One of the big growth areas of the magazine business over the past decade has been in the category of city magazines. Where once upon a time only a metropolis the size of New York or London could support a magazine devoted to the experience of life in the city, you now find a wealth of periodicals named for their hometowns: Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, even Salt Lake City. Some of them survive-a lot of them don't.
Looking through these magazines, though, you can see one reason why. Most are distinguished by only the cover and the addesses within. Rules and formulas derived from other city magazines are followed rigidly: the events calendar; the food column; the interview with a celebrity; the fashion piece; and, if you're lucky, a semi-solid piece of reporting on a local business. Because of their purpose--to serve all members of a community--they must be general. Unfortunately, that doesn't make them very interesting to read.
Expect Plant's to be more than that. Our `city' is the community of readers in Portland and the rest of the world. Our interests are as wide as our readership's, and we aim to print reviews of anything that's worth reading twice. Plant's Review of Books' reviews reflect this by emphasizing not simply the latest and best, but books that may have been overlooked or just ignored in the past. Our features may not always fall into the category of what you'd expect to find in a book review, but we guarantee they'll be worth a second read.