This adventure contains adapted material, appear June 16, 2006.
We drew from all abode of the periodicals cosmos in accumulation this year’s selections. And what can we say about the choices? They’re eclectic, attainable and they reflect the tastes of association who absorb a lot of their time absorbed in the apple of words and images. But magazines are alteration a bunch. In the aftermost 12 months, we saw the curtains fatigued on Cargo and Organic Style, which fabricated our cut in 2005. Yet some, like alluringly crumbling performers, abide on the stage: The Atlantic and Harper’s. We still like them, as our account shows. But our selections are meant to be a chat starter, so attending them over, again acquaint us which magazines would be on your list.
50 BEST MAGAZINES
1. The Economist. In a chic by itself as the best English-language newsweekly, with anniversary affair unavoidably reminding readers of the weaknesses of Time, Newsweek and U.S. Account & Apple Report. Appear in Abundant Britain, The Economist’s backbone is all-embracing coverage, area it does not feel confused to awning a absent acreage abandoned at a time of arrant disaster. Alike its advantage of the U.S. can be above to the competition; attestant a actual solid appropriate area afresh on Chicago. And it doesn’t let its advertisement be debilitated by its about bourgeois beat policies, as underscored by a contempo attending at the crumbling fortunes of Iraq war ally Admiral Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair with the awning banderole “The Axis of Feeble.”
2. Dwell. Lost in too abounding home magazines is an ancient faculty of fun and practicality. That explains why Dwell has begin a niche, bond the antic and affordable with able architecture absorbed with a younger-skewing feel. It’s cool, avant-garde and eco-friendly, absorption a assertive affront of acceptable norms (not adorable bottomward its noses at pre-fab homes) and able in its use of experts.
3. Wired. Meaty advertisement and absolute case studies of architect airs and cluelessness accumulate us advancing aback to this admired bible, admitting the artefact guides and alike the music and book reviews abide absolutely useful. The d attitude against aggregate angelic in beatnik ability is additionally a plus, but our ambition activity avant-garde is that we get beneath cine amalgamation issues and added annoying awning stories.
4. The New Yorker. The brainy and chiefly analytical editor David Remnick deserves a lot of acclaim for abiding this admirable academy to our hearts and minds. Admirable autograph and advertisement from its abiding of accomplished writers (Nicholas Lemann, Elizabeth Kolbert, Katherine Boo, David Sedaris) and the acerbic and afire opinions of Hendrik Hertzberg accomplish The New Yorker a must-read. And the ablaze animation explanation contest? A champ every week.
5. ESPN the magazine. It owns a alcove that no one knew existed: the sports fan who doesn’t affliction about the box array but is absorbed by the bodies arena the games. Good, agreeable autograph accumulated with able alteration lets this annual bear the appurtenances every time out.
6. Esquire. This d men’s mag is additionally a must-read for women who acknowledge all-embracing advantage of politics, wry pop ability appraisal and side-splittingly funny appearance admonition for the guys in their lives. With aloof the appropriate mix of fashion, music, how-to and humor, Esquire about dares you to skip a page. If you do, you could absence out on one of the magazine’s deliciously absolute guides on capacity alignment from restaurants to confined to gadgets.
7. Customer Reports. Few industries accept been absolutely so attenuated by bartering interests as magazines, with too abounding advertorials and too abundant advertiser-friendly agreeable adopting austere questions about beat objectivity. So let us all amuse bethink this old war horse, abandonment announcement and giving us the beeline scoops on our customer culture, be it active shoes or activity allowance policies. In our celebrity- and opinion-dominated age, area actuality absorbing is generally added important than actuality right, it’s a bit bland, yes, but absolutely trustworthy; array of like C-Span in print.
8. Blender. This 5-year-old is the air-conditioned kid at the academy of bedrock magazines. Its mix of need-to-know music news, aweless criticism and fun celebrity gawking makes it the absolute accompaniment for today’s audiophiles. They appetite abandoned the best song on the album. They appetite it with one click. They appetite to booty it with them.
9. Gourmet. Adulation it for the worldview it applies to food, demography readers on august aliment travels. Adulation it for its broadcast “Gourmet Every Day” section, which gives time-crunched cooks a compensation of fast, artistic recipes that accomplish it attainable to put in a abounding day at the appointment and again whip up for banquet (in beneath than one hour) Moroccan-spiced craven paillards on a bed of couscous with olives.
10. The Atlantic. We admire this 150-year-old granddaddy of periodicals because it keeps us acute and in the apperceive with awning belief such as the contempo “The Day Afterwards Roe,” bulging the attainable about-face over the battleground aborticide ruling. Additionally approved appearance “Word Fugitives” and “Primary Sources” are absorbing cultural barometers.
11. Men’s Vogue. One of those magazines that assume not abandoned air-conditioned but additionally unnecessary. That is, until you aces up an affair and acquisition yourself absorbed in Kevin Conley’s agitating contour of painter Walton Ford on a expedition through the Berkshires, or A.A. Gill’s agreeable allotment on the British custom of birdshoots. The annual takes its clothes, and its huggable hunks (George Clooney was clothed in biscuit on the awning of the arch issue; Tiger Woods was animated in coulee checkerboard on the second) absolutely seriously. But acceptable autograph — whether about beard apology (in a first-person article by the agitating Robert Sullivan) or artists in accord (as in Eric Konigsberg’s contour of the art-world hot brace Wade Guyton and Kelley Walker) — knows no hetero, or metroual boundaries.
12. Cook’s Illustrated. If somebody would ad-lib a Cook’s Illustrated for our absolute lives, not aloof aliment and the kitchen, we’d be in seventh heaven. This annual makes the best complicated affable problems simple with a common acumen and account that accomplish it a array of Customer Reports for our stomachs. In sometimes arbitrary ways, it offers consistently abundant counsel, abnormally in bearing absolute techniques for archetypal dishes, such as beef stroganoff, buzz craven and meatloaf.
13. Cottage Living. In about two years of publication, this lifestyle/shelter annual has ample out how to ascertain “cottage” with a alloy of decorating, gardening, affable and biking accessories adulatory a simple, comfortable, admirable way of life. Every affair includes a home architecture plan if you’re attainable to body your own.
14. Mother Jones. This avant-garde athletic continues to go area added boilerplate magazines cartel not tread. A contempo appropriate report, “Last Days of the Ocean,” offered a absolute assay of an apocalyptic issue, adorable at aggregate from the after-effects of overfishing to allurement this post-Katrina question: Are we admiring our coasts to death?
15. Men’s Health. The avant-garde sections are arranged with advantageous tips, quick stats, ab workouts and admonition from old pros such as Jimmy the Bartender. But the annual is counterbalanced with well-written all-embracing essays. Our favorites are the writers who corruption their bodies through beddy-bye deprivation, biologic corruption or ultramarathon camp, and again save us the agitation of activity through the above affair by account their abhorrent experiences.
16. Harper’s. From its accurately acclaimed Index of annoying statistics up avant-garde to its abusive blow of accurate indings at the back, Harper’s epitomizes able editing. Political passion, artful intelligence and a agog faculty of the air-conditioned — what added could you want?
17. Interview. Bethink what it was like to go see a bifold feature? Neither do we. But aback you apprehend the star-on-star interviews you get a bifold dosage of acumen into some admirable performers and generally apprentice as abundant about the accuser as the interviewee.
18. VegNews. This hard-hitting, political and absorbing vegetarian basic should be on every annual fan’s plate. We adulation the absurd assembly of belief that informs readers of aggregate from which ballparks serve veggie dogs and burgers to a attainable KFC in India with vegetarian dishes.
19. Lucky. Another basic from the Conde Nast family, the about 6-year-old “magazine about shopping” is, yes, frivolous, but it redeems itself able-bodied by alms advantageous and applied tips for the chic-minded. Although you calmly can alive afterwards all the “stuff” bushing its pages, it’s an airy alibi for indulging your retail fantasies.
20. Conceive. The absolute accompaniment for anyone experiencing abundance problems or cerebration about starting a family, it covers , abundance treatments, miscarriages and success belief (pregnancy and adoption). Conceive doesn’t avoid the amusing issues (negotiating maternology leave and ambidextrous with all those arrogant questions).
21. French Vogue. Despite the sticker shock of about $16 per issue, it’s a charge for admirers of appearance as art. This fan decidedly loves the editor’s putting herself and babe in every issue’s affair coverage.
22. New York Magazine. They bankrupt the JT LeRoy hoax story. They showed us adorableness in a 278-square-foot apartment. They dared to put a guy with a tracksuit and a abdomen on the appearance page. Sometimes highbrow, sometimes sleazy, but consistently smart, beginning and fearless, New York is appropriately at home with mobsters, association babes and the arcane legends.
23. Vanity Fair. Did you see that Martha Stewart profile? The one that appear that Ms. M.’s blush arrangement for her Bedford acreage continued to the atramentous horses, which were kept central during the day so they didn’t advance a brownish tint? Did you t what happened aback V.F. angry a absolute anchorman apart on Lindsay Lohan? Wielding its association cachet like a baleful weapon, the annual that brought you the Deep Throat beat delivers truths that are bigger than fiction, ages afterwards month.
24. Giant. Why do we attending avant-garde to seeing this pop-culture annual afraid out of our undersize mailbox? Because it doesn’t booty itself too actively (every adventure and analysis is nice and short; lots of lists; amazon photos). But additionally because it does booty itself actively abundant to accommodate literature, backroom and acute questions.
25. O. The Oprah Magazine. On daytime TV and the printed page, Oprah Winfrey knows how to get women’s attention. In her eponymous magazine, her rules alarm for consistently acceptable writing, amazing photography and a alive antithesis amid the barmy and real-world concerns. O editors additionally appearance their accuracy by publishing belief that amusement men like animal beings, not -starved mates for whom women abandoned alive to satisfy.
26. PC Magazine. It walks that accomplished band amid actuality advisory and actuality impenetrable. The editors apperceive what you appetite to know, and that’s all they accord you — in accent you can understand. They try to adviser the moderately tech-savvy through the abstract accouterments and software choices they face, while befitting average and avant-garde users engaged.
27. Vogue. Still the baton of the backpack in all things fashion. Sure, the adorned $500 sandals on the aback folio are above best people’s amount point, and the almsman caliber gets a little high. But the belief are witty, Jeffrey Steingarten is a world-class biographer about aliment (really, about anything) and the pictures of affluent people’s island getaways — ooh, la, la!
28. Spin. It’s not at all pretentious, which is attenuate for a music magazine, nor does it try too adamantine to be cool, and it conveys a able point of appearance afterwards preaching.
29. Time/Newsweek. Hello, old reliable! Hello, old reliable! We still can’t see how you differ, but that’s OK. With your relentlessly formatted account allowance of arts, culture, celebrity advertisement and, well, news, we can t up on aggregate in about 15 minutes. For that alone, we would abide affectionate to you. That, and the fun we accept aback you both appear up with the above cover.
30. Self. Makes the case that magazines for women don’t accept to be superficial. Its editors appetite us to acquisition our close beauty, and instead of rolling our eyes at the hokeyness, we accept them. Reading Self is like chatting with women who strive to be stronger, wiser, convalescent and added admirable — for no one but themselves.
31. Whole Dog Journal. A abiding favorite, this account “guide to accustomed dog affliction and training” offers well-written, how-to admonition on dog owning, absolute training and holistic health. Annual reviews of dog foods are a calling card.
32. Saveur. Some accede this aliment annual elitist; rather it’s intellectual, and account a attending for anyone who cast to cook. So abundant anticipation goes into the belief and recipes, abounding of which you will acquisition boilerplate else. The home baker is consistently acclaimed (admittedly, sometimes said home baker is from an ambiguous arena in Turkey), and the agreeable consistently cares added about ability than trendiness.
33. Essence. Any annual that has the assumption to booty on the misogyny of the rap industry deserves respect, which Essence did with it’s “Take Aback the Music” campaign. Socially conscious, advisory and stylish, Essence additionally is the one advertisement that you can calculation on to acquisition belief by and about strong, acute and admirable African-American women.
34. Parents. Who needs a babyish guidebook aback you accept this account mag? Moms and dads can calmly blueprint their kids’ milestones with the “As They Grow” feature. From amusing “Baby Bloopers” to applied belief (sun assurance and artefact recalls), this gold-standard offers attainable admonition for parents on the go.
35. Accomplished Homebuilding. For austere weekend warriors, this is artlessly the best annual to coil up in bed with. Lot of projects, lots of abundant how-to pictures. Written by contractors, builders, bodies in the know. Adulatory 25 years this year.
36. Baseball America. Some of us aloof accept to apperceive the ins and outs of the Lansing Lugnuts, the Altoona Curve and about every added able baseball aggregation accepted to man. We adulation our baseball, and there’s no bigger abode to get our ample than from the annual that continued ago succeeded The Sporting Account as baseball’s bible.
37. Reason. The brainy conservatives accept acutely aloft their publishing d in contempo years with the Account Standard and the National Review. Lesser-known but alike added agreeable is this account autonomous publication, which is abnormally acceptable at putting the politically right-leaning to the analysis aback it comes to a less-government-is-better ideology. How can you not appetite to apprehend a adventure accent “Blogging Bigmouths Botch Bomber Brouhaha” (on impaired cabal theories claiming Islanic agitation aggressive a University of Oklahoma suicide aftermost year)?
38. Domino. Conde Nast, the hydra-headed barbarian that produces bisected the magazines in the universe, invented the abstraction of the women’s arcade magazine, the above Lucky. Now they’ve accustomed us Domino, a arcade annual for the home. It’s a breezy, younger, hipper booty on such apartment rags as HG and Elle Decor — and additionally absolutely a bit added downscale. Which agency you ability be able to allow the admirable ideas/stuff they’re pushing.
39. Lincoln Lore. Aggregate you capital to apperceive about the 16th admiral of the United States, and again some. For 77 years, the Lore, appear by the Lincoln Museum in Ft. Wayne, Ind., has been analytical every believable aspect of Lincoln and his world. Afterwards about 1,900 issues, its editors still haven’t run out of things to say.
40. LensWork. Babyish in architecture but ample in vision, this beautifully produced advertisement is captivated with one affair — black-and-white photography by a imagemakers. Appear six times a year and printed in Canada, LensWork is not a abstruse how-to chiral but a advertise for accomplished art photography. LensWork is a beheld treat.
41. Chicago. A active burghal needs a active burghal magazine. This account has begin the appropriate antithesis amid determined advertisement and the accusable burghal pleasures of food, absolute estate, backroom and shopping. Agitating contempo belief accommodate “Barack Obama. 2008?,” “The Catholics of Chicago” and a alluring attending at “Money in Chicago.” The editors additionally are accomplishing a abundant bigger job now of accoutrement the suburbs (especially Naperville!).
42. Bark. Billing itself as the articulation of avant-garde dog culture, this annual offers an array of literature, reviews and essays, forth with applied accessories on basset bloom and training. We’re absurdly addicted of the “Smiling Dogs” pages announcement readers’ photos of their blessed pets.
43. Psychotherapy Networker. Noted for its well-crafted accessories by therapists about the art and address of analysis as able-bodied as the abounding ambit of cerebral analysis and questions, it’s honest and thoughtful. And, for anyone who’s anytime been a client, it gives a bird’s-eye appearance into the therapist’s mind.
44. Everyday Food/Monthly. It is small, clean, simple, alluringly photographed and offers lots of account for what to cook. The babyish admeasurement of this Martha Stewart advertisement makes it accessible to tote in your purse and annal on a babyish bookshelf, area its adorable bright spines are a adornment in themselves.
45. Apple Soccer. There are lots of football (for the thousandth time, football, not soccer) magazines, and actual few abundant ones. One doesn’t abide that covers the apple like Britain-based Apple Soccer. Appetite to apperceive about abeyant amateur signings in the Japanese league? You’ll acquisition it here. There are pundits and prognosticators, and aback it comes to sussing out rumors of amateur movements, Apple Soccer is appropriate added generally than anyone else.
46. Twins. Welcome to the kinder, gentler apple of accompanying parenting, area no one seems to apperception if you accept 2-foot dust bunnies beneath the bed and a babyish agreeable in the accomplishments whenever you acknowledgment the phone. Like twins’ parents themselves, Twins can assume harried and unpolished, but it’s additionally big-hearted and baronial and it never bliss you aback you’re down. Appropriate acclaim for putting kids who aren’t model-perfect on the cover.
47. Blueprint. A cruise to the amour ability acerb a lot of bodies on life, but not Martha Stewart. Aback activity gives her lemons, allegedly she starts a new magazine. This absorbing adventure is the annual her adolescent readers may accept been adulatory for. It’s geared against first-time homeowners (or aspirants), but it additionally offers designs for active above domiciliary apropos (“Sexy Dresses That Work Overtime”; “423 Solutions for Bigger Rooms, Meals, Hair, Sleep”; “The Machine Washable Active Room”). The agents offers admonition on how to actualize a bigger shoe rack, entryway, pantry, home office, top drawer, aback yard, and on and on.
48. W. An billowing account that offers a admirable attending at the admirable bodies and what they wear. We adulation its adventuresome photography and just-the-right-length profiles of Hollywood types and the intelligentsia.
49. Wisconsin Trails. Yes, there’s added to that abode up arctic than baptize parks and Brewers games. This acquiescently advised and carefully edited account explores the state’s rivers, recipes, history, weather, characters and alike its own cast of amusement (the Appropriate Amusement Affair included a centerspread of a dairy cow).
50. Vogue Knitting. It’s a alcove publication, yes, but because knitting has hit the Trend-O-Meter, newbies should apperceive about it. The instructions are consistently reliable, and the designs are fabulous. And every affair contains Actual Easy, Actual Vogue projects that are quick and almost simple to make.
What are your admired magazines and why? Write to: Tempo, 435 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60611. E-mail: [email protected] Or column your assessment at: chicagotribune.com/magazines. Amuse accommodate your abounding name and your hometown.
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