From Publishers Weekly
Boynton uses the clunky moniker "new new journalism" to describe a group of reporters today who write article- and book-length examinations of their subjects, often pioneering new reporting techniques (such as Adrian Nicole Leblanc's trick of leaving her tape recorder with her subjects when she went home as a way of getting them to open up without her around--a method that worked to wonderful effect in her Random Family
). Yet, Boynton points out, these writers also stay true to strict journalistic standards, unlike Tom Wolfe and the New Journalists, whose creative narrative methods broke all the rules. Many of the reporters Boynton highlights are also motivated by an activist impulse that informs but never overpowers their work. Boynton, the director of New York University's magazine journalism program, offers a nuts-and-bolts approach to understanding the way these reporters write, interviewing them on the smallest of details, such as how they organize their notes, what color pens they use and how they set ground rules with sources who aren't media savvy. Featuring lengthy discussions with star scribes such as William Langewiesche (American Ground
) and Michael Lewis (Moneyball
), this batch of discussions is a gold mine of technique, approach and philosophy for journalists, writers and close readers alike. (Mar.)
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*Starred Review* Building on the tradition of literary journalism--from nineteenth-century writers Lincoln Steffens and Stephen Crane through Tom Wolfe and Norman Mailer--the latest practitioners continue to apply keen skills of social observation and to enjoy public acclaim that promises continued support for this predominantly American craft. Boynton offers interviews with 19 writers who detail how and why they produce their work: Alex Kotlowitz tends to stumble onto his subjects, Jon Krakauer hates interviewing people in restaurants, Leon Dash refuses to become emotionally involved with his subjects, Jane Kramer appreciates the stylistic prose of literary nonfiction writers, Richard Preston is mechanically inept and prefers to take notes rather than use a tape recorder, and Ron Rosenbaum prefers the typewriter to the computer. Interviewees also include Gay Talese, William Finnegan, Susan Orlean, and Lawrence Weschler. Boynton asks the writers how they get their ideas, conduct their research and interviews, and begin the writing process as well as their takes on the future prospects for literary journalism. A fascinating book that makes the reader want to go out and get every book the writers have written as well as those mentioned as sources of inspiration. Vanessa BushCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved