He was born with a gift of laughter, and a sense that the world was mad.
—Rafael Sabatini, from Scaramouche


Poets think in lines, prose writers in sentences; the best of both work from sound to sense, with an ear for the music in their compositions. S for Sentence celebrates lyricism in prose, the play and craft at work in the artful sentence. We post a sentence a month along with comments by a guest writer on the craft that shapes it, on what makes it great. In one or two sentences.
—Pearl Abraham, Editor
—Stephanie Grant, Guest Editor
The first eight words have me imagining a blessing from a godmother, or a benevolent angel. Then hard on the heels of these first eight come the next eight: “and a sense that the world was mad.” It requires a bit of living, a bit of worldly experience, to achieve that kind of sophistication. Feel the marvelous rhythm, the two halves are inseparable. This sounds like a man who doesn’t hold a grudge, who might just shake his head at whatever vicissitudes life visits on him. I am completely in love, and expecting some serious adventure in the next 318 pages.
—Abigail Thomas is the author of, most recently, Safekeeping, A Three Dog Life, and What Comes Next and How to Like It