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Sitdown Sunday: 7 deadly reads

The very best of the week’s writing from around the web.

IT’S A DAY of rest, and you may be in the mood for a quiet corner and a comfy chair.

We’ve hand-picked the week’s best reads for you to savour.

1. Anatomy of a murder

italy murder The town of Brembate di Sopra Source: Google Maps

A young teen girl went missing in a small Italian town. The race to find who killed her led to the uncovering of long-hidden family secrets.

(The Guardian, approx 30 mins reading time, 6062 words)

Yara’s gym instructor confirmed that she had seen the teenager earlier that day and that she had done some light training before heading off. The police quickly established that the last known contact with Yara was a text message she had sent to a friend, Martina, at 6.44pm, agreeing to meet at 8am the following Sunday. That was the last anyone heard from her.

2. Allergic to wi-fi

green bank Source: Google Maps

There is a ban on wi-fi and mobile phones in Green Bank in West Virginia in the US, because of a high-tech government telescope. This means it has begun to draw in people sensitive to technology… but the residents aren’t delighted about that.

(The Washingtonian, approx 21 mins reading time, 4205 words)

The transition wasn’t easy. “Coming to Green Bank was a culture shock,” she says. “If you want to have Starbucks and shopping malls, you won’t survive here.” But the Schous didn’t feel they had a lot of choice, given how much better they felt inside the Quiet Zone. The couple found an unfinished home and sold half of their Iowa farm to buy, finish, and rewire it.

3. Healthy body, unhealthy mind

PA-21698255 Source: JONATHAN HAYWARD

Pico Iyer ate absolute crap, until he changed his diet… but he hadn’t reckoned on the need to have a healthy mind, too. And that changed everything.

(New York Times, approx 7 mins reading time, 1432 words)

But at some point — maybe around the middle of my fifth decade — my Happy Meals began to leave me feeling a little less than exuberant. They sat inside my stomach, wobbling, even as I somehow felt more empty than before I had devoured them. Finally, flush with pride, I put most burgers and fries behind me.

4. Serial’s prosecutor

serial  pic2

You might have been waiting for this… an exclusive interview with Kevin Urick, the chief prosecutor in Adnan Syed’s murder case.

(The Intercept, approx 22 mins reading time, 4563 words)

Urick didn’t have new facts to tell us—just as “Serial” didn’t uncover any new evidence. But his concise recounting of the main points in the case, without the podcast’s diversions and distractions, explains why the jury convicted Adnan after such brief deliberations.

5. Sex therapy

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esther perel Source: TED talk via YouTube

Esther Perel is a sex therapist whose work is much in demand – because she looks at the key to rediscovering desire in long-term relationships.

(New York Times, approx 12 mins reading time, 2446 words)

Her 2013 TED talk, the “Secret to Desire in a Long Term Relationship,” had one million hits in the first two weeks it was posted, taking on an apparent epidemic of low-libido marriages in what is theoretically the least repressed era in modern history. (That may be part of the problem: “How can you desire what you already have?” Ms. Perel often asks in her talks.)

6. I’m allergic to everything

Source: Narratively/Vimeo

In this video, Crystal Goodwin talks about having the rare disease mast cell activation syndrome, which has effectively changed her life forever.

(Narratively, approx 6 mins)


Ukraine Chernobyl A gigantic steel arch under construction to cover the remnants of the exploded reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant Source: AP/Press Association Images

In 1986, the Chernobyl Nuclear Power was rocked by a series of explosions. Here are the experiences of those who lived through the disaster.

(Paris Review, approx 46 mins reading time, 9212 words)

I said to my husband, “Vasenka, what should I do?” “Get out of here! Go! You have our child.” I was pregnant. But how could I leave him? He was saying to me: “Go! Leave! Save the baby.” “First I need to bring you some milk, then we’ll decide what to do.”

More: The best reads from every previous Sitdown Sunday >

The Sports Pages – the best sports writing collected every week by TheScore.ie>

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