What is left when nothing else is: “Battleborn” by Claire Vaye Watkins.

In 1872, Mark Twain published “Roughing It,” chronicling, in his words, “several years of variegated vegabondizing,” some of it involving the silver mining spree in Nevada. In his prefatory to the volume, Twain wrote that silver rush in the state was “a curious episode, in some respects; the only one, of its peculiar kind, that […]

What Denis Johnson and Hamlin Garland Have in Common

What do Denis Johnson and Hamlin Garland—two writers seemingly otherwise unrelated—have in common? Johnson is the lit-famous author of  Tree of Smoke: A Novel and Jesus’ Son: Stories. Hamlin Garland used to be quite famous, but now rarely appears outside of footnotes in anthologies. Johnson’s Train Dreams: A Novella was a Pulitzer finalist this year; Garland […]