Anselm Kiefer, Die berühmten Orden der Nacht (The Celebrated Orders of the Night), 1996. © Anselm Kiefer
Los Angeles Review of Books: This Week


Dear loyal readers, next week's newsletter will not arrive at its regular time on Sunday — but fear not, you’ll receive it on Tuesday, August 7. Until then, happy reading!


“‘Hey you, pretty girl, what’s the problem?’ Trump asked. ‘I need cash, and I need it fast.’ ‘That happens in the best of families,’ he grinned, grabbing her by the pussy. [Krantz did not really write those last five words.] ‘Can you sell my apartment, Donald? This week?’” Elizabeth Schambelan appraises Judith Krantz’s “weirdly vivid” 1986 novel I’ll Take Manhattan, in which our current president plays a major part.
“The fact that the libertarian wonderland of absolute sexual and economic freedom only ever worked in Rand’s melodramatic novels and helium-voiced Rush songs — that her philosophy of ‘Objectivism’ has never been successfully applied to actual governance — does not seem to cross the minds of libertarian true-believers.” Scott Timberg marvels at the weird persistence of Ayn Rand’s bad ideas.
“I wouldn’t say I’m motivated by a sense of duty or obligation, but I would say that I am motivated by a belief that individuals really matter, and what they do — or don’t do — can make a real difference.” Emily-Rose Baker interviews Philippe Sands, an international lawyer and the author of East West Street: On the Origins of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity.
On BLARBMartin Gelin remembers a drive around East L.A. with Jonathan Gold, who was “creating a new national narrative, with American food at the center.”


Karen Brissette is gripped by Megan Abbott’s latest novel, Give Me Your Hand.
William Deverell roams through Joshua Wheeler’s new collection of essays, Acid West, “a New Mexican whiptail of a book.”
Khanya Khondlo Mtshali takes issue with the “easy and showy moralism” of Morgan Jerkins’s This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America.


Diana Delgado talks to poet Ada Limón about taking risks, accepting grace, and holding the world’s pain.
Susan Blumberg-Kason reviews Our Time Will Come, a film by veteran Hong Kong director Ann Hui.
Samuel Collins considers the Staffordshire Hoard, the largest such deposit of Anglo-Saxon precious metal yet found.
LARB Channels and affiliates are a community of independent magazines supported by the Los Angeles Review of Books.


"Learned, beautifully written, and crafted with evident care, Tact is one of those works that, from cover to content, exemplifies the ethos that is its subject." On David Russell's new book: 


The LARB Quarterly Journal No. 19: Romance Issueis off press and you're invited to its launch party!

3806 Main Street
Culver City
6PM refreshments
7PM readings

The Romance Issue features a surreal short story by Kristen Gleason, Romance writer Cat Sebastian discussing the political power of the genre, Joanna Walsh on Anaïs Nin’s autobiographical erotica, Jonathan Alexander and the “Arts of Queer Friendship,” Onyinye Ihezukwu short story about a young African woman coming to terms with her own body and complicated sexuality, and more — this issue will surely delight.

Want a copy? Sign up for membership today!


Artists' books occupy a creative space between traditional books and contemporary works of art, challenging what a book can be. This highly visual and experiential presentation of some of the most lively and surprising works from the Research Institute's extensive collections focuses on artists' books that can be unpacked, unfolded, unfurled, or disassembled. They are made to be displayed on the wall or deployed as sculptures or installations. The exhibition seeks to provoke new inquiry into the nature of art and to highlight the essential role that books play in contemporary culture. The featured image in this week's newsletter is Anselm Kiefer, Die berühmten Orden der Nacht (The Celebrated Orders of the Night), 1996. © Anselm Kiefer, Artists and Their Books / Books and Their Artists runs June 26–October 28, 2018 at the Getty Research Institute.


The latest bookstore to join the Reckless Reader program is Stories, which "uses storytelling and literature as a foundation for all of the different kinds of art and creating that it hosts within its walls." Please enjoy the feature on Stories by one of our summer volunteers Sophia Marusic.

By becoming a member, you support both the Los Angeles Review of Books and independent booksellers. Independent bookstores are vital elements of a healthy local community. They are centers for intellectual discourse, cultural exchange, creative thought, and political debate. And we know that — supported by devoted customers and guided by active management and creative staff — bookstores can thrive.


LARB is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) and relies on reader support. Become a member today and we'll give you a variety of perks. Or make a one time, tax-deductible donation and you directly support an emerging writer, sponsor an event, provide a publishing workshop fellowship, and so much more. Donate online here or via post to the Los Angeles Review of Books, 6671 Sunset Blvd., Ste. 1521, Los Angeles, CA 90028. For all other inquiries, feel free to contact us at:
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