The Best American Magazine Writing 2002

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9780060515720: The Best American Magazine Writing 2002

A treasury of great magazine pieces drawn from the winners of and finalists for the prestigious National Magazine Awards

In the world of magazines, no recognition is more highly coveted than an "Ellie," the National Magazine Award presented by the American Society of Magazine Editors. This is the magazine equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. Nominees and winners are chosen by hundreds of editors, educators, and art directors from more than a thousand submissions. These selections are among the very best of those.

The Best American Magazine Writing anthology puts between the covers of a single book some of the most outstanding writing by some of the most eminent writers in this country.

"My Father's Brain"
Jonathan Franzen, The New Yorker

"The Crash of EgyptAir 990"
William Langewiesche, The Atlantic Monthly

"Inside the Battle at Qala-i-Jangi"
Alex Perry, Time Magazine

"Dr. Daedalus"
Lauren Slater, Harper's Magazine

"Salt Chic"
Jeffrey Steingarten, Vogue

"Playing God on No Sleep"
Anna Quindlen, Newsweek

"Sullivan's Travels"
Michael Wolff, New York Magazine

"Moving"
Anne Fadiman, The American Scholar

And much more! Brilliant and illuminating, this book is for anyone who appreciates magazine writing and journalism at their highest level.

The American Society of Magazine Editors is the professional organization for editors of consumer magazines that are edited, published, and sold in the United States. It sponsors the National Magazine Awards in association with the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

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From Publishers Weekly:

The "Ellie" awards-the magazine equivalent of newspaper reporting's Pulitzers-are granted annually by the American Society of Magazine Editors to celebrate excellence in a variety of genres of magazine writing: reporting, features, profiles, commentary, criticism and fiction. Thus this third annual volume, which reprints some 19 finalist or winning entries, covers a remarkable range of topics and modes of treatment. Tom Junod's "Gone," about three Americans kidnapped in the Ecuadorian jungle, is a nail-biting cliffhanger and suggests miniseries possibilities, while Anne Fadiman's account of moving from the city to the country seems endlessly re-readable, embodying the essay form at its timeless best. Some of the pieces, like Mark Levine's "Killing Libby," an account of asbestos contamination, suggest future book-length treatment, while others, such as Jonathan Franzen's "My Father's Brain," have already been incorporated into other works (i.e., The Corrections). The most topical entries-e.g., William Langewiesche's depiction of the 1999 crash of EgyptAir Flight 990, Alex Perry's account of fighting in Afghanistan, Amy Wallace's profile of Variety editor Peter Bart, and Ken Auletta's study of Ted Turner-seem dated, while some more obscure entries-e.g., Lauren Slater's profile of a plastic surgeon, Steve Rushin's analysis of German drag racing, and Caitlin Flanagan's "Confessions of a Prep School College Counselor"-remain fresh and piquant. E.L. Doctorow's story about a murderous widow, the only fiction entry here, is a gem. While the Atlantic Monthly, the New Yorker and Esquire are predictably well represented, even constant readers of these magazines will appreciate having some of their best pieces in a more lasting format.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Excellent magazine articles reward in a unique way: in the time it takes to ride the bus to work, readers are transported to far-flung locales, educated, entertained, and immersed in story until looking up from the page provides a sense of dislocation. Riding home allows time enough for an entirely different trip. The latest anthology vetted by the American Society of Magazine Editors provides ample opportunities for these short-form transformations. In "Gone," Tom Junod retells the abduction of American workers in the Ecuadorian jungle in almost-flip, deceptively gripping style. William Langewiesche, in "The Crash of EgyptAir 990," uses both his knowledge as a pilot and his reporting chops to re-create a terrifying tragedy and bureaucracy's response. And Ken Auletta provides a fascinating, humanizing profile of Ted Turner, a media mogul in decline (or, judging from recent headlines, perhaps not). There are many more such journeys in this volume, proving what Sebastian Junger states in the introduction: "A truly great magazine piece erodes the illusion of psychological separateness that we are all tempted to hide behind." Keir Graff
Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved

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