Horror and Hope in a Russian School

Every Friday, Vulture finds a great story that's a little too long to read on the computer screen. Fiction, long-form narrative journalism, epic blog sagas — any of these could be your Weekend Read. Print it out on the office printer, smuggle it home, and curl up with it after brunch.

This week, Esquire won the National Magazine Award for Reporting, for C. J. Chivers's "The School," a riveting tick-tock of the 2004 hostage drama in a school in Beslan, Russia, that appeared in the June issue. Yes, it's long. Yes, it's scary and sad. But it's the kind of journalism that makes you understand the world much better than you did before, even as it dwells on the inexplicable. And it introduces the reader to an unforgettable cast of characters, from the father whose knowledge of bomb disposal may save his family to the photographer who cheats death over and over. Heartbreaking and immaculately reported, "The School" is today's Weekend Read.

The School [Esquire]