John Hersey covered Hiroshima and America's race riots with empathy, courage, and profound humility. Jeremy Treglown's biography, Mr. Straight Arrow, should bring a new generation of readers to Hersey's work.
Looking upon Virginia Woolf with an immature and childish creative lust, writer/director Chanya Button and co-writer Eileen Atkins reduce her to a bland literary figure in Vita & Virginia, leaving us to remember the contrarian truth.
These days, when personal grief becomes a public performance on social media, it's heartening to have a book such as Katharine Smyth's All the Lives We Ever Lived, wherein deep introspection is given space and literature provides both solace and inspiration.
Saul Bellow has won many literary awards, including the Nobel, Pulitzer, and National Book Award. Yet Zachary Leader's thorough work, The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife, 1965-2005, a PopMatters pick, begins with Below asking himself, "Was I a man or was I a jerk?"