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Knowing All The Way

By From the November 2013 issue

Knowledge and Power: The Information Theory of Capitalism and How It Is Revolutionizing Our WorldBy George Gilder(Regnery, 400 pages, $27.95)
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Reader’s Digestion

By From the October 2013 issue

Steal the Menu: A Memoir of Forty Years in FoodBy Raymond Sokolov(Knopf, 242 pages, $25.95) LET US BEGIN with a happy ending. On the last page of his engaging and appetizing food memoir, author Raymond Sokolov sounds a note of culinary optimism. Having noted that 40 years ago there was “no first-rate American cheese, no radicchio, no world-class restaurant, no fresh foie gras, no Sichuan food and no top chef of native birth,” he concludes: At the beginning of my eighth decade, I take comfort from two great leaps forward in human life. As a passionate reader and writer, I exult in the scientific advances that have given me the computer and the Internet. As a physical creature chained to a wasting body, I look back with pride on the progress we have made in feeding ourselves and rejoice to think of the even better meals that lie ahead.
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Wagner Through A Blizzard

By From the October 2013 issue

Richard Wagner: A Life In MusicBy Martin Geck(University of Chicago Press, 423 pages, $35) THE JUNE 1980 issue of Esquire asked rhetorically on its cover: “Is anyone in America not writing a screenplay?” Similar queries could be posed about present-day Wagneriana: Is anyone in the world not writing a book on Wagner? According to an oft-quoted statistic, Wagner has inspired more literature than anyone in history save Christ and Napoleon (though if this was ever true, by now Hitler has probably pushed Wagner into fourth place and perhaps Napoleon into third). 
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Artistic Powers

By From the October 2013 issue

Suitable Accommodations: An Autobiographical Story of Family Life: The Letters of J.F. Powers, 1942-1963Edited by Katherine A. Powers(Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 480 pages, $35)
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Looking Through Orwell

By From the October 2013 issue

George Orwell: A Life in LettersSelected and Annotated by Peter Davison(Norton, 542 pages, $35) HOW MUCH OF the real George Orwell can be found in this new collection of letters is an open question. “Good prose,” he once wrote, “is like a window pane.” The good writer, he told us, will strive mightily to efface all artifice from any piece of writing, leaving behind only his gleaming sentences and the thoughts and images of which they are the direct and flawless expression. 
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Looking Through Orwell

By From the October 2013 issue

George Orwell: A Life in Letters
Selected and Annotated by Peter Davison
(Norton, 542 pages, $35)

HOW MUCH OF the real George Orwell can be found in this new collection of letters is an open question. “Good prose,” he once wrote, “is like a window pane.” The good writer, he told us, will strive mightily to efface all artifice from any piece of writing, leaving behind only his gleaming sentences and the thoughts and images of which they are the direct and flawless expression. 

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