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Books/Swarthmore Review

A tale of two time periods

At first glance, Donna Tartt seems to be the anti-Bret Easton Ellis. The two were friends, and dated briefly, as undergraduates at Bennington College. At school, Ellis and Tartt shared the manuscripts of their debuts-in-progress, manuscripts that would become “Less Than Zero” and “The Secret History.” “Less Than Zero”’s Clay returns from college in New… Keep Reading

Books/Swarthmore Review

Book review: 24/7

In “Digital Witness,” the first single of St. Vincent’s latest album, Annie Clark laments over a throbbing array of guitars: “What’s the point of even sleeping? / If I can’t show it, you can’t see me. / What’s the point of doing anything?” What Clark is not too subtly satirizing here is our seemingly endless… Keep Reading

Books/Swarthmore Review

Book review: The Franzen project

Jonathan Franzen’s reception at Swarthmore last spring was lukewarm. He spoke fatalistically of the social impact of fiction and disavowed the readings of his books that would point to any social messages. When he admitted that the one explicit goal of his latest novel, “Freedom,” was to give voice to the feline plight of the… Keep Reading

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