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Author Archive: Michael Ruzicka

Michael Ruzicka, Office Manager, was raised in suburban Los Angeles, received a BA in Creative Writing/Poetry at UC Santa Cruz, then moved to Birmingham, AL, where he spent five years owning an independent bookstore and earned an MLIS. He has brought his librarian skills to Vanderbilt’s Television News Archive, Battle Ground Academy, The Museum of Contemporary Art-Chicago, and the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Michael is very excited to be a part of Booklist and call Chicago his home.

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The Poetics of Everyday Life: Poetry Books for Fans of PATERSON

The Poetics of Everyday Life: Poetry Books for Fans of PATERSON

A subject that long ago captured my creative spirit has been making quiet waves in the cinematic world this year. Paterson, written and directed  by Jim Jarmusch and set in Paterson, New Jersey, concerns an enigmatic bus driver—also named Paterson, played by Adam Driver—as he observes his world and takes notes in poetry. The beautiful ritual […]

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Five Novels about Literary Uncoupling for Fans of A SEPARATION

Five Novels about Literary Uncoupling for Fans of A SEPARATION

Katie Kitamura’s second novel, A Separation, has been making the rounds as the next gotta-read-it title. (And I’ve spotted it more than a few times on the train lately.) It is no surprise, given the book’s intriguing details—missing spouse, a marriage besmirched by apparent indifference and frequent cheating—with Greece as their backdrop. But then, literary uncoupling has […]

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A Dystopia for Every Reader

A Dystopia for Every Reader

Readers are clamoring for dystopian fiction. (Apparently, not everybody has a well-worn, highlighted, dog-eared copy of 1984 sitting on their shelves.) I’d like to suggest some dystopian books from my own library to read during these very interesting times. (For a list of contemporary American dystopian novels, click here.)   Reality-based Dystopia Open Doors and Three […]

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Food Books: A Holiday Wishlist

Food Books: A Holiday Wishlist

I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about and planning food dishes and/or events where good food and drink will be consumed. To accompany Booklist’s Editors’ Choice for 2016, I felt there should be a mention of the books that delved into the delectable bites and intoxicating spirits in 2016. Bourbon: The Rise, Fall, and […]

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10 Books for Fans of PBS’s SOUNDBREAKING

10 Books for Fans of PBS’s SOUNDBREAKING

Over the last week I have discovered PBS’s new documentary series Soundbreaking. I have not caught up on all eight episodes yet, but what I have seen was immediately addicting. The show starts with the producer’s role in the creation of pop music and expands to include histories of punk, hip-hop, and MTV—all the while mindful of […]

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Leonard Cohen: Passes Softly

Leonard Cohen: Passes Softly

This has been a long week. Making it longer still is the recent news that the legendary gentleman of many beautiful songs and even more poetic words, Leonard Cohen, had passed away last night. I had the privilege of seeing him live at the Chicago Theater back in May 2009. It was his first Chicago […]

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