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The Happy Reader #18

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The Happy Reader issue 18 features Belgian fashion designer Diane Von Furstenberg of “wrap dress” fame alongside novelist Nella Larson's cryptic thriller “Passing”. 

The concept of The Happy Reader is simple: the first half is a long-form interview with a notable book fanatic and the second half explores one classic work of literature from an array of surprising and invigorating angles.

This Issue includes:

The Interview: DIANE VON FURSTENBERG by Seb Emina — ‘I never wanted to be any woman other than myself, but I would like to be Venice’ 

The Book of the Season, Nella Larsen’s novel PASSING, prompts stories on race, code-switching and the whirlwind of Harlem in the 1920s. This novel about race caused a major stir in 1929, only to then be forgotten and for its author to effectively vanish. It’s now recognised as one of the greatest books of the Harlem Renaissance. 

Diction: Adventures in telephony by Willy Ndatira  — Why I no longer use white voice 

Milleu: Racial identity as a jury trial by Morgan Jenkins — The shocking true story that inspired Nella Larsen

Computing: Artificialness by Roisin Kiberd — Algorithms passing as human

Family: Believing my eyes  — Larson’s novel helped me tell my own story

Sail through The Odyssey

The Happy Reader is a collaboration between Penguin Classics and Fantastic Man.