Jake Lamar

  • Bloodlines

    DO PEOPLE STILL REMEMBER Betty Broderick? She was the San Diego career stay-at-home mother—I see no oxymoron there—who killed her ex-husband, Dan, and his new wife in 1989. She tried to position herself as an Everywoman who’d been discarded for a younger, thinner model. But the stubborn fact remains that she drove to her ex’s home with a gun, then shot him and his wife while they slept. This came after a contentious separation and divorce that took several years, with plenty of bad behavior on both sides. The real-life details of the case are much worse than what was dramatized, quite memorably,

  • Fear of a Black President

    I sometimes think of Election Night 2008 as analogous to the first manned moon landing in 1969. Something that had seemed, just a few years earlier, imaginable only in speculative fiction had suddenly become real before our eyes. In both cases, an American achievement was celebrated by people around the world. Like Neil Armstrong’s “small step” on the lunar surface, the election of a black man to the highest office in the most powerful nation on earth seemed to expand human possibility. But within a couple of years, the public grew tired of moon shots and, after the sixth landing in 1972, NASA

  • Displaced Personhood

    One could say, with no snark intended, that back in the year 2000, twenty-nine-year-old Mohsin Hamid was the ultimate bourgeois bohemian. He had just published a well-received first novel. He lived on lovely Cornelia Street, in a corner of the West Village once inhabited by artists and writers but, by the dawn of the twenty-first century, affordable mainly to investment bankers and management consultants. As it happened, this debut novelist was also a management consultant. And in a deal of sugar-shock sweetness, his employer, McKinsey & Company—famous for overworking its bright young