David L. Ulin
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About David L. Ulin
David L. Ulin is the author, most recently, of the novel "Ear to the Ground." A 2015 Guggenheim Fellow, his other books include: "Sidewalking: Coming to Terms with Los Angeles," shortlisted for the PEN/Diamonstein-Spielvogel Award for the Art of the Essay; "Labyrinth"; "The Lost Art of Reading: Why Books Matter in a Distracted Time"; and "The Myth of Solid Ground: Earthquakes, Prediction, and the Fault Line Between Reason and Faith," which was selected as a best book of the year by the Chicago Tribune and the San Francisco Chronicle.
He is also the editor of three anthologies: "Cape Cod Noir"; "Another City: Writing from Los Angeles"; and the Library of America's "Writing Los Angeles: A Literary Anthology," which won a California Book Award. His writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times (where he spent ten years as book editor and book critic), The Atlantic Monthly, The Nation, The New York Times, Bookforum, The Paris Review, Black Clock, Virginia Quarterly Review, AGNI, Zyzzyva, Columbia Journalism Review, and on National Public Radio's All Things Considered.
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Lee Child recruits Joyce Carol Oates, Jonathan Ames, Cara Black, and others to reveal nicotine's scintillating alter egos.
"Typically for Akashic--publisher of the terrific Noir series--the stories approach the subject matter from an impressive number of angles...Akashic has yet to produce a dull anthology, and this one is especially good."
"Sixteen tributes to America's guiltiest pleasure...Even confirmed anti-smokers will find something to savor."
"The most successful entries delve bone-deep into addiction, as characters smoke to smother physical pain, loneliness, and their days...These writers capture the mental gymnastics behind the characters' bad decisions, and the joy such bad decisions can bring."
In recent years, nicotine has become as verboten as many hard drugs. The literary styles in this volume are as varied as the moral quandaries herein, and the authors have successfully unleashed their incandescent imaginations on the subject matter, fashioning an immensely addictive collection.
Featuring brand-new stories by: Lee Child, Joyce Carol Oates, Jonathan Ames, Eric Bogosian, Achy Obejas, Michael Imperioli, Hannah Tinti, Ariel Gore, Bernice L. McFadden, Cara Black, Christopher Sorrentino, David L. Ulin, Jerry Stahl, Lauren Sanders, Peter Kimani, and Robert Arellano.
From the introduction by Lee Child:
Food scientists have discovered a complex compound naturally present in, among other things, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants. The compound offers us a number of benefits: it improves our fine motor skills; it increases our attention spans; it improves our cognitive abilities; it improves our long- and short-term memories; it lessens depression...In and of itself, it has no real downside. It's called nicotine. We should all get some.
The problem is the delivery system...The most efficient way is to burn dried tobacco leaves and inhale the smoke. Ten seconds later, the compound is in your brain, doing good in all its various ways. Unfortunately, the rest of the smoke doesn't do good. And therein lies a great mystery of human behavior. To get the good, we risk the bad. Or we prohibit ourselves the good, for fear of the bad. Which approach makes more sense?
The former LA Times book critic expands his short book, rich in ideas, on the consequence of reading to include the considerations of fake news, siloed information, and the connections between critical thinking as the key component of engaged citizenship and resistance. Here is the case for reading as a political act in both public and private gestures, and for the ways it enlarges the world and our frames of reference, all the while keeping us engaged.
"A book full of cries in the dark, heavy drinking in the thin gray light of winter, and other dark poses. In other words, the stories sneak in the back screen door of those summer cottages after Labor Day, after all the tourists have gone home and Cape Codders of the authors' imagination drop their masks and their guards. It's a fun read, a little like tracing the shoreline of a not-quite-familiar coast."
"David L. Ulin has put together a malicious collection of short stories that will stay with you long after you return home safe."
--The Cult: The Official Chuck Palahniuk Website
Includes brand-new stories by Paul Tremblay, Seth Greenland, Ben Greenman, Fred G. Leebron, David L. Ulin, Dana Cameron, Kaylie Jones, and others.
Los Angeles Times book critic David L. Ulin has been vacationing in Cape Cod every summer since he was a boy. He knows the terrain inside and out; enough to identify the squalid underbelly of this allegedly idyllic location. His editing prowess is a perfect match for this fine volume.
David L. Ulin is book critic of the Los Angeles Times. From 2005 to 2010, he was the paper's book editor. He is the author of The Myth of Solid Ground: Earthquakes, Prediction, and the Fault Line Between Reason and Faith, and is the editor of Another City: Writing from Los Angeles and Writing Los Angeles: A Literary Anthology, which won a 2002 California Book Award. He has written for the Atlantic Monthly, The Nation, The New York Times Book Review, and National Public Radio’s All Things Considered.
It's only a matter of time before Charlie sees the "Big One" looming on the horizon. When Charlie alerts his boss at the Center, he is the one that's in for a shock: this is exactly what the Center was hoping for.
With the news leaked, everyone's suddenly looking to produce the next disaster blockbuster. One of the few scripts Ian actually wrote, Ear to the Ground, happens to be about an earthquake disaster, and soon it's plucked from obscurity and given the fast track. But with a little bit of luck, Charlie may just foil everybody's plans. He just needs explosives, a helicopter, a little more time.
By award-winning writer and Los Angeles Times book critic David Ulin, Ear to the Ground is a rollicking visit back to the 1990s.