Leah Rachel von Essen

Leah Rachel von Essen is a writer and editor who gets most of her reading done while walking. She works full-time as a magazine assistant editor, while also reviewing for Booklist, writing for Book Riot and other publications, writing her blog, and working on writing and querying her novels. She uses her spare time to watch women's soccer, travel, and sometimes even sleep. Originally from New Jersey, she came to the South Side of Chicago to study magical realism, surrealism, fairy tales, religious studies, and the forms of the novel at the University of Chicago. She, her cat Ms. Nellie Bly, and her two large bookshelves live reading-and-walking distance from Lake Michigan. Leah writes about the books she's reading at While Reading and Walking. Twitter: @reading_while

How Getting Lost Taught Me a Better Way to Read

I like to read each book straight through. But when reading A Field Guide to Getting Lost by Rebecca Solnit, that just wasn't an option.

The Neglected Tale of the Tougaloo Nine and their 1961 Read-In

In 1960s Mississippi, nine Black students put their lives on the line to fight for equal access to public libraries.

10 Books in Translation from Modern Greek

Modern-day Greece is haunted by much different ghosts than those of Achilles or Odysseus, and these books reflect its current struggles.

New and Recent Gothic Horror

The punch doesn't taste right, you can't find the friend you came with, and you aren't sure how you're getting home: it's gothic horror.

12 Awesome Books Translated from Arabic

These 12 books in translation from Arabic will make you think, hurt your heart, and encourage you to read more translated literature.

Investigating My Teenage Obsession with the Fruits Basket Manga

When I was in middle school, Fruits Basket had a grip on me that still affects me to this day. I reread the series to figure out why.

15 Compelling Chilean Books in Translation

Discover more about the land of poets by picking up some of these unforgettable Chilean books available translated into English, including My Tender Matador.

Standalone Fantasy Books for Newbies to the Genre

Curious about the fantasy genre but are overwhelmed by series? These standalone fantasy books are great for beginners.

12 Stunning German Language Books Available in Translation

Check out a dozen superb German novels about dispossession, dislocation, loss, and love, including several exciting new releases.

20 Must-Read Queer Nonfiction Books from Around The World

These must-read books from around the world tell true stories in the voices of queer writers, from Kenya, India, Jamaica, Cuba, and more.