The Stacks Chat: Chip Brown

By Alex Belth Esquire Classic 2016 Chip Brown has long been one of the finest magazine writers we have. An exacting reporter and a deft stylist, Brown began under the tutelage of David Maraniss and Bob Woodward at The Washington Post and flourished as feature writer...

A Forgotten Pioneer of The New Journalism

By Alex Belth Esquire Classic October 2016 Fame is fleeting in all pop culture—movies, music, writing, sports: today’s stars, tomorrow’s Where Are They Now’s. This feels especially true in journalism. Who but a small group of nonfiction-loving nerds pays attention to...

The Stacks Chat: John Edgar Wideman

By Alex Belth Esquire Classic October 26, 2016 The story of Emmet Till is embedded in our public consciousness as one of the most notorious hate crimes of the century. What is lesser known—and what novelist John Edgar Wideman tackles with candor and humility in his...

The Stacks Chat: Alex Wolff

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader April 2018 The Library of America’s newest sports anthology, Basketball: Great Writing About America’s Game, is out and deserves a place on the shelf of any self-respecting hoops fan. We recently sat down with the book’s editor,...

Cartoon Country

By Cullen Murphy From Cartoon Country 2017 Click. That was my after-school job—pressing down on the shutter release—from around the age of six until sometime in my teens. My father had bought a Polaroid camera in 1949, soon after the first one came on the market, the...

Would You Be Mine? Could You Be Mine?

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader I’d heard nothing but good things about Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Morgan Neville’s new documentary about Fred Rogers. Plus, our pal Tom Junod is a featured talking head in the movie and I was excited for him to be a part of it. Tom, if...

The Summer in the City Game

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader With all due respect to the national pastime, summer is also time for hoops, especially of the pick-up variety. Of course, in the realm of basketball literature there is a whole rich subsection of writing devoted to the street game....

Grey’s Anatomy

By Elizabeth Kaye Playboy October 2010 I’m driving on Sunset Boule­vard, heading east, passing thickets of scarlet bougainvillea. I’m on my way to meet Sasha Grey, the 22-year-old star of countless adult films who doesn’t have breast implants, blonde hair or col­lagen...

Chuck Bowden and the Red Cadillac

By Luis Alberto Urrea From Red Caddy 2018 The License Plate Said “Hayduke”: Chuck Bowden and the Red Cadillac “I try to construct a theory of how a moral person should live in these circumstances, and how such a person should love.”   Charles Bowden, Desierto...

The Old Man and the Mule

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader Here is a good story from Second Wind: Memoirs of an Opinonated Man by Bill Russell with the historian Taylor Branch (1979, Random House; currently out-of-print). It’s about Russell’s grandfather and his mule, Kate. Russell’s family was...

Remember the Rhythm

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader Dig this—from Whitney Balliett’s book American Musicians: Fifty-Six Portraits in Jazz: The Cape Cod pianist Marie Marcus came to New York from Boston to do a radio show in 1932, when she was eighteen. Her experience had been...

Down and Out in Fat City

By Alex Belth The Stacks Reader “Sometimes you only get to win one championship.”—Leonard Gardner In 1969, Leonard Gardner’s novel Fat City was published. It a story about boxing and drinking in Stockton, California, about losers losing. “I have a strong sense of...