The cover depicts, clockwise from the upper left,
Ian Frazier, Klaus Kinski in Werner Herzog’s film
Aguirre: The Wrath of God,
George Meyer, and Mary Lynn Rajskub.
Cover illustrations: Charles Burns!
VOL. 2, NO. 9

FULL TEXT
Idiots!
by Paul La Farge
A new introduction to the 1926 novel Moravagine by Blaise Cendrars, whose scariest alter ego was actually modernism’s biggest idiot.

Small Battles in a War of Attrition
by Stephen Elliott
Our president says he has made America better, richer, and safer. Never mind the lost jobs, torture scandals, and flaming fast food restaurants.

Lawrence, Aguirre, and the American Imperial Moment
by Jim Shepard
Tame the desert! Discover El Dorado! Invade Iraq! All it takes is a little suspension of disbelief.

Why Good Literature Makes Us Bad People
by Brock Clarke
Three debut novels agree: reading too much hurts more than it helps, and the life of the mind is no life at all.

The Believer Reading Group Guide for Bright Lights, Big City
by Chris Bachelder
McInerney’s first novel still reveals real pain, even though no one wears Ray-Bans anymore.

FULL TEXT
George Meyer
interviewed by Eric Spitznagel
The Simpsons’ silent architect remembers a time when hobos were hilarious and cynicism was on the way out.

Mary Lynn Rajskub
interviewed by Carrie Brownstein
On the pleasures, advantages, and victories that can come from embracing discomfort.

FULL TEXT
Ian Frazier
interviewed by Jason Roberts
The author of On the Rez discusses his ideal writing style and his ideal woman—though only one is “heavy with hot bloatum.”

David Means’s The Secret Goldfish
reviewed by Rebecca Donner

Adam Zagajewski’s A Defense of Ardor
reviewed by Christopher Byrd

Richard Emidio Melo’s Jokerman 8
reviewed by Alix Ohlin

Elana Greenfield’s At the Damascus Gate
reviewed by Christopher Kennedy

Selah Saterstrom’s The Pink Institution
reviewed by Margaret Wappler

D.A. Powell’s Cocktails
reviewed by Sarah Manguso

Underway
by Various

Light: Skechers S-Lights
by Kevin Smokler

The Dreamlife of William Poundstone
by William Poundstone
Seemingly brilliant ideas that occur to the slumbering author have no merit whatsoever in the morning.

Motel: Best Western Inn
by Nick Poppy

Stuff I’ve Been Reading
by Nick Hornby
This month: Nick Hornby entreats biographers and appreciates blockbusters.

Seksopolis
by Milana Vuković Runjić

Ground Frog’s Day: a new poem
by Dean Young

Schema: A Classification of Metaphorical Proverbs
by Neil Freeman

Four-Color Comics: “Gangway for Murder, Pt. IV”
by Michael Kupperman