Book critic for Harper's, New Yorker, etc. Author of A Thousand Darknesses. At work on Shirley Jackson bio: See also: @josephbraude

The True Lies of Totalitarian North Korea — When the videos of North Koreans weeping hysterically in the streets of Pyongyang circulated on YouTube last month in the wake of Kim Jong-il's death, few Western onlookers knew what to make of them.

'Liquidation': The Inhuman Condition

'Liquidation': The Inhuman Condition — LIQUIDATION By Imre Kertesz. Translated by Tim Wilkinson. 130 pp. Alfred A. Knopf. $22. THE scene: Budapest, a New Year's Eve party, sometime in the 1980's. Kingbitter, an editor at a prominent publishing house, watches a game of "Lager poker." The rules: "The players sit around the table and each person says where they have been.

Updates from the Shirley Jackson files

The photo is of the Everett Mansion in Bennington,...

Coming this September!

Let Me Tell You by Shirley Jackson |

Let Me Tell You by Shirley Jackson | — "Stunning." -O: The Oprah Magazine "Let us now-at last-celebrate dangerous women writers: how cheering to see justice done with [this collection of] Shirley Jackson's heretofore unpublished works-uniquely unsettling stories and ruthlessly barbed essays on domestic life." -Vanity Fair "[ Let Me Tell You] feels like an uncanny dollhouse: Everything perfectly rendered, but something deliciously not quite right."

‘A Manual for Cleaning Women,’ by Lucia Berlin

‘A Manual for Cleaning Women,’ by Lucia Berlin — Some short story writers - ­Chekhov, Alice Munro, William Trevor - sidle up and tap you gently on the shoulder: Come, they murmur, sit down, listen to what I have to say. Lucia Berlin spins you around, knocks you down and grinds your face into the dirt.

On the 50th anniversary of Shirley Jackson’s...

Forced into a Double Life

Forced into a Double Life — In The Girl from Human Street, Roger Cohen, a New York Times columnist whose previous books have investigated the stories of American POWs under the Nazis and the fate of four families in the former Yugoslavia, seeks to excavate the forces, both historical and personal, that shaped his own family.

The old Walloomsac Inn, formerly the Dewey Tavern....

The old Walloomsac Inn, formerly the Dewey Tavern.... — The old Walloomsac Inn, formerly the Dewey Tavern. Thomas Jefferson slept here in 1791. No, this was not one of Shirley Jackson’s models for Hill House, though it looks like it ought to have been. That one is coming … (at Old Bennington Historic District)
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May 05, 2016

"The book should be a ball of light in one's hand." Pound, quoted by @shamblanderson

May 01, 2016

Also, it has to be the ugliest highway in America. @NJTpkAuthority

May 01, 2016

It once took around 3hrs to drive Bmore-->NYC. Now never less than 4h30 thanks to constant traffic "slowdowns." @NJ@NJTpkAuthority

May 01, 2016

Food options are awful and rest stops so crowded I nursed my baby in the car. @NJTpkAuthority

May 01, 2016

Just need to vent for a minute. The NJ Tpke is an abomination. @NJTpkAuthority

Apr 27, 2016

@e_alexjung hmm, someone was just telling me how good it is ...

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