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What Makes People Gay?

By Notable Narratives February 13, 2007

A model of clear explication of complex ideas, this piece shows how a sense of arc and suspense can be achieved in the form of amiable-narrator-in-pursuit-of-ideas. Swidey begins the piece with a scene in which identical twins show marked differences. Read more

After the Fall

By Notable Narratives January 18, 2007

According to this series, 29 percent of elderly people who break a hip die within a year. This is higher than the one-year rate of death following a stroke. The series is very effective in highlighting this surprising problem in … Read more

The Lessons of the Father

By Notable Narratives October 25, 2006

We asked Swidey to tell us about his work on this story. Here’s what he e-mailed us: “I knew what I didn’t want to write: the birth-to-current-day profile of Mitt Romney, the Massachusetts governor and presidential hopeful. That had been … Read more

Reliving the Morning of Death

By Notable Narratives September 17, 2006

This narrative succeeds because of the clarity with which it sequences events and because of its evocative detail. Its wrenching emotional content springs from such detail: the mother’s instructions for caring for her children, the pilot’s farm, the cell phone … Read more

Facing Famine

By Notable Narratives July 20, 2006

This essay appeared in Best American Travel Writing 2004. In much of his writing, Haines is a cross-cultural guide, seeking to take his readers into foreign worlds, to help them experience another culture’s deep difference—and also its humanity. In this … Read more

Dear World

By Notable Narratives May 9, 2006

Viser writes about a young man, Zack Weinstein, who has “started an unusual process: healing by blog.” Weinstein writes about his experiences on his blog following a spinal injury that paralyzed him from the chest down. Viser alternates excerpts from … Read more

Rakan’s War

By Notable Narratives May 5, 2006

Rakan is a 12-year-old who, through extraordinary intervention by several powerful men, is flown to an American hospital from Iraq following the death of his parents and his own injury from American fire. It’s a compelling tale. We liked the … Read more

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

Choosing Naia

By Notable Narratives March 15, 2005

This six-part narrative is now a classic, instructive for its solid structure, rounded characters and close reporting. Notice the ways that Zuckoff weaves medical background and the details of Naia’s case into the narrative. He also reports finely, choosing pertinent … Read more