Notable Narratives

Reflections on classic stories that endure through time, or on new narratives that expand the possibilities of story work.

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Critical Care

By Notable Narratives May 2, 2006

We liked this vivid and engaging study in character. Allen follows the struggles of a novice nurse as she begins training in the most grueling of nursing domains, the ICU at Mass General Hospital. Her teacher is a strong-willed, skilled … Read more

Against All Odds

By Notable Narratives May 1, 2006

If there were a genre called moral narrative, this piece (and the book on which it is based) would exemplify it. The driving threads in the story are nothing less than forces of good and evil: anti- and pro-slavery factions … Read more

Shooting an Elephant

By Notable Narratives April 27, 2006

This is a powerful, honest piece in which Orwell brilliantly gets at the complex human experience of living and ruling in a strange land. It’s a deeply compelling read that is also deeply political. It is also disturbingly graphic—not in … Read more

War Without End

By Notable Narratives April 17, 2006

This series about two men who lost their legs to IEDs in Iraq is built on a wealth of close detail. The piece chronicles their struggles to recover from their injuries, both physically and psychologically. We appreciated the probing interest … Read more

The Fever

By Notable Narratives April 14, 2006

There are two main characters in this series: first, the illness itself, which ravaged Norfolk and Plymouth, Va., in 1855. It killed one out of three people in the communities it reached. Its effects form a summary narrative of the … Read more

An Imam in America

By Notable Narratives April 14, 2006

We like this series for its scrupulous attention to detail. Its descriptive passages pop with verbs; we are right there, walking with the imam as he starts his morning. Elliott balances narrative action and context, reminding the reader what the … Read more

Learning to Hit a Lick

By Notable Narratives April 14, 2006

Several things make this two-part narrative notable. The first and most visually obvious is the method of attribution. The footnotes illustrate Shalhoup’s vigorous reporting; they point to her ability to take mountains of details and write a clear-headed story. We … Read more