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Everything Our Editors Loved in March


In March, Outside staffers turned up the volume on audiobooks, listening to authors speak first-hand about broken hearts and human connections. Other literary endeavors included a book about a Montana reservation’s high school basketball team and the television adaptation of Bridgerton. Here are all our favorites of the month.

What we read

The book that I am offering and recommending to everyone at the moment is brothers out of threeby Outside editor Abe Streep. The story follows the arc of the Arlee Warriors, a Class C basketball team in Montana made up of boys from the Flathead Indian Reservation. While the teenagers’ hoop dreams are what drive the narrative forward, the questions that arise in the natural course of their greatest endeavors are what stuck with me, including what it means to succeed in our society for those who are marginalized. . Streep’s incredible reporting, which spanned years, and the relationships he was careful to cultivate and respect are evident and have offered an accurate insight into how far this community has worked to show their boys that they are cherished, even as their classmates have died by suicide and college programs have been rejected. for non-natives. —Tasha Zemke, associate editor

This month I read and reread a collection of poems by Marie Howe called what the living do. I got it second-hand, on a whim, and opened it with a poem that stuck in my brain. It’s called “The Door” and it opens: “I had no idea that the door I was going to cross / to finally enter this world / would be the space created by my brother’s body.” The collection of poems is about big things – family, intimacy, love, loss – but Howe unfolds huge feelings with sweet, simple imagery and language, writing about a cheese and mustard sandwich, a sweatshirt, magnolia branches in a jar. It’s a book I already return to regularly and I think it will be part of my life for quite some time. —Abigail Barronian, Editor-in-Chief

What we listened to

Country singer Hailey Whitters Raised begins with an orchestral piece titled “Ad Astra per Alas Porci”, Latin for “to the stars on a pig’s wings” – a fitting opening for an album about growing up in Iowa, where the pigs seven times more people than people. As a fellow Iowan (despite growing up in an urban area), I felt a thrill of gratitude listening to Whitters sing about “water tower horizons,” “dream fields,” and go “to church in our blue”. jeans.” It’s rare to hear stories about the Midwest in mainstream country music. As Whitters said recently Vulture, when she moved to Nashville, Tennessee, from her hometown of Shueyville, she often reassured southerners that she was “a different kind of country” but still just as country as they were. Influenced by heart rock and 90s country hits a la John Mellencamp and the Chicks, Raised feels fresh and familiar all at once. —Isabella Rosario, Associate Editor

Outside contributor to new book by Florence Williams Heartbreak was the Outside The Book Club’s March pick, but what I didn’t learn until our Q&A with Williams was that she had produced a special audiobook, published at the same time as the paper version. Over the reports Heartbreak– which involves dealing with a divorce after 25 years of marriage and investigating the science behind a broken heart – Williams has recorded hours of his interviews with various researchers and experts, conversations with friends, audio diaries of grief and the confusion she felt in the months after the split, and even sessions with her therapist. Then she teamed up with Malcom Gladwell’s podcast outfit Pushkin Industries to incorporate all of this into the audiobook. The result is something totally elevated and different from the experience of reading the book: hearing her friends support her in her lowest moments is poignant in a way that the written version couldn’t reach without hearing the emotion. in their voices. And Williams even persuaded a man she had started a fling with, who had some very interesting sexual preferences, to speak candidly on tape about the relationship, transforming this part of the book. I went through it chapter by chapter for a week. —Luke Whelan, Editor

Pray for my broken heart: I recently concluded Ringer’s great podcast series 60 songs that explain the 90s, and I now find myself without my weekly dose of Boys II Men and Billy Ray Cyrus. Like other music podcasts, 60 songs explores his favorite genre (the pop hits of the 90s) through the double prism of rock criticism and musicology. Each episode tackles a different song, and host Rob Harvilla provides stories for each band and sage explanations of why a particular record flew off the shelves of your local Sam Goody. But 60 songs stands at the top of this crowded podcast genre due to Harvilla’s humor and lived experiences that will connect to any Gen Xer or older millennial. He weaves his own pathetic geek stories into each episode, creating highly relatable moments for those of us who have played in ska bands and recorded radio mix tapes. He reminds us of long-forgotten musical subcultures, like Cake fans or jangly guitarists. And it brings added cultural weight to songs and artists that, at the time, felt like pure cheese. For example, in order to understand Celine Dion’s multi-platinum success, Harvilla tells us to study the sexual tension in Meat Loaf’s epic 1977 duet “Paradise by the Dashboard Light.” I could write paragraphs about my love for this podcast. It reinvigorated my affection for the songs and artists I listened to as a teenager and helped exorcise some musical demons that many of us still cling to in those days. I’m no longer ashamed to sing with Dave Matthews on “Crash into Me” (OK, I can skip the scarier lyrics) or rap with Coolio on “Gangsta’s Paradise.” I have Harvilla and 60 songs that explain the 90s thank. —Fred Dreier, Articles Editor

In March, I blew into a audio book of John Green’s release in 2021 The anthropocene revisited. The book’s series of essays each provide an in-depth examination of various aspects of human life in the age of the Anthropocene and end, absurdly, with a rating of one to five stars. For example, Canada geese receive two stars out of five, while sunsets receive five stars. Dr Pepper diet: four stars. I chuckled at a chapter on mortification that dryly described Green’s most embarrassing moments, sobbed to the sound of Hawaii’s last surviving Kauai Oo bird singing what should have been a duet with its missing mate a long time ago, and I found myself surprisingly nostalgic for the common winter weather mix in my home state of Wisconsin. I’m sure the print version of the book is an engaging read, but it was wonderfully intimate to hear Green tell the stories himself; they provide excerpts from memoirs that touch on mental health, COVID fears, loss, and relationships. I was surprised to find (and feel) so much love and wonder for the world in these seemingly random essays. Of course, I had to give the book five stars. —Molly Hanson, associate editor

What we watched

I didn’t really know what to expect when I started watching Breakup on Apple TV. The show’s premise is intentionally vague: it tells the story of a group of office workers (led by Adam Scott and Christopher Walken) who voluntarily undergo a procedure to completely disconnect their jobs from their “regular” selves. All memories, knowledge of their personal lives, and awareness of current events are erased during the hours they refine the data of their employer, Lumon, a mysterious company that gives off enough cult vibes to cast a shadow of bewilderment. on the series. Over the course of nine episodes, the layers slowly peel away, revealing a dystopian reality that is both terrifying and intriguing. It’s both challenging and bingeable and gives new meaning to the term work-life balance. —Kelsey Lindsey, Editor-in-Chief

After devouring the first season of the romance novel that became a Netflix sensation Bridgerton, I eagerly awaited the next love story in the series. The second chapter didn’t disappoint, laying out a foe-to-love storyline between Bridgerton’s older brother Anthony (played by Jonathan Bailey) and newcomer Kate Sharma (give actress Simone Ashley all the awards in this moment). While I was invested in the drama that accompanies courtship rituals, I was also captivated by the show’s aesthetic: ornate balls, over-the-top dresses, and classic covers of pop songs like Madonna’s “Material Girl.” . The show has already been renewed for a third and fourth season, with many breadcrumbs hinting at future storylines. I’ll be tuning in again, cup of tea in hand, to find out what happens to high society’s version of Gossip Girl, the illusory Lady Whistledown. —Daniella Byck, Associate Editor