This blog is concerned with providing contextual back stories to great literature as well as acting as a "key" to unlocking mysteries of the text, obscure and not. Insights from scholars are noted. Brilliant readers (and not so) are welcome. George Steiner said that an intellectual is someone who can't read a book without a pencil in his or her hand. Blogs are the new pencils. NYT Mag critic Sam Anderson ("Riff") opines: marginalia is "a way to fully enter the text, to collaborate with it."