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This Week's Reading

What We’re Loving: Pippi, Airports, Purses

October 5, 2012 | by

If you’ve only ever seen the awkwardly acted 1969 film Pippi Longstocking, in which Pippi tokes up with her young friends (not to mention Peppi Dlinnyychulok, the very weird Soviet version), you’re in for a treat. In the late fifties, Pippi author Astrid Lindgren published a comic strip about her precocious young heroine in the Swedish children’s magazine Humpty Dumpty. Drawn & Quarterly is bringing these strips to the U.S. for the first time ever, and while they’re fun to read, the best part—hands down—is Ingrid Vang Nyman's art. Relying on bold blocks of color and bright, simple designs, the panels are midcentury children’s art at its finest. —Nicole Rudick

What would you do if you were a passenger in a hijacked plane that circles the Dallas metropolitan area for over twenty years? An interesting question, to say the least, and one Manuel Gonazales proposes in the first story, “Pilot, Copilot, Writer,” in his Borgesian debut, The Miniature Wife: and Other Stories. However, instead of dwelling on the fantastical and farfetched elements of the plot, Gonzales concentrates on the interactions between the passengers, the emotions that birth from the subtle tragedy of plane travel that extends well beyond some of the character’s years. The routines of ordinary life never seemed so extraordinary. —Justin Alvarez

If you’re looking for an activity that will simultaneously sate your cravings for television and literature, try browsing Slaughterhouse90210, the three-year-old blog hatched from the alarmingly literate mind of Maris Kreizman. She captions stills from TV shows with pithily apt quotes from books; imagine Hannah Horvath paired with Oscar Wilde, David Lynch with Dostoevsky, and Louis C.K. with Joyce Carol Oates. The pairings are both hilarious and poignant, often hinting at the inner lives we would like to imagine our favorite small-screen characters have. —Emma Goldhammer

If you find yourself within a million miles of the mid-south next weekend then stop in my hometown of Nashville and bask in The Southern Festival of Books, if only so I may live vicariously through you. This three-day lit geekout rivals anything of its kind in the Great White North: the scope of stunning writers exceeds even my prodigious capacity to namedrop. Think the delightful Brooklyn Book Festival, but way more. And with better food. And R. L. Stine, apparently. Send pictures, and tell my dog I say hi. —Samuel Fox

I have never really understood the appeal handbags hold for some women, so I was amazed at how engaging I found Judith Clark’s Handbags: The Making of a Museum. While it’s a beautiful book filled with pictures, I found the history of the purse, as both object, status signifier, and totem, the most interesting part. And, yes there really is a museum of bags. —Sadie Stein

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1 Comments

  1. best christmas gifts | October 6, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    Loved the book too

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