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200 Posts in a Decade of Blogging: Part 2

By Peggy RosenthalOctober 24, 2018

I was invited to write for the Good Letters blog at its inception over ten years ago because of my long-time interest in writing about the experience of reading poetry: how the poetry I read becomes intertwined with my life, and vice versa. One such post, “This Solitude We Learn to Bear,” that reaches for…

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Why I’m Writing a Death Penalty Book for Teens

By Bryan BlissSeptember 14, 2017

1. I was standing in the kitchen of a rental house in the middle of forty acres of woods deep in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, when I told my agent I wanted to write about the death penalty, a topic that had chased me for over a decade. I’d only recently sold my first…

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Mysteries Sherlock Holmes Can’t Solve

By Brad FruhauffMarch 28, 2017

“No, you should definitely major in English,” I told our babysitter, a high-school senior from our church who is considering an English or Communications degree. “Fiction is just like faith,” I said, “it’s its own kind of knowledge that makes our lives richer.” I really believe that, though I have to renew my conviction from…

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ImageUpdate’s Top Ten of 2016

By ImageDecember 27, 2016

Every week, the Image staff curates a digital dispatch of compelling new books, music, artwork, and more, with personal recommendations, links from around the web, and a community message board with calls for art and job postings (not to mention exclusive access to Image discounts and VIP workshop registration!). We deliver these dispatches from the…

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A Conversation with Pinckney Benedict

By Mary Kenagy MitchellOctober 25, 2016

This post originally appeared as a web-exclusive feature accompanying Image journal issue 57. Mary Kenagy Mitchell for Image: You have a novel titled Dogs of God, and in your new story in Image, “The World, the Flesh, and the Devil,” a feral dog is one of the two main characters. What do dogs have to teach…

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Lucia Berlin: A Master of Catholic Fiction, Part 1

By Jenny ShankOctober 12, 2015

In September, Lucia Berlin’s posthumous collection of selected short stories A Manual for Cleaning Women hit the New York Times Best Seller list for hardcover fiction. Vice called Lucia Berlin “the greatest American writer you’ve never heard of.” Marie Claire predicted that this “highly semiautobiographical collection will catapult [Berlin] into a household name.” And John…

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The Contemporary Novel of Belief, Part 1

By Gregory WolfeJanuary 8, 2014

Writing a response to a published essay can be seen as public service, a way of contributing to the larger cultural conversation. On the other hand, writing several responses within a relatively short period of time can easily come across as carping or sour grapes. That consideration is very much at the forefront of my…

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Love in the Ruins II – Why Does God Permit Suffering?

By Caroline LangstonMay 6, 2008

For most of the week it has been raining. On Pascha we raised our candles—Christos Anesti! Christ is Risen!—and ate our lamb, sprawled out with friends drinking wine and eating sweet spicy tsoureki bread for hours, and fell early and exhausted into bed, the rain still thudding outside. Rain has been falling slantways against the…

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Why Reading Arthur C. Clarke is like Going to Church

By Santiago RamosApril 3, 2008

I think Reihan Salam is correct in dubbing the novels of the late Arthur C. Clarke “devotionals,” and his characters are indeed “wooden,” though that doesn’t take anything away from Clarke’s beguiling and seemingly unbounded imagination. This past summer, on whim, I picked up Clarke’s Rendezvous with Rama and thought it an impressive feat that…

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Obama, Faulkner, and the Open Wound

By Caroline LangstonMarch 21, 2008

“In the same spirit, on Rachel’s principles, I’d been pushed out like a blind finger, to probe a nonexistent space, a whiteboy integrating public schools which were just then being abandoned, which were becoming only rehearsals for prison. Her mistake was so beautiful, so stupid, so American.” Fortress of Solitude, Jonathan Lethem “I can no…

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