of the love that holds a family together. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius is an instant classic that will be read in paperback for decades to come.
In a rising Saudi Arabian city, far from weary, recession-scarred America, a struggling businessman pursues a last-ditch attempt to stave off foreclosure, pay his daughter's college tuition, and finally do something great. In A Hologram for the King, Dave Eggers takes us around the world to show how one man fights to hold himself and his splintering family together in the face of the global economy's gale-force winds. This taut, richly layered, and elegiac novel is a powerful evocation of our contemporary moment - and a moving story of how we got here.
In a rising Saudi Arabian city, far from weary, recession-scarred America, a struggling businessman pursues a last-ditch attempt to stave off foreclosure, pay his daughter's college tuition, and finally do something great. In A Hologram for the King, Dave Eggers takes us around the world to show how one man fights to hold himself and his splintering family together in the face of the global economy's gale-force winds. This taut, richly layered, and elegiac novel is a powerful evocation of our contemporary moment -- and a moving story of how we got here.
Estamos en 2010 y Alan Clay está en Yida esperando a reunirse con el rey Abdalá. Con más de cincuenta años, Alan se siente un fracasado. Y quizá lo sea: es un empresario norteamericano ahogado por las deudas, acosado por los acreedores y angustiado por la certeza de no poder pagar la matrícula de la universidad de su hija. Por si fuera poco, le ha aparecido un extraño bulto en el cuello y su ex mujer vive en estado de furia permanente. Esta reunión es su última oportunidad para darle un giro a su vida: si él y su equipo fueran capaces de venderle la idea al rey y conseguir el contrato...En Un holograma para el rey, Dave Eggers nos muestra la lucha de un hombre para mantenerse y mantener a su familia en los dificiles tiempos de la economía global. Esta novela intensa, rica en detalles y matices, es una valiente evocación del momento que vivimos, y la apasionante historia de cómo hemos llegado aquí.
"Another" "What It Means When a Crowd in a Faraway Nation Takes a Soldier Representing Your Own Nation, Shoots Him, Drags Him from His Vehicle and Then Mutilates Him in the Dust" "The Only Meaning of the Oil-Wet Water" "On Wanting to Have Three Walls Up Before She Gets Home" "Climbing to the Window, Pretending to Dance" "She Waits, Seething, Blooming" "Quiet" "Your Mother and I" "Naveed" "Notes for a Story of a Man Who Will Not Die Alone" "About the Man Who Began Flying After Meeting Her" "Up the Mountain Coming Down Slowly" "After I Was Thrown in the River and Before I Drowned" From the Trade Paperback edition.
In thirteen electrifying stories, our very first all-Latin-American issue takes on the crime story as a starting point, and expands to explore contemporary life from every angle-swinging from secret Venezuelan prisons to Uruguayan resorts to blood-drenched bedrooms in Mexico and Peru, and even, briefly, to Epcot Center and the Havana home of a Cuban transsexual named Amy Winehouse. Featuring contemporary writers from ten different countries-including Alejandro Zambra, Juan Pablo Villalobos, Andres Ressia Colino, Mariana Enriquez, and many more-McSweeney's 46 offers an essential cross-section of the troubles and temptations confronting the region today. It's crucial reading for anyone interested in the shifting topography of Latin American literature and Latin American life, and a collection of writing to rival anything we've assembled in years.
Millions of people have fled from conflicts and persecution in all parts of the Northeast African country of Sudan, and many thousands more have been enslaved as human spoils of war. Here, in their own words, men and women recount life before their displacement and the reasons for their flight, and provide insight on the major stations of the "refugee railroads" - the desert camps of Khartoum, the underground communities of Cairo, the humanitarian metropolis of Kakuma refugee camp, and the still-growing internally displaced persons camps in Darfur. Included are stories of escapes from the wars in Darfur and South Sudan, from political and religious persecution, and from abduction by paramilitary groups.
On September 30, 2003, Calvin was declared innocent and set free from Angola State Prison, after serving 22 years for a crime he did not commit. Like many other exonerees, Calvin experienced a new world that was not open to him. Hitting the streets without housing, money, or a change of clothes, exonerees across America are released only to fend for themselves. In the tradition of Studs Terkel's oral histories, this book collects the voices and stories of the exonerees for whom life - inside and out - is forever framed by extraordinary injustice
Since its initial publication and multiple reprints in hardcover in 2005, Teachers Have It Easy has attracted the attention of teachers nationwide, appearing on the New York Times extended bestseller list, C-SPAN, and NPR's Marketplace, in addition to receiving strong reviews nationwide. Now available for the first time in paperback, this groundbreaking book examines how bad policy makes teachers' lives miserable.Many teachers today must work two or more jobs to survive; they cannot afford to buy homes or raise families. Interweaving teachers' voices from across the country with hard-hitting facts and figures, this book is a clear-eyed view of the harsh realities of public school teaching, without chicken-soup-for-the-soul success stories.With a look at the problems of recruitment and retention, the myths of short workdays and endless summer vacations, the realities of the work week, and shocking examples of how society views America's teachers, Teachers Have It Easy explores the best ways to improve public education and transform our schools.
The Golden Gate Bridge is the most famous bridge in the world. It is also, not entirely coincidentally, the world's only bright-orange bridge. But it wasn't supposed to be that way.In this book, fellow bridge-lovers Dave Eggers and Tucker Nichols tell the story of how it happened-how a bridge that some people wanted to be red and white, and some people wanted to be yellow and black, and most people wanted simply to be gray, instead became, thanks to the vision and stick-to-itiveness of a few peculiar architects, one of the most memorable man-made objects ever created.Told with playful paper cut-outs and irresistible prose, This Bridge Will Not Be Gray is a joyful history lesson in picture-book form-a gorgeously crafted story that teaches us how beauty and inspiration tend to come from the most unexpected places. Sometimes you have to fight for what you believe in, even if it's just a color.
For ten years, Voice of Witness has illuminated contemporary human rights crises through its remarkable oral history book series. Founded by Dave Eggers, Lola Vollen and Mimi Lok, Voice of Witness has amplified the stories of hundreds of people impacted by some of the most crucial human rights crises of our time, including men and women living under oppressive regimes in Burma, Colombia, Sudan, and Zimbabwe; public housing residents and undocumented workers in the United States; and exploited workers around the globe. This selection of narratives from these remarkable men and women is many things: an astonishing record of human rights issues in the 21st century; a testament to the resilience and courage of the most marginalized among us; and an opportunity to better the understand the world we live in through human connection and a participatory vision of history.
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