Nearly 100 Exceptional Features from 2010

Everything you'll want to read, in one handy spot.
83 stories
From the Web

Dirty Medicine

How medical supply behemoths stick it to the little guy, making America’s health care system more dangerous and expensive.
By Editors Recommend

The Last Days of the Comanches

By the autumn of 1871, the Western frontier was rolling backward, retreating in the face of savage Indian attacks. When a ragtag army of federal soldiers arrived on the Llano Estacado to crush the hostile natives once and for all, they had numbers and firepower on their side. What they didn’t know was that their enemies were led by Quanah Parker, a half-white war chief who may have been the greatest fighter of his time.

May 2010
From the Web

Pandora’s Briefcase

It was a dazzling feat of wartime espionage. But does it argue for or against spying?

May 2010
From the Web

The Hunted

Did American conservationists in Africa go too far?

Apr 2010
From the Web

The High Is Always the Pain and the Pain Is Always the High

Gambling addiction is a simple disease. Living the addiction is a bit more complicated. A chronicle of dependency in seven parts, about poker, Lolita, and how to lose $18,000 in 36 hours.

Oct 2010
From the Web

The Gun

Who lost Vietnam? There were certainly many factors, but an important book forces us to consider this: For the first time in human history, a poorly trained peasant army humbled a great power with the gun its fighters carried. This is the story of that gun, and of the scandalous way that Washington responded to it.

Oct 2010
From the Web

The Case of the Vanishing Blonde

After a woman living in a hotel in Florida was raped, viciously beaten, and left for dead near the Everglades, the police investigation quickly went cold. But a private detective, Ken Brennan, became obsessed with the case: how had the 21-year-old blonde disappeared from her room, unseen by security cameras?

Dec 2010
From the Web

The Killer in the Pool

Last February, when a 12,000-pound orca named Tilikum dragged his SeaWorld trainer into the pool and drowned her, it was the third time the big killer whale had been involved in a death. Many observers wondered why the animal was still working. But some experts, knowing the psychological toll of a life spent in captivity, have posed a darker question: Was it human error, or can a killer whale choose to kill?
Jul 2010
From the Web

The Mark of a Masterpiece

The man who keeps finding famous fingerprints on uncelebrated works of art.

Jul 2010
By Editors Recommend

Art of the Steal

Gerald Blanchard could hack any bank, swipe any jewel. There was no security system he couldn’t beat.

Mar 2010
From the Web

The Ballad of Colton Harris-Moore

In the Northwest’s San Juan Islands, best known for killer whales and Microsoft retirees, a teen fugitive has made a mockery of local authorities, allegedly stealing cars, taking planes for joy­rides, and breaking into vacation homes. His ability to elude the police and survive in the woods has earned him folk-hero status. But some wonder if the 18-year-old will make it out of the hunt alive.

Jan 2010
From the Web

Prison without Walls

Incarceration in America is a failure by almost any measure. But what if the prisons could be turned inside out, with convicts released into society under constant electronic surveillance? Radical though it may seem, early experiments suggest that such a science-fiction scenario might cut crime, reduce costs, and even prove more just.

Sep 2010
From the Web

A Solitary Jailhouse Lawyer Argues His Way Out of Prison

From the Web

The Wrong Man

In the fall of 2001, a nation reeling from the horror of 9/11 was rocked by a series of deadly anthrax attacks. As the pressure to find a culprit mounted, the FBI, abetted by the media, found one. The wrong one.

May 2010
From the Web

The Chemist’s War

The little-told story of how the U.S. government poisoned alcohol during Prohibition with deadly consequences.

Feb 2010
From the Web

Hope. Change. Reality.

Attorney General Eric Holder entered the Justice Department on a mission to reinvent it. He’d rectify the dubious hires of the Bush era; he’d shut down Guantánamo and try the most notorious detainees here on U.S. soil; he’d speak forcefully and often about the return of the rule of law. Unfortunately, Washington doesn’t like an idealist.

GQ
Dec 2010
By Editors Recommend

In the Name of the Law

A colonel cracks down on corruption.

Oct 2010
From the Web

Mississippi’s Corrections Reform

How America’s reddest state—and most notorious prison—became a model of corrections reform.

Aug 2010
From the Web

Smash

The Man Booker Prize winner profiles hardbat ping-pong champ Marty Reisman, who never lost his taste for winning.
Oct 2010
From the Web

Believeland

A proud city forgets “The Player Who Left” and remembers what it used to be.

From the Web

The Chess Master and the Computer

From the Web

What Is I.B.M.’s Watson?

The category is artificial intelligence. This question-answering computer system is ready to challenge some flesh-and-blood “Jeopardy!” champions.

Video Games: The Addiction

The writer was an acclaimed, prize-winning young writer. Then he started playing the video game “Grand Theft Auto.” For three years he has been cocaine addicted, sleep deprived and barely able to write a word. Any regrets? Absolutely none.

Mar 2010
From the Web

The Mystery of the Tainted Cocaine

What’s a drug used to deworm livestock—a drug that can obliterate your immune system—doing in your cocaine? Nobody knows.

Aug 2010
From the Web

You Should Worship Kelly Slater

Why does the world’s greatest surfer get no love?

Dec 2010
From the Web

Postcard from Palestine

Oct 2010
From the Web

In Chile, the Lessons of Isolation

The performance of the miners shows that humans are not wolves, set to descend upon each other.

From the Web

The Little Pill That Could Cure Alcoholism

When an alcoholic doctor began experimenting with Baclofen, he made what could be the medical breakthrough of the century.
May 2010
From the Web

He Who Casts the First Stone

From the Web

Invasion

You think it’d be impossible to share your house with your wife, your daughter, and fifty million or so Argentine ants. And you would be correct.

Jul 2010
By Editors Recommend

Solitude and Leadership

If you want others to follow, learn to be alone with your thoughts.

From the Web

Understanding Corruption

From the Web

Should We Clone Neanderthals?

The scientific, legal, and ethical obstacles.

Mar 2010
From the Web

Holy Terror: The Rise of the Order of the Assassins

From the Web

Night

By Editors Recommend

The Genesis 2.0 Project

A $9 billion cathedral of science, the new Large Hadron Collider exists in a near-magical realm. Exploring its whiz-bang machinery, deep underground, the author probes the collider’s brush with disaster—and the secrets it may soon unlock.

Jan 2010
By Editors Recommend

Inside India’s Rent-A-Womb Business

Gestational dormitories. Routine C-sections. Quintuple embryo implants. Brave New World? Nope, surrogacy tourism.
Mar 2010
From the Web

Letting Go

What should medicine do when it can’t save your life?

Aug 2010
From the Web

Are You Sure You Want to Quit the World?

If you were desperate and hopeless enough to log on to a suicide chat room in recent years, there was a good chance a mysterious woman named Li Dao would find you, befriend you, and gently urge you to take your own life. And, she’d promise, she would join you in that final journey. But then the bodies started adding up, and the promises didn’t. Turned out, Li Dao was something even more sinister than anyone thought.

GQ
Oct 2010
By Editors Recommend

The Distant Executioner

Snipers—once a breed apart due to the brutal intimacy of their kills—may have found the war that needs them the most in Afghanistan. Going inside the world of “Russ Crane,” the author discovers the sharp-shooter’s special talents and torments.

Feb 2010
From the Web

To See for One’s Self

The art of autopsy has a long history and uncertain future.

From the Web

The Frozen Ladder

Nov 2010
From the Web

The British POW That Broke into Auschwitz—And Survived

In 1944, Denis Avey swapped identities with a Jewish prisoner in Auschwitz. Now, at 91, he reveals why he did it.

Feb 2010
By Editors Recommend

Until Cryonics Do Us Part

The men who want to be cryonically preserved, and the women who sometimes find it hard to be married to them.

From the Web

Howard Jacobson on Taking Comic Novels Seriously

As Dickens and even George Eliot knew, humour can be a route to the deepest, darkest places. Howard Jacobson asks why we don’t take comic fiction more seriously.

Oct 2010
From the Web

Seven Years as a Freelance Writer, or, How to Make Vitamin Soup

Aug 2010
From the Web

A Bully Finds a Pulpit on the Web

For DecorMyEyes, bad publicity is a good thing.
From the Web

Hiroshima: This Is Your Life

From the Web

Generation Why?

A review of “The Social Network”—and a meditation on the ways technology shapes and changes how we behave toward one another.

From the Web

The Beck of Revelation

From the Web

TV’s Crowning Moment of Awesome

In thirty-eight years, The Price is Right never had a contestant guess the exact value of prizes in the Showcase showdown. Until Terry Kniess outsmarted everyone—and changed everything.

Jul 2010
From the Web

Long Live the Jart

Long Live Its Long Lines, Thin Fins, Its Lead Head.

Oct 2010
From the Web

Kanye West Has a Goblet

An all-access, totally non-exclusive interview with the would-be king of hip-hop.

Aug 2010
From the Web

Please Allow Me to Correct a Few Things

Imagine if Mick Jagger responded to Keith Richards about his new autobiography.

Nov 2010
From the Web

The Anosognosic’s Dilemma: Something’s Wrong but You’ll Never Know What It Is (Parts 1 through 5)

David Dunning, a Cornell professor of social psychology, was perusing the 1996 World Almanac. In a section called Offbeat News Stories he found a tantalizingly brief account of a series of bank robberies committed in Pittsburgh the previous year. From there, it was an easy matter to track the case to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, specifically to an article by Michael A. Fuoco: Arrest in Bank Robbery, Suspect’s Tv Picture Spurs Tips.

From the Web

Consider the Oyster

There is no greater delicacy than a plate of live, briny bivalves—and no richer source of them than the Gulf Coast. Yet in Galveston Bay, where acres of reefs were obliterated by Hurricane Ike, empty waters are causing oystermen to hang up their nets. Is this the end of our precious mollusk?

Apr 2010
From the Web

Inside the Secret World of Trader Joe’s

Aug 2010
By Editors Recommend

The 36-Hour Dinner Party

One fire, one goat, many cooks. A pyro-gastronomical experiment.

From the Web

Tuna’s End

On the high seas, the bluefin is being hunted into extinction. Will we ever be able to think about seafood the same way?

From the Web

Keeping It Kosher

Hasidim, West Indians, hipsters and pizza. One Brooklyn restaurant thinks it’s the perfect recipe.

From the Web

The Guiltless Pleasure

Nov 2010
From the Web

The James Franco Project

Movie star, conceptual artist, fiction writer, grad student, cipher—he’s turned a Hollywood career into an elaborate piece of performance art. But does it mean anything? A critical investigation, with bathroom break.

Jul 2010
From the Web

Big Breitbart

Andrew Breitbart is messing with you.

Mar 2010
From the Web

Roger Ebert: The Essential Man

It has been nearly four years since Roger Ebert lost his lower jaw and his ability to speak. Now television’s most famous movie critic is rarely seen and never heard, but his words have never stopped.

Mar 2010
From the Web

Frat House for Jesus

The entity behind C Street.

Sep 2010
From the Web

The Jihadist Next Door

In his small-town Alabama high school, Omar Hammami was among the coolest, most gifted students in his class. How did he grow up to become a leader in an African terror group linked to Al Qaeda?

From the Web

The Man the White House Wakes up To

The daily e-mail from Mike Allen, Politico’s star reporter, has become a morning ritual for Washington’s elite.

By Editors Recommend

The Comedian’s Comedian’s Comedian

He’s a boxer, a Buddhist, a hoops junkie, and a kind of Yoda to every funny person born since 1965. The author survives a rare sparring session with Garry Shandling, the reclusive master of American comedy.

GQ
Aug 2010
From the Web

Insane Clown Posse: And God Created Controversy

America’s nastiest rappers in shocking revelation—they’ve been evangelical Christians all along.

Oct 2010
From the Web

The Boy from Yazoo City

Haley Barbour, Mississippi’s first son.

By Editors Recommend

The Lost Girls

For the thousands of women who have been trafficked into Houston and forced to work as prostitutes in the city’s underground sex trade, escaping from captivity may be the easiest part of the nearly impossible road to recovery.

Apr 2010
From the Web

Rachel Uchitel Is Not a Madam

And the bottle girls who work at clubs are not prostitutes. As Tiger Woods’s very public escapades through the 21st-century courtesan economy suggest, it’s all much more complicated than that.

Apr 2010
From the Web

The Closing of the Marijuana Frontier

California is not just deciding whether pot should be legal. It’s determining the shape of a major new American industry.

From the Web

My Summer on the Content Farm

Nov 2010
From the Web

All Those Numbers: Logistics, Territory and Walmart

May 2010
From the Web

Beware of Greeks Bearing Bonds

As Wall Street hangs on the question “Will Greece default?,” the author heads for riot-stricken Athens, and for the mysterious Vatopaidi monastery, which brought down the last government, laying bare the country’s economic insanity. But beyond a $1.2 trillion debt (roughly a quarter-million dollars for each working adult), there is a more frightening deficit. After systematically looting their own treasury, in a breathtaking binge of tax evasion, bribery, and creative accounting spurred on by Goldman Sachs, Greeks are sure of one thing: they can’t trust their fellow Greeks.
Oct 2010
From the Web

“God Help You. You’re on Dialysis.”

Every year, more than 100,000 Americans start dialysis. One in four of them will die within 12 months—a fatality rate that is one of the worst in the industrialized world. Oh, and dialysis arguably costs more here than anywhere else. Although taxpayers cover most of the bill, the government has kept confidential clinic data that could help patients make better decisions. How did our first foray into near-universal coverage, begun four decades ago with such great hope, turn out this way? And what lessons does it hold for the future of health-care reform?

Dec 2010
From the Web

The Pirates Are Winning!

By Editors Recommend

Sweatpants in Paradise

The exciting world of immersive retail.

Sep 2010
From the Web

Gentrification and Its Discontents

Manhattan Never Was What We Think It Was.

Jun 2010
From the Web

Predatory Habits

How Wall Street Transformed Work in America.

Dec 2010
From the Web

Start-Up City

Entrepreneurs are the heroes of New York’s past and the key to its future.
Sep 2010
From the Web

Tokyo Hooters Girls

The burgers, beer, and boobs chain opens in Japan.
Dec 2010