It is Krugman v. Tanenhaus over at the New York Times, where Krugman’s new book, End this Depression Now! received a not-entirely-positive review in a forthcoming Sunday Times review that Krugman previewed and is already complaining about. Krugman says, ”The New York Times Book Review is run by Sam Tanenhaus, who is very much a neocon, and makes a point whenever a progressive comes out with a book to find someone who will attack it,” before dialing it down, “It’s not really an attack, but the reviewer is shocked at the lack of respect I show for ‘highly respected people.’” (The book was also called “distressingly thin” by Felix Salmon in the Times daily book coverage.)
Poet Jennifer Benka is leaving her post as the director of development and marketing for 826 National—the education program launched by Dave Eggers—to become the executive director of the Academy of American Poets.
Toronto author Sheila Heti’s new novel, How Should a Person Be?, is coming out next week, and people have questions (Heti is The Believer's interviews editor, so perhaps turnabout is fair play). They want to know if the book’s protagonist, Sheila, is “interchangeable” with the real Sheila. They want to know about her creative process. They want to know if she must torture herself to write. They want to know if the book falls into more of a philosophical than a literary tradition. And they want to know—you’ve guessed it—how should a person be? To this last query, Heti offers only these words: “Oh my God.” Heti will read from the book next Tuesday, June 19 at Brooklyn’s powerHouse Arena, and the novel is reviewed in the summer issue of Bookforum by Johanna Fateman.
Tonight at the Strand, the Paris Review begins its series of literary salons at the bookstore with a reading by Wallace Shawn and Martha Plimpton.
Critics Scott Esposito and Lauren Elkin have a new book on the movement of novelists, poets, and mathematicians known as Oulipo. The volume is called The End of OULIPO: An Attempt to Exhaust a Movement, and is due out this fall. Elkin recently described the book to us: “In his half, Scott looks at some contemporary inheritors to Georges Perec: Edouard Levé, Tom McCarthy, David Shields, Christian Bok. And in my half I look at the unserious, bourgeois, macho strand of the Oulipo that finds its fullest expression in the work of Hervé Le Tellier, who I suggest does not live up to the standard of philosophical seriousness that you find even in Perec's most ludic moments.”
The people will have have their say about e-book pricing (until June 25th).