The Trespassers

The Trespassers is a story told by sixteen-year-old Doran Satterfield, a North Carolinian spending July and August 2004 in New Jersey. Doran befriends a group of slightly older teenagers who occupy themselves during the long summer days by breaking into long-abandoned factories and taking photographs. MORE

And what is this novel ‘about’? It is about seeng the invisible, or, rather, seeing into the invisible: discerning hidden beauty not in inviolable perfection, but in the violations of imperfection, in things old and discarded and forgotten and broken. To tell it as succinctly as possible: The Trespassers is a work of art.
Cynthia Ozick

My homecoming was wrecked by the yellow police tape strung across the entrance. A padlock and iron chain and a keep out sign wheat pasted to the doorway reinforced the point. Fine print on the notice rehashed the dangers of abandoned buildings, and warned those who'd been inhabiting the factory that they were subject to fines. Well, go on, Mr. Policeman, shake me upside down; make the spare change bounce on the sidewalk. Spackle over every crack in the city, smooth it all out, knock down the hiding-places and force me into plain view; monitor my unruly head.
The Trespassers



Critics Poll XXIV — My Ballot, Part 2

The furthest thing from perfect, like everyone I know.


The front of Paramore gives you everything you need to know going in. The band is now a trio. Hayley Williams is on the right side and she isn’t looking directly at the camera; she’s trying to convince you that she isn’t the focus, but of course she is. It’s pitch black behind them ‘cuz they’re coming out of the darkness, see. They are stained with pigment like they’ve been to a paint party, which advertises their awareness of present trends and an allegiance to new wave. Also, they’re mad as hell and not going to take “it” anymore, where “it” is defined as opprobrium from anybody… MORE


Critics Poll XXIV — My Ballot, Part 1

A spectre from the American imagination: Yeezus.

On May 17, 2013, a man’s face appeared on the side of a building in the heart of the city. We recognized this man, but his face was defamiliarized by the context and the message. He began saying things that, for fear of getting called hypocritical, pop stars don’t ordinarily say. For instance, he said that materialism had made us slaves. He referred to the prison-industrial complex and the drug war as tools of underclass control. The images he used were violent: he alluded to lynchings, surveillance, slavery, forced miscegenation, institutional racism. It was designed to shake you up. It was a transmission from within the entertainment industry, but it did not… MORE


Critics Poll XXIV: Miscellaneous Categories

The Front Bottoms: Sella and Uychich use the facilities.

The miscellaneous categories section is usually a hoot — a place to blow off steam for eight thousand words or so. But this year, it cannot be, as Matthew Sweet once put it, 100 per cent fun. Negative categories lead to mentions of Miley Cyrus, and mentions of Miley Cyrus leads to writing about Miley Cyrus, and there was nothing I enjoyed less about 2013 than writing about Miley Cyrus.

Now you might think that as a card carrying member of the news biz — a fellow who literally carries a NJPA card around all day — I would be happy as hell for the existence of Miley Cyrus, a… MORE