On Oct. 10, 1896, after years of robust literary coverage at The New York Times, the paper published the first issue of the Book Review.
In the 125 years since, that coverage has broadened and deepened. The Book Review has become a lens through which to view not just literature but the world at large, with scholars and thinkers weighing in on all of the people and issues and subjects covered in books on philosophy, art, science, economics, history and more.
In many ways, the Book Review’s history is that of American letters, and we’ll be using our 125th anniversary this year to celebrate and examine that history over the coming months. In essays, photo stories, timelines and other formats, we’ll highlight the books and authors that made it all possible.
Because, really, writers are at the heart of everything we do. Pairing a book with the right reviewer is a challenge, one that we relish. And we’ve been fortunate to feature the writing of so many illustrious figures in our pages — novelists, musicians, presidents, Nobel winners, CEOs, poets, playwrights — all offering their insights with wit and flair. Here are 25 of them.
H.G. Wells | Vladimir Nabokov | Tennessee Williams | Patricia Highsmith| Shirley Jackson | Eudora Welty | Langston Hughes | Dorothy Parker | John F. Kennedy | Nora Ephron | Toni Morrison | John Kenneth Galbraith | Nikki Giovanni | James Baldwin | Kurt Vonnegut Jr. | Joan Didion | Derek Walcott | Margaret Atwood | Ursula K. Le Guin | Stephen King | Jhumpa Lahiri | Mario Vargas Llosa | Colson Whitehead | Patti Smith | Bill Gates
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