Skip to content
February 4, 2010 / Wendy Joan

Playing House Literary Picks of the Week

Good stories that got me through the workweek:

Tobias Zarius/LN'B Agent for New York Magazine

The Junior Meritocracy, New York Magazine

A (nearly) shocking look into New York City preschool testing for gifted programs, and what it takes for a 4-year-old to make the cut.

The Jihadist Next Door, The New York Times Magazine

Chilling and heartfelt account of Omar Hammami’s childhood in Alabama and transformation from a young southern Baptist to an al Shabab power player in Somalia.

Widow Basquiat

Jennifer Clement’s exquisite portrait of Suzanne, companion and lover of Jean-Michel Basquiat during the last years of his short life. Sex, drugs, the New York art scene in the 1980s and the creative nonfiction that I’m always craving more of.

“Chickens in the Road”

Chickens in the Road is a site I can’t stop cruising. Suzanne McMinn lives on a farm and seems to do it all, from candle-making to refurbishing furniture, from harvesting eggs to canning her own marmalade. She’s impressive, and I’m envious of her livestock.

‘Get Me Out’: Making Babies Through the Ages, Fresh Air

Earlier this week, Fresh Air host Terry Gross interviewed Randi Hutter Epstein, who recently authored Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth From the Garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank. I love stories that make me squirm in my seat. And even if you don’t, you’ll never think about forceps the same. . .

DIY, This American Life

This story, originally broadcast on This American Life in February 2005, is an extreme case of do-it-yourself. After four lawyers fail to defend an innocent man of a crime he didn’t commit, Carl King works to free his friend from 20 years of wrongful imprisonment–and succeeds.



Leave a Comment
  1. Amy Ignaczak / Feb 5 2010 8:11 am

    Hi Wend – I LOVE Chickens in the Road too!!! How funny that we both found the same site.

    • Wendy Joan / Feb 5 2010 9:12 am

      It’s been on my radar for a while, but I just started reading it this week. Such great stuff!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: