TNR would like to congratulate our music critic David Hajdu, whose book The Ten-Cent Plague: The Great Comic-Book Scare and How It Changed America was just named one of the 100 Notable Books of 2008 by The New York Times. Hajdu discussed the book with critic Douglas Wolk on TNR.com in April; click here to read their debate, and here to see a slideshow of the lurid comic-book covers that so inflamed America in the 1950s.
And while we're passing along thumbs-ups for our magazine's critics: Last week, Roger Ebert, in an essay bemoaning the state of film criticism, shared one counter-example with his readers. "My shining hero remains Stanley Kauffmann of The New Republic, as incisive and penetrating as ever at 92. I don't give him points for his age, which anyone can attain simply by living long enough, but for his criticism. Study any review and try to find a wrong or unnecessary word. There is your man for an intelligent 500-word review." Far be it from us to disagree--you can read Kaufmann's most recent reviews here, and find Kaufmann's 426 words on Frozen River here, which Ebert singled out as an exemplar of shortform criticism.