The Economist has always had great lighter fare, and I admit that, on occasion, I've flipped past the Asian currency updates, straight to their engaging book reviews and biographies.
Turns out they've noticed, and have recently come out with a new lifestyle magazine, called Economist 1843. It's sort of a cross between the New Yorker, Wired, the Harvard Business Review, and National Geographic.
The July/August issue did not disappoint, with poetic consumer reviews of the latest robotic vacuum cleaners, a feature on how England's famous boarding school Eton (alumni include actor Eddie Redmayne) is re-inventing itself based on merit not bloodlines, and a great case study of Hermes' most expensive handbags and the careful dance such Veblen-goods makers have to play between supply-and-demand.
1843 fixes another problem I had when subscribing to the Economist - it just came too darn often, creating a sort of subscriber guilt. 1843 happily comes just every 2 months.
And what's the 1843 stand for? Apparently that's when the Economist was started, meaning they've been in business for almost 10x as long as Google. Good to see them innovating a little :).
If Economist-light sounds like it might be your cup of tea, you can pick up a copy at most WholeFoods checkout stands.