Daily Dispatches
Journalist Malcolm Gladwell
Associated Press/Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision
Journalist Malcolm Gladwell

Web Reads: Literary hatchet jobs and telling the good news


Poison pens. The snarky book review has been around for a long time. One group honors “literary criticism's most poisonous pens” with “The Hatchet Job of the Year Award,” which celebrates the art of the scathing book review. Not everyone is a fan of the hatchet job. Bloomberg columnist Megan McArdle explains why she tries not to write bad reviews. And New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell adds his perspective.

Return to faith. Gladwell made news recently with an interview in which he explained how his most recent book brought him back to the Mennonite faith of his childhood.

Rebuilding. Good news stories from Detroit are rare. This photo essay about a guy who bought a house for $500 isn’t exactly good news, but it shows through photos and excellent writing what it takes to rebuild community—a necessary step in the rebuilding of a decimated city.

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Christian news. Since Fox News contributor Kirsten Powers’ conversion to Christianity, she has increasingly turned her considerable journalistic talent to important Christian stories, publishing them where they reach readers who are unlikely to encounter the news elsewhere. Here’s an excellent story detailing “The New Age of Christian Martyrdom.”

Writing tools. This comprehensive list of 100 websites for writers offers writers encouragement, instruction, and tools for almost every aspect of their work, including freelancing, marketing, agents, copyediting, and craft. 

Susan Olasky
Susan Olasky

Susan pens book reviews and other articles for WORLD as a senior writer and has authored eight historical novels for children. Susan and her husband Marvin live in Asheville, N.C. Follow Susan on Twitter @susanolasky.


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