Sam Anderson's year in marginalia

Josh Spilker

Sam's notes on The Anthologist by Nicholson Baker / The Millions

I appreciate Sam Anderson's reviews over at New York Magazine. Usually on the spectrum of effusive, Sam takes time to illuminate a style or just appreciate the language. He never reviews what you expect him too, like some hackneyed movie critic, and he never comes off academic, though that's what he is. I think he just likes books.

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All of those qualities come across in his entry for The Millions' Year in Books 2010. Instead of reflecting on one or two books, Sam submits JPEGs of his margin notes for writers, both new and old, such as Don DeLillo, Flaubert, Jennifer Egan and Laura Hillenbrand. I stopped doing that when I got outta school, but thankfully Sam doesn't.

There's a lot of “eye-rolling” and plenty of funny comments too.

That being said, check out a few other of The Millions' excellent Year in Reading. It's a better take than just some stupid list of favorite books. Some good ones are Stephen Elliott's explanation on the year and Carolyn Kellogg's interaction with Rebecca Skloot.

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