Joan Didion, looking nonplussed.

What the president’s reading: While on vacation with his family in Martha’s Vineyard, Obama was spotted carrying Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, Emma Donoghue’s Room, and The Bayou Trilogy, by Winter’s Bone author Daniel Woodrell.

Citing Chad Harbach’s $650,000 advance, New York magazine trumpets the return of big first book deals.

Dan Rather’s memoir, Summing Up, will be out next spring.

Vanessa Redgrave is going to narrate the audiobook for Joan Didion’s forthcoming memoir, Blue Nights.

"'Wittol'—a man who tolerates his wife's infidelity;" "'cyclogiro,' a type of aircraft propelled by rotating blades;" and "'alienism,' the study and treatment of mental illness"; are among the words the Collins English Dictionary has identified as "endangered."

The Decemberists’ new music video (directed by Parks and Recreation co-creator Michael Schur) features a game David Foster Wallace invented in Infinite Jest. rounds up the best magazine articles on the 2012 GOP presidential contenders.