Writings from The New Yorker
By David Remnick
(Knopf, Hardcover, 9780307263582, 496pp.)
Publication Date: May 2, 2006
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From one of the most gifted and widely read journalists at work today, a volume that collects the best of his pieces from The New Yorker over the last fifteen years. David Remnick is fascinated by the men and women obsessed with creating the history of our era as well as those intent on chronicling it. Public figures rarely step away from their public selves. But Remnick has the ability to see the private self beneath the public façade and give readers startling glimpses of familiar figures: Al Gore attacking George Bush as he tries to make sense of his incomprehensible loss in the 2000 election, Tony Blair struggling for votes in the midst of the Iraq crisis.
In Reporting, Remnick returns to two countries he knows well, Russia and Israel. His account of Vladimir Putin contending with Gorbachev’s legacy affords a fresh view of postcommunist Russia; his appraisals of Benjamin Netanyahu, Ariel Sharon, and Sari Nusseibeh of the P.L.O. shed unexpected light on the Israeli-Palestinian crisis. Often, Remnick’s intent is to see someone up close, if only for a moment in time: Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn as he packs his bags to return to Russia, Václav Havel as he prepares to end his career as President of the Czech Republic.
Whether David Remnick is writing about Katharine Graham and the state of American newspapers, the literary visions of Philip Roth and Don DeLillo, or the decline and fall of Mike Tyson and the sport of boxing, his powers of observation, analysis, compassion, and wit are always present. Reporting is confirmation of Remnick’s skill at writing insightful and influential political and cultural narratives, and of his unique gift for bringing his subjects to life on the page with extraordinary clarity and depth.
David Remnick was a reporter for The Washington Post from 1982 to 1991 and joined the staff of The New Yorker in 1992. He has been the editor of the magazine since 1998.
“This collection of articles by David Remnick can stand as literature. . . . He treats the reader as an informed, intelligent equal.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Each piece is worth reading. From the first word of the preface to the last word of the final feature story, Reporting is captivating.”
—The Dallas-Ft. Worth Star Telegram
“A pleasure to read. The [essays] are intelligent and serious, but they're also perceptive and funny. Remnick mixes literature, politics and history and then tries to bring them all together into a meaningful whole.”
—Los Angeles Times
“The arrangement of pieces is so natural, and so symphonic, it's hard to recollect their discrete appearances: It seems as though Reporting is less an amalgamation of individual articles than it is a previously serialized volume at long last published whole.”
—The San Francisco Chronicle