Christmas at The New Yorker: Stories, Poems, Humor, and Art

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9781400061402: Christmas at The New Yorker: Stories, Poems, Humor, and Art

From the pages of America’s most in?uential magazine come eight decades of holiday cheer—plus the occasional comical coal in the stocking—in one incomparable collection. Sublime and ridiculous, sentimental and searing, Christmas at The New Yorker is a gift of great writing and drawing by literary legends and laugh-out-loud cartoonists.

Here are seasonal stories, poems, memoirs, and more, including such classics as John Cheever’s 1949 story “Christmas Is a Sad Season for the Poor,” about an elevator operator in a Park Avenue apartment building who experiences the ?ckle power of charity; John Updike’s “The Carol Sing,” in which a group of small-town carolers remember an exceptionally enthusiastic fellow singer (“How he would jubilate, how he would God-rest those merry gentlemen, how he would boom out when the male voices became King Wenceslas”); and Richard Ford’s acerbic and elegiac 1998 story “Crèche,” in which an unmarried Hollywood lawyer spends an unsettling holiday with her sister’s estranged husband and kids.

Here, too, are S. J. Perelman’s 1936 “Waiting for Santy,” a playlet in the style of Clifford Odets labor drama (the setting: “The sweatshop of Santa Claus, North Pole”), and Vladimir Nabokov’s heartbreaking 1975 story “Christ-mas,” in which a father grieving for his lost son in a world “ghastly with sadness” sees a tiny miracle on Christmas Eve.

And it wouldn’t be Christmas—or The New Yorker—without dozens of covers and cartoons by Addams, Arno, Chast, and others, or the mischievous verse of Roger Angell, Calvin Trillin, and Ogden Nash (“Do you know Mrs. Millard Fillmore Revere?/On her calendar, Christmas comes three hundred and sixty-?ve times a year”).

From Jazz Age to New Age, E. B. White to Garrison Keillor, these works represent eighty years of wonderful keepsakes for Christmas, from The New Yorker to you.

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From Booklist:

Christmas. Whether they love it or hate it, remember it fondly or shudder at the thought, readers are sure to find a kindred spirit wrapped up among the pages of this premiere holiday collection, part of the esteemed magazine's popular anthology series. Culled from the past 75 years, fiction, poetry, and memoir explore this most celebrated of holidays in all its guises. Gathering a merry cast of regular contributors, the list of notable authors and artists is as lengthy as the wish list of a starry-eyed five-year-old sitting on Santa's knee. From Alice Munro's poignant "The Turkey Season" to John O'Hara's urbane "Christmas Poem," the cream of the literary crop is represented. Strewn throughout are samples of favorite magazine features as well as its incomparable cartoons and signature covers. On Thurber and Trillin! On Keillor and Mencken! Add a dash of Nash and top it off with a frosting of White and you have a timeless gift of fine literature that is destined to last beyond the holiday season. Carol Haggas
Copyright American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review:

“[A] whimsically delicious collection . . . as uplifting as it is cynical. Even Scrooge would find it worth the moola.”
Entertainment Weekly

“No publication in history has ever delivered on [Christmas] delights better than has The New Yorker. And here in an astonishing richness of wit and dignity, acid and humane letters, is a complication of the best stuff.”
Baltimore Sun

“This collection truly shines. . . . A treasure trove of quality work from the 1920s into the twenty-first century with themes that accentuate the holiday’s timeless appeal.”
The Florida Times-Union

“An anthology of many charms.”
The New York Times

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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