Magazine Review Week: GQ and Esquire
Obit shockers.

Magazine Review Week: Publishers Weekly

Back in my flush days as a public library assistant, I actually subscribed to Publishers Weekly magazine, which is a weekly publication and can get quite pricey.* But it didn't matter--I loved my PW, and read it from cover to cover each week without fail.

Now that I no longer subscribe, I haven't looked at a PW in a long time. So imagine my shock when I picked up an issue from the library and it felt like a shadow of its former self. It used to be quite the dense magazine, packed with articles and reviews and sales charts, and each issue actually had some heft. No longer...although I see the per-issue price is still a hefty $8.

It may be a shadow of its former self, but I still enjoy it as a magazine. It glories in its nerdy love of books, bookselling, and book reviewing; in the issue I read there was an article about the National Book Awards, how the Bible is a perpetual bestseller, a list of hot new books internationally, and the story of a small indie bookstore in Wisconsin. And, of course, there were the same old publisher ads (which I love to peruse) and the reviews, which I always found refreshingly honest, even though PW is a magazine that is definitely interested in selling books. There is no lame policy here (like there is at Booklist) of only printing positive reviews, and some of the negative book reviews in PW have been the ones I've enjoyed the most.

I won't be subscribing anymore. But I'll have to remember to pick PW up at the library once in a while again.

*This should tell you how much one can make as an editorial freelancer--when one can look back at one's library paycheck as the "flush days."