State by State
A Panoramic Portrait of America
Publication Date: October 2009
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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See America with 50 of Our Finest, Funniest, and Foremost Writers Anthony Bourdain chases the fumigation truck in Bergen County, New Jersey
Dave Eggers tells it straight: Illinois is Number 1
Louise Erdrich loses her bikini top in North Dakota
Jonathan Franzen gets waylaid by New York's publicist...and personal attorney...and historian...and geologist
John Hodgman explains why there is no such thing as a "Massachusettsean"
Edward P. Jones makes the case: D.C. should be a state!
Jhumpa Lahiri declares her reckless love for the Rhode Island coast
Rick Moody explores the dark heart of Connecticut's Merritt Parkway, exit by exit
Ann Patchett makes a pilgrimage to the Civil War site at Shiloh, Tennessee
William T. Vollmann visits a San Francisco S&M club and Many More!
Matt Weiland is the Deputy Editor of The Paris Review. He has been an editor at Granta, The Baffler and The New Press, and he oversaw a documentary radio unit at NPR. His writing has appeared in the New York Times Book Review, New York Observer, The Nation and The New Republic. He is the co-editor, with Sean Wilsey, of The Thinking Fan's Guide to the World Cup and, with Thomas Frank, of Commodify Your Dissent: The Business of Culture in the New Gilded Age. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son.
“[State by State] is a funny, moving, rousing collection, greater than the sum of its excellent parts, a convention of literary superdelegates, each one boisterously nominating his or her piece of the Republic.”
-New York Times Book Review
“This fascinating collection, inspired by guides in the 1930s and 1940s, includes original essays on each of the states by some of the country’s finest (mostly younger) writers.”
“Self-consciously modeled after state guides sponsored by the Federal Writers’ Project in the 1930s, this ambitious effort features a terrific roster of writers.”
“Odds are, reading STATE BY STATE, that you’ll fall for every state a little, even if they remain tremendously hard to explain.”
-Los Angeles Times
“This eclectic collection of essays describing the ordinary people and places within our 50 states is as essential as the Rand McNally atlas. Alternately brash and bashful...each literary foray in State by State is well worth the trip. Grade: A.”
“An enjoyable journey: 50 essays, cartoons and mini-plays, plus an afterward about Washington, DC and a fascinating appendix…all in all, it makes one yearn for a driver’s license and a stretch of open highway.”
-New York Post
“Ideal nightstand reading and a welcome reminder of the pluribus behind the unum.”