Michael Greenberg

For several months I have read, in a fugitive manner, Michael Greenberg’s essay collection Beg, Borrow, Steal: A Writer’s Life. A compilation of roughly thousand-word essays he has published in the Times Literary Supplement, the book, so far as I can tell, amounts to a haphazard index of New York, a careful and sympathetic accounting of its odd places and characters. I peruse it standing up. I read in a West Village bookstore about a longtime fixer in the Brooklyn neighborhood where Greenberg grew up, and in an Upper West Side indie about Hart Island, a potter’s field where thousands of New York’s anonymous dead lie buried. Now I’m pleased to discover that Greenberg has inaugurated a new column, “The Accidentalist,” in the new issue of Bookforum. Read his first entry, about a “strange fever,” here.