What We Are Reading Today: Breaking and Entering

Updated 19 January 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Breaking and Entering

Author: Jeremy N. Smith

In Breaking and Entering: The Extraordinary Story of a Hacker Called Alien, Jeremy N. Smith tells a tale of computer intrigue, but not through the eyes of the black hats whose misdeeds have dominated recent political news.
Instead, Smith wants readers to meet the people behind the help desk — the tech gurus and security consultants standing between us and digital carnage.
This true thriller dives into a dark world that touches us all, as seen through the brilliant, breakneck career of an extraordinary hacker — a woman known only as Alien.
Reviewing the book for New York Times, Matt Apuzzo said: “If there’s one lesson to be learned from Alien’s story, it is this: As Russian hackers challenge democracies and criminal attacks turn our personaldata into commodities, we cannot turn to technology to save us. Security is only as strong as the employee who tapes his passwords to his cubicle, the overworked guard at the front desk and, yes, the person on the other end of the line when you call the help desk.”


What We Are Reading Today: Before Our Eyes by Eleanor Wilner

Updated 21 August 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Before Our Eyes by Eleanor Wilner

  • Before Our Eyes features widely anthologized works such as “Sarah’s Choice” and “Reading the Bible Backwards”

Before Our Eyes gathers more than 30 new poems by Eleanor Wilner, along with representative selections from her seven previous books, to present a major overview of her distinguished body of work. 

A poet who engages with history in lyrical language, Wilner creates worlds that reflect on and illuminate the actual one, drawing on the power of communal myth and memory to transform them into agents of change, says a review on the Princeton University Press website.

In these poems, well-known figures step out of old texts to alter their stories and new figures arise out of the local air — a girl with a fury of bees in her hair, homesick statues that step down from their pedestals, a bat cave whose altar bears a judgment on our worship of war, and a frog whose spring wakening invites our own. In the process, ancient myths are naturalized while nature is newly mythologized in the service of life.

Before Our Eyes features widely anthologized works such as “Sarah’s Choice” and “Reading the Bible Backwards.”