At the Paris Review, CJ Hauser reads Rebecca for the first time and is unsettled to recognize herself in the story. “Do you know what thrills me in so many of those gothic novels? When a woman sets fire to a house. Sometimes a house feels too haunted, too complicated, to live in anymore. Imagine the cleansing relief of burning the whole thing down. I’ve been there. I get it,” she writes. By the end of the essay, the Family of Origin author realizes that to avoid the second Mrs. de Winter’s fate, she has to allow the past and present to coexist. “Probably only a very troubled person would learn things of a personal or moral nature from du Maurier. But I did. Du Maurier showed me that promising a new partner that they will eclipse your past is an act of violence against the meaningful loves that existed before. It’s a fucking bloodbath, and we are the murderers, and we forgive ourselves for it, every time.”
Pop Chart Lab’s latest creation depicts some of the most famous cocktail-and-character pairings in literature and film. The gamut runs from Daisy Buchanan’s Mint Julep to The Dude’s White Russian. (Of course, the Preakness Stakes are this weekend, so really you should be drinking Black Eyed Susans.)
“Her poems shimmer most when they reflect on the yearning to rebel against the constrained space granted to women’s voices in literature and life.” On her 126th birthday, The Guardian argues that Edna St. Vincent Millay‘s poetry — not her reputation — should be remembered and celebrated. Pair with: an essay on being an uneasy, untamed women writer.