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A British Gem Is Back in Print: Barbara Trapido’s Brother of the More Famous Jack
By November 25, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

A British Gem Is Back in Print: Barbara Trapido’s Brother of the More Famous Jack

I’ve been anticipating the reprint of British author Barbara Trapido’s 1982 debut novel, Brother of the More Famous Jack, for some time now—and it’s finally here! I’ve read pretty much everything that Barbara Trapido has written and have written about her here before. I have found no one else to match Trapido’s wit, style, and uncanny ear […]

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Phil Klay’s Redeployment and Other New War Classics

Phil Klay’s Redeployment and Other New War Classics

As has been the case throughout the ages, some of our most powerful writing recounts what men and women experience at war and what they bring back home. Last century gave us classics like All Quiet on the Western Front, The Naked and the Dead, Catch-22, and The Things They Carried. Though this century is young, […]

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Dusty Book: Erasure
By November 13, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

Dusty Book: Erasure

Here’s one that begs another read. In Percival Everett’s Erasure (2001), a black author, sick and tired of no one reading his uber-literary historical novels, (he reaches his breaking point when he discovers his books—including his latest novel, which involves Greek philosophers—on the “African American Studies” shelves at Borders) writes a ridiculous spoof of contemporary street lit called My Pafology. He […]

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Vampires Rising

Vampires Rising

The Vampire Lestat is back, people. It’s been nearly 40 years since Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire burned up the bestseller charts. Ten years later she let Lestat de Lioncourt tell his own story in The Vampire Lestat.  In Prince Lestat  she adds to the legend of the neck-licking Lestat. With bloodsuckers back on the bestseller list, […]

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Dusty Book: Through a Glass Darkly
By November 7, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

Dusty Book: Through a Glass Darkly

Karleen Koen’s Through a Glass Darkly (1986) is one of my go-to historical fiction finds. It has a strong female protagonist, rich historical detail, and both a prequel and a sequel, to boot, for if the patron enjoys it. Set in eighteenth-century England, it’s the tale of headstrong Barbara Alderley, who was born into a rapidly declining noble […]

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Richard Ford’s Frank Bascombe Is in Good Company

Richard Ford’s Frank Bascombe Is in Good Company

Richard Ford writes the kind of sharp, lasting literary fiction that defines “contemporary classic.” (And, sure, the Pulitzer doesn’t hurt.) He’s spent nearly 30 years chronicling the life of the Frank Bascombe. Let Me Be Frank with You, out this month, is the fourth novel to feature the East Coast divorced dad who’s made the transition from sportwriter to real-estate […]

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Dusty Book: Women’s Fiction for Readers of All Ages
By November 4, 2014 0 Comments Read More →

Dusty Book: Women’s Fiction for Readers of All Ages

Laura Moriarty’s The Center of Everything (2008) is a sensitive and moving portrait of a precocious girl and her single mom living just shy of real poverty in 1980s Kansas. Evelyn is a gifted 10-year-old but risks failing school because her home life is chaotic. Her mother, Tina, just can’t catch a lucky break. The […]

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More Funny Ladies Like Amy Poehler? Yes, Please!

More Funny Ladies Like Amy Poehler? Yes, Please!

Smart Girl champion Amy Poehler’s candid, funny memoir Yes, Please came out to rave reviews this week. Use the buzz to talk up some other funny ladies making the switch from screen to stacks. Bossypants, by Tina Fey Girl Walks into a Bar…: Comedy Calamities, Dating Disasters, and a Midlife Miracle, by Rachel Dratch Happy Accidents, […]

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Dusty Book: Our Kind, by Kate Walbert

Dusty Book: Our Kind, by Kate Walbert

Kate Walbert’s novel in stories, Our Kind (2004), moves from collective to individual voices as country-club housewives from the 1950s pass through the ’60s to the ’70s, transitioning from newlyweds to empty-nesters, from selfless to independent. A dark, brave, sad humor can be found in many observations in the book. The women accept but secretly lament lost loves […]

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Falling for Paris

Falling for Paris

In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines lived twelve little girls in two straight lines. To which I might add: It’s been seventy-five years since we first read of Madeline’s adventures before going to bed. We might associate the City of Light with springtime, but there’s no bad time to visit […]

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