Category Archives: Cliff Recommends

All the great authors will tell you that to be a successful writer, you need to read, read, read. Every novel has something to teach you – even if you are a nonfiction writer, and especially if you write narrative nonfiction. I read two novels a week, secondly for pleasure, and firstly for edification.


Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk Ben Fountain For the first time in countless years I read a book twice – back to back – it was that good. So good I wanted to experience it again. Every note it hits is perfect. It is one of the most cleverly descriptive books I’ve read – not […]

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Beat the Reaper

Beat The Reaper (Josh Bazell). The protagonist is a doctor who’s in Witness Protection because he used to be a hit man. BTR has my all-time favorite opening paragraph:           So I’m on my way to work and I stop to watch a pigeon fight a rat in the snow, and […]

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