For years, people have been guessing around at why, as a species, we love to do things like watch hideously depressing movies or read paralyzingly sad books. And while I’m sure your analyst could have a field day teasing apart just what, specifically, about your childhood led you to your particular sad-book propensity, I’m going to put forth a generally applicable theory and then leave you with a selection of titles that will make you hurt so good.
Every week, Read It Forward gathers the latest from the world of books to share with our community of readers. This week: 30 ways to celebrate National Poetry Month, the best literary hoaxes of all time, Susan Cheever implores writers to “Please Stop Writing!” & more.
Calling all RIFers who are in a men’s book group or a co-ed/couples book group: we want to share Steven Pressfield‘s latest thriller with you! To enter for the chance to win copies of The Profession for your men’s/co-ed book group, leave a comment below telling us a bit about your group.
“Every Day by the Sun provides a beautiful rendition of a girl’s coming of age among an unusual family,” says bookseller Richard Howarth of Square Books in Oxford, MS, “and is highly entertaining and interesting, a must for Faulknerphiles, for Oxonians, and for readers everywhere who enjoy fine books.”
I have been told that there are only two kinds of stories: a person leaves home, and a stranger comes to town. But as any true book lover knows, this overlooks the “I was stuck in a dirty Parisian hostel, and this was the only thing between me and the bed bugs” story, the “I just re-discovered this, and it’s even better the second time” story, the “I’ll turn out the light after just one more page” story, the “I don’t ever want this to end” story. For an editor, there is also the “if I don’t work on this book, I will die” story, a particularly rare breed that, like many things, you only know when you see it.
Calling all RIFers in book groups: we want to send you a Big Box O’ Books! To enter for the chance to win, leave a comment answering one (or more) of these questions about your group.