I ought to take more surveys, because they force me to concentrate and have a way of turning postable. It’s fun to try to figure out how many hardcovers I’ve bought recently and whether I buy gin often enough to qualify for “not that often but sometimes”, and it’s weird to see into the minds of the marketing people who care about it. Here’s a paragraph I turned in describing what I think of the London Review of Books:
I think it’s great. I value very highly the LRB’s attention to serious issues and works of philosophy, history, and politics. Where else would I read about prosopography? My main point of comparison for the LRB is the New York Review, and in this respect I think the LRB is superior. If I am not mistaken, this is because the LRB selects more scholarly books for review and occasionally allows reviewers greater space. I also appreciate the occasional departure from usual form represented by authors such as Eliot Weinberger or a diary on fan fiction. Thanks!
To be fair, I should say that the NYR strikes me as wider ranging and superior in its coverage of American politics and culture. It also has more pictures!
If I had to choose one, I’d probably go with the LRB. In addition to what I said above, I like the LRB’s archive and the electronic version a lot. I also have access to both magazines at my institution, so it’s not really such a terrible prospect.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you can look forward to a post on Nicholson Baker’s essays sometime, and maybe even a series on my preposterously uninformed reading of Roger Penrose’s The Road to Reality.