The Dreyfus Affair

Try to imagine any of the trivial political controversies of 2012 still earning a book-length study a century from now. Impossible, no? But France's Dreyfus Affair of 1894 was much grander stuff. Piers Paul Read's fresh and comprehensive take on the scandal sheds new light on Dreyfus's personal life, looks closely at the poor man's unjust exile, and tries to assess just what endowed this incident with its long-lasting fascination.

April 19: "What you see first, after the starting gun's crack, is a column of bobbing runners, thousands of them, surging downhill..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…