Fiction

Company

By the time Diego moved in, I was forty and Diego fifty, our marginal existences long established. We ranted about the torture regime he once fled. We danced tangos.

'Thirteen Ways of Looking'

The stories in Colum McCann's collection each have thirteen sections that build slowly, surely toward denouement. By the end, a shift in perspective has taken place.

From the Russian, with Love

Why are there more versions of 'Anna Karenina' (1878) in 2016? According to some translators "the best" will never be available and so translation must continue.

'Finale: A Novel of the Reagan Years'

In his latest, Thomas Mallon turns real-life figures like Nixon, Reagan, and Nancy Reagan's astrologer into characters as skillfully as he creates fictional ones.

'Go Set a Watchman'

'Go Set Watchman' shows that though Atticus Finch defended a black man in court, he was still a man of his time—on the white citizens council, resisting integration.

Last Word: The 4 p.m. Blues

If today the world and the self are devalued, as Walker Percy has suggested, art—particularly the novel— can awaken the reader to their recovery from '4 p.m. blues.'

Letters | Anointing the Sick, a Callous Court, James Agee

Readers offer a remedy for the church's "unction dysfunction," another disturbing aspect of the Supreme Court's lethal-injection ruling, and more on James Agee.

'A God in Ruins'

Centered around the missing bomber pilot from 'Life After Life,' Atkinson's 'A God in Ruins' examines the interplay of real life and the life of the imagination.

Letters of James Agee to Father Flye

Spanning almost James Agee's entire lifetime, these letters between author and his priest cover alcohol, God, poetry, childhood, and a “mouthful of sweet potato.”

Bookmarks | How Racism Speaks

Claudia Rankine’s 'Citizen' and Jeffery Renard Allen’s 'Song of the Shank' both take up the issue of race in America in jagged and beautiful poetry and prose.

Commonweal Interviews

Featuring the best of our interviews—including Woody Allen, Jorge Luis Borges, Mary Gordon, (Sister) Elizabeth McAlister, Christian Wiman, and Mario Cuomo...

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Anne Enright's new novel suggests something simple—family, for good or ill, keeps forming us even when we try to escape it—but her prose constantly surprises.
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