issue #4

We Partied like It’s 2009

On Saturday night at the house of and we rolled out issue #4. It was a seriously good time, although I fear I made myself look like a dunce talking into little — I remember saying something about how the Paris Review may have more subscribers, but I have better hair than its editor. Which I don’t think is even true; from what I can tell in photographs, actually has a nice head of hair. I think I can sum up the party by saying that both NY Times deputy editor and Moira Darling, one of Brooklyn's premier knitters (she owns ), were both there. Also spotted: gonzo science writer (also with good hair, salt-and-pepper), memoirist (fabulous hair), journalist and master writing pedagogue (legendary beard), New Republic critic (precocious beard), award-winning science writer , memoirist and NHR board member (her hair is the stuff of urban legend), NHR contributor (her great hair is the least of her attributes).

Lest I forget: novelist short-story writer condom blogger noted chemist historian literature scholar and man-about-town Josh Safran.

At some point after the gin kicked in I was talking to somebody about Gay Talese’s about the Paris Review in its 1960s, Plimpton-edited glory days. As I remember the essay, Talese’s main point seems to be that while Plimpton, Mathiessen, and the others had some talent — especially for spotting other talent — their main genius was for creating community. Largely this was about parties at Plimpton’s place (where, Talese reports, women were treated like so much furniture), but more generally it was about using a magazine as the centerpiece of a world. As I was speaking these words last night, I realized — or hoped — that I could have been talking about NHR, right down to the middling talent of us editors.

Or such, at least, is the delusion-producing quality of gin.

A change is gonna come...

Hi all — No Monday review for the next week or two, while we refurbish the site with content from the forthcoming issue #4 (Laurie Colwin, Thisbe Nissen, Alice Quinn, David Orr, and many other elite types). Also, when we go back up, the site will have a new, group-bloggy-format, with far more frequent postings. We will still seek out unfairly neglected books, but we will also keep people posted on curios and sights seen in New Haven, and we'll have a dozen voices in the mix on a regular basis. Stay tuned...