Book Details

An eclectic volume introduced by David Sedaris and compiled by Dave Eggers and students of his San Francisco writing center, who don't leave a stone unturned in their search for nonrequired gems.

Introduction by David Sedaris

Best American Woman Comedy Piece by A Woman from The Rumpus, Wendy Molyneux
Best American Sentences on Page 50 from Books Published in 2009
Best American Magazine Letters Section from Newsweek, Stephen Colbert
Best American Fast-food-related Crimes
Best American Gun Magazine Headlines
Best American Six-word Memoirs About Love and Heartbreak
Best American New Patents from United States Patent and Trademark Office
Best American Tweets from
Best American Letter to the Editor from Bidoun
Best American Overqualified Cover Letters by Joey Comeau from Overqualified
Best American Fictional Character Names
Best American 350-word Story by Barry Lopez from Orion
Best American Farm Names
Best American First Lines of Poems Published in 2009
Best American Journal Article Titles
Best American Illustrated Missed Connections from
Best American New Band Names
Best American Lawsuits
Best American Poems Written in the Last Decade by Soldiers and Citizens in Iraq and Afghanistan
War Dances by Sherman Alexie from War Dances
Like I Was Jesus by Rachel Aviv from Harper's Magazine
Burying Jeremy Green by Nora Bonner from Shenandoah
The Carnival by Lilli Carré from Mome
Capital Gains by Rana Dasgupta from Granta
the Encirclement by Tamas Dobozy from Granta
Man of Steel by Bryan Furuness from Ninth Letter
Half Beat by Elizabeth Gonzalez from The Greensboro Review
Gentlemen, Start Your Engines by Andrew Sean Greer from San Francisco Panorama
the photographer by Emmanuel Guibert, Didier Lefèvre, and Frédéric Lemercier from the photographer
what, of this goldfish, would you wish? by etgar keret from Tin House, translated from Hebrew by Nathan Englander
Help Is On The Way by Courtney Moreno from La Weekly
the Tiger's Wife by Téa Obreht from The New Yorker
Breakdown by T. Ott from Mome
Ideas by Patricio Pron from The Paris Review, translated from Spanish by Mara Faye Lethem
Vanish by Evan Ratliff from Wired
Seven Months, Ten Days In Captivity by David Rohde from New York Times
Tent City, U.S.A. by George Saunders from GQ
the Nice Little People by Kurt Vonnegut from Zoetrope: Al-Story
Freedom by Amy Waldman from Boston Review

Other distinguished submissions on this topic, selected by the series editor.

Adam Mansbach The Audacity of Post-Racism, from The Speech.
Adin Bookbinder Meteorology, from One Story.
Aimee Bender Americca, from Tin House.
Aimee Levitt Death Watch, from Riverfront Times.
Akhim Yuseff Cabey Boy Squared, from The Sun.
Aleksandar Hemon Genocide's Epic Hero, from The New York Times.
Amy Bloom Compassion and Mercy, from Granta.
Ander Monson Ander Alert, from The Normal School.
Anne Elizabeth Moore Reimagining the National Border Patrol Museum, from Annalemma.
Anne Gisleson Our Hearts of Glass, from Oxford American.
Anne Elizabeth Moore Reimagining the National Border Patrol Museum, from Annalemma.
Anthony Doerr The River Nemunas, from Tin House.
Anthony Varallo After the Finale, from Alaska Quarterly Review.
Archer Prewitt Funny Bunny, from Mome.
Arthur Phillips Dancing About Architecture, from The Believer.
Atul Gawande The Cost Conundrum, from The New Yorker.
Bernardo Atxaga The Mystery of the Four Birds, from Threepenny Review.
Brian Mockenhaupt We've Seen the Future, and It's Unmanned, from Esquire.
Bucky McMahon Relocation! Relocation! Relocation!, from GQ.
Caron A. Levis Permission Slip, from Fence.
Christian Bauman Our Father, from Identity Theory.
Christina Yu Sphere, from New Letters.
Christopher Cook Banned in Britain, from Columbia Journalism Review.
Dan Moreau The King of Jews, from Annalemma.
Dan Weikel He's His Own Port Authority, from The Los Angeles Times.
Danica Novgorodoff, James Ponsoldt, and Benjamin Percy Refresh, Refresh (comic book),
David Foster Wallace The Planet Trillaphon as It Stands in Relation to the Bad Thing, from Tin House.
Desmond Tutu "Remarks by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill" (commencement speech),
Dimiter Kenarov The Mask of Sanity, from Virginia Quarterly Review.
Ed Park Untitled, from Gigantic.
Ed Taylor Grendel, from Southwest Review.
Elizabeth McCracken The Lost and Found Department of Greater Boston, from Zeotrope: All-Story.
Emily Quinlan Bloody Shadow, from Green Mountains Review.
Eric Gabriel Lehman Crazy Friend, from
Eva Marer Pleasure, from Open City.
Evan Rehill Landon Sheinblatt, from American Short Fiction.
Gabrielle Bell Helpless, from Cecil and Jordan in New York
Gary Fincke Smart Boy, from Crazyhorse.
Gary Shteyngart Montana's Luxury Winter Lodge, from Travel & Leisure.
Gene Yang Gran'pa Greenbax, from The Eternal Smile.
George Saunders Al Roosten, from The New Yorker.
Gina Triplett Spin the Bottle, from Mother Jones.
Irakli Iosebashvili Chronicles of a Soviet Capitalist, from Guernica.
Ingrid Satelmajer How to Be a Disciple, from Cutbank.
J. Malcolm Garcia Call of the Narcocorrido, from Virginia Quarterly Review.
James Hannaham Interrupted Serenade, from One Story.
Jefferson Hansen Venezuela, from Africa, Big Bridge.
Jen McClanaghan The Dead, from Iowa Review.
Jennifer Egan Safari, from The New Yorker.
John Garcia My Name, from River Oak Review
John Janovy Jr. The Ginkgo, from Isotope.
Jon Mooallem Raider of the Lost R2, from Harper's Magazine
Justin Heckert Lost in the Waves, from Men's Journal.
Justin Taylor In My Heart I Am Already Gone, from Canteen.
Kachi Ozumba A Chief Doctor too Old for Cocktails at Noon, from The Drawbridge.
Kari Volkmann-Carlsen The Emancipated Earth, from Utne Reader.
Laura Park Office 32F, from Mome.
Leslie Jamison Parasitology, from Salt Hill.
Lili Wright The Country I Came From, from Wag's Revue.
Lindy West The Different Kinds of People that There Are, from The Stranger
Lori Ostlund Bed Death, from Kenyon Review.
Lysley Tenorio Feliz Starro, from Zeotrope: All-Story
Lucy Ferriss Writing the Body, from The Southern Review.
Luke Dittrich Four Days on the Border, from Virginia Quarterly Review.
Maira Kalman May It Please the Court, from The New York Times.
Matthew Cooper Henderson, from Hayden's Ferry Review.
Maziar Bahari 118 Days, 12 Hours, 54 Minutes, from Newsweek.
Michelle Tea The Gossip Takes Paris, from The Believer.
Mukoma Wa Ngugi Abiku: Return from Exile, from Kenyon Review.
Nathan Thrall Truth or Dare, from GQ.
Negar Azimi Arabic as a Second Language, from TBidoun.
Neil Swidey Trapped, from The Boston Globe.
Nicholson Baker A New Page, from The New Yorker.
Nina McConigley Curating Your Life, from American Short Fiction.
Noah Eli Gordon Excerpt from Dysgraphia, from Fence.
Paul La Farge A Scanner Darkly, from The Believer.
Paul Rawlins Dreamsicle, from Epoch.
Paul Reyes Opportunity Knocks, from Virginia Quarterly Review.
Ramona Ausubel Saver, from Pax Americana
Randa Jarrar Accidental Transients, from Five Chapters.
Ricardo Nuila Status Post, from Indiana Review.
Richard Powers Enquire Within Upon Everything, from The Paris Review .
Rivka Galchen Disaster Aversion, from Harper's Magazine.
Rolf Potts Where No Travel Writer Has Gone Before, from World Hum .
Ryan Boudinot I Used to Be a Plastic Bottle!, from We Are the Friction.
Salar Abdoh Sad Bully with a Big Badge, from The Drawbridge.
Sara Gran and Megan Abbott Dark Family, from The Believer.
Saša Staniši The Pursuit of Vikings, from The Drawbridge.
Scott Raab The Last Nazi, from Esquire.
Seth George Sprott (comic book)
Shann Ray How We Fall, from Montana Quarterly.
Sheila Schwartz Finding Peace, from One Story.
Skip Hollandsworth Still Life, from Texas Monthly.
Stefan de la Garza How High Deer Jump Son, from Columbia Journal.
Stephanie Dickinson The Village of Butterflies, from Green Mountains Review.
Stephen Elliot Where the Bus Was Going, from Make.
Stephen King Morality, from Esquire.
Steve Macone Press 9 to Save, from The Christian Science Monitor.
Susumu Katsumata Mulberries, from Red Snow.
T. Coraghessan Boyle All the Wrecks I've Crawled Out of, from Narrative Magazine.
Theo Ellsworth Sleeper Car (comic book)
Thomas Burke The Long-Form Burrito Competition of The World, from Tin House.
Tim Johnson Dirt Men, from New Letters.
Travis Klunick Yeguas y Caballos, from Greensboro Review.
Tricia Springstubb In the Dark, from Iowa Review.
Valerie Vogrin Things We'll Need for the Coming Difficulties, from Agni.
Vestal McIntyre Late in Life, from Open City.
Wendell Berry Andy Catlett: Early Education, from The Threepenny Review.
William Hillyard Wonder Valley, from Denver Voice.
William T. Vollmann Body Snatchers, from Granta.