Homely Abe

Today Lincoln is remembered mostly for his ideals. In his lifetime, people were fascinated with his appearance. This is Richard Wightman Fox's starting point.

Penelope Fitzgerald, by Hermione Lee

Penelope Fitzgerald wrote her first novel at 60 and became famous at 80. "How does she do it?" asked A. S. Byatt. Hermione Lee tries to answer.

Ask a mortician

Morticians haven't charged too much, they've done too much. With this precisely correct claim, Caitlin Doughty earns her contrarian stripes.

The Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, edited by Gianfranco Malafarina

In The Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, the darling among splendidly artistic cathedrals is stunningly brought to life.

Europe and the Islamic World, by John Tolan, Gilles Veinstein, and Henry Laurens

Europe and the Islamic World is a grandly ambitious attempt to sketch the interaction of faiths and regions from the seventh century to the present.

Signed, Sealed, Delivered, by Nina Sankovitch

Nina Sankovitch explores the meaning and value of letters in our post-postal age.

Lucy Stone, by Sally G. McMillen

Among those credited with propelling the women’s movement forward in the 19th century, one name is often left off the list. Lucy Stone was a passionate and fearless orator, an abolitionist, and a proponent of women’s civil and property rights.