Categories
Books Rap Reviews

A Deep Analysis of Lyrics That Tries to Be More – “What’s Good: Notes on Rap and Language” Reviewed

In the opening moments of the iconic track, “N.Y. State of Mind,” Nas almost mumbles, “I don’t know how to start this shit.”

It’s appropriate, almost poetic, that this line kept running through my head as I thought about how to approach this review because Daniel Levin Becker’s What’s Good: Notes on Rap and Language is all about lines and lyrics – how they’re created, how deep they go, how they get stuck in our heads, and, awkwardly, what they mean within the larger societal context.

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Books Longreads Rankings Reading Reviews

Chuck Klosterman’s Best Books

Photo by Christopher Pierznik

“I think anyone who’s not as good a writer as me is absolutely a hack, and I think anybody who’s a slightly better writer than me is brilliant.”

– Chuck Klosterman


I don’t think it’s hyperbole to say that Chuck Klosterman influenced a generation of writers and unconsciously blazed a path for how online critique and analysis would be presented in the first two decades of the 21st Century.

He came to the realization that “people want to think critically about the art that informs their life,” and has created a successful, impactful career as a result. 

Categories
Books Reviews

How I Review Books

Yesterday, I posted my review of Dilla Time Dan Charnas.

Today, I thought I’d explain how I review books.

Categories
Writing

My Best Writing of 2021

This is the post where I lay out the best things I wrote this year. Maybe, in a year like this when my productivity was lower, it might include everything I wrote. We’ll never know (don’t check).

Categories
Books Lessons Life Nostalgia Reading

The Magic of “The Tender Bar”

My personal “Tender Bar” collection — first edition hardcover; audiobook; paperback

“Kid’s a scribbler…”

Film adaptations are tricky. How can you boil down 400 or more pages of story, themes, and character development into a two hour film without losing the impact of what was on the page? 

Anyone that has had their favorite book turned into a movie knows the feeling of being simultaneously excited and anxious, hopeful and terrified, at what the outcome will be.

Now it’s my turn, as the film adaptation of The Tender Bar, the book that completely changed my life, is set to be released in theaters and on Amazon Prime Video. 

Categories
Books Children Fatherhood Parenting Reading

Our Nightly Family Reading Time

“Children reading by lamp light” (Oil on Canvas), by Knud Erik Larsen

A household with two working parents and two children consists of many things but is largely defined by two: routine and chaos.

Categories
Books Lessons Rankings Reviews

Ranking Ryan Holiday’s Books

photo by Christopher Pierznik

Ryan Holiday is my favorite author.

Categories
Books In Appreciation of

In Appreciation Of: Don Winslow’s Cartel Trilogy

“You don’t read these books; you live in them.”

– Janet Maslin, The New York Times

Most novels are not good.

Categories
Art Books Education How I Work Learning Lessons Process Work

Get the Most Out of Your Books – Be an Active Reader (Video)

There’s a YouTube channel called the The Art of Improvement that does those funky illustrated videos to add a visual to written text.

Back in 2019, they asked if they could do the same for my essay “Get the Most Out of Your Books – Be an Active Reader.” I, of course, enthusiastically said yes! It’s a piece of which I’m quite proud, so to have someone not only appreciate it, but build on it in this way is very cool.

Categories
The Pierznik Monthly

The Pierznik Yearly Volume VII [Best of 2020]

My seventh annual best of the year newsletter with the greatest books I enjoyed this year – both fiction and nonfiction.