last week

What do Americans read the most?

When you read, what floats your boat? If you said “mystery and thrillers,” “history,” or “biographies and memoirs,” you’re in good company. According to the best data I can locate online, those three categories are at the top of the list of all genres in popularity among American readers. To prove the point, here from […]

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last week

Female spies and saboteurs in World War II

For decades, the pivotal role many women played in codebreaking, espionage, and the Resistance in World War II went largely unappreciated. But with the advent of the twenty-first century, historians have begun bringing more of their extraordinary stories to light. In some cases, what they write reflects newly declassified files. But in others it’s merely […]

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4 weeks ago

Seven common misconceptions about World War II

For many years, I’ve been reading a great deal about World War II, both fiction and nonfiction. And that reading is reflected in the reviews I’ve collected at 5 top nonfiction books about World War II and The 10 best novels about World War II, both of which include dozens of runners-up. But in the […]

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8 months ago

The 10 most consequential events of World War II

The virtue of history is that it affords us perspective—not just the distance that the passage of time occasions but the ability to grasp the importance of events that may have been only dimly understood at the time. What might seem of paramount importance to contemporaries may fade into obscurity as the years go by. […]

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10 months ago

Literary critics say these are the best books of 2019

If you’re a bibliophile, you may visit the website of Lit Hub or read one of its newsletters. I do. I get my fix of literary comment and criticism on a daily basis from Lit Hub. And I rushed to click through to The Ultimate Best Books of 2019 List by Emily Temple (Lit Hub, December 11, […]

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last year

Which authors make the most money?

We all know some writers make it, and some don’t. In fact, most people who are gripped with the obsession to write a book never make a dime from it, if they can even get it into print. (Even self-publishing isn’t all that easy for the technologically challenged, as it turns out.) But what’s not […]

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3 years ago

Even more fun facts: which authors have written the most books?

    You’re gonna love this. Once upon a time, back in the distant reaches of the twentieth century—well, actually it was 1984—one of my clients assigned me to ghostwrite a fundraising letter that Isaac Asimov had agreed to sign. I approached the task with some trepidation, both because I knew Asimov’s reputation as a […]

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3 years ago

Yet more fun facts: who is the world’s bestselling author?

Chances are, any book that you might write will never make you the world’s bestselling author. Sales for most books written today are pathetically low. As I noted in an earlier post, the average U.S. nonfiction book is now selling fewer than 250 copies per year and fewer than 2,000 copies over its lifetime. And […]

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