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Wednesday, 13 April 2016 12:36

Water, water nowhere Thirst'

Novel offers up an arid end of the world

Published in Buzz
Wednesday, 06 April 2016 11:37

Tuesday Nights in 1980'

Debut novel visits pivotal moment in NYC's art scene

Published in Buzz
Wednesday, 30 March 2016 12:23

Gregory, Gregory Hates his Food'

Great pictures, mixed message

Published in Style
Wednesday, 30 March 2016 12:18

'Got Here as Soon as I Could'

Charming look at Maine through fresh eyes

Published in Style
Wednesday, 23 March 2016 14:20

Feast on The Never-Open Desert Diner'

Mystery/thriller features quirky, oddball characters

Part of the fun in picking up a debut novel is the lack of any real frame of reference. Sure, you might be able to glean some information from a synopsis or a book jacket. Perhaps the author has other writings short fiction and the like from which you might discern a sense of style. However, the ultimate truth is that you don't really know what you're going to get. It's a roll of the dice, with all that that entails. Sometimes, you're disappointed.

And sometimes as with James Anderson's 'The Never-Open Desert Diner' you wind up a winner.

Published in Style
Wednesday, 23 March 2016 14:20

Feast on The Never-Open Desert Diner'

Mystery/thriller features quirky, oddball characters

Part of the fun in picking up a debut novel is the lack of any real frame of reference. Sure, you might be able to glean some information from a synopsis or a book jacket. Perhaps the author has other writings short fiction and the like from which you might discern a sense of style. However, the ultimate truth is that you don't really know what you're going to get. It's a roll of the dice, with all that that entails. Sometimes, you're disappointed.

And sometimes as with James Anderson's 'The Never-Open Desert Diner' you wind up a winner.

Published in Style
Wednesday, 02 March 2016 06:33

The Triangle's titanic trio

The Legends Club' looks at three giants of college hoops

One of the most exciting times of the entire sports year is fast approaching. The NCAA basketball tournament has reached the point of being a cultural touchstone dozens of games playing out over the course of weeks, with schools large and small taking their shots at the immortality that is a national championship.

College basketball has always lent itself to fierce rivalries, but perhaps the fiercest of them all was and to a degree still is located in the state of North Carolina.

Published in Sports
Wednesday, 17 February 2016 09:27

The consequences of genius - A Doubter's Almanac'

Novel explores the powerful, punishing effects of true brilliance

'Talent is a flame. Genius is a fire.' Bernard Williams

What is the true cost of genius? How does a single-minded fanatical brilliance impact the rest of one's life? What effects does it have on interpersonal relationships and one's sense of self? Great problems require great solutions, but those solutions can often prove to be obstacles in their own right.

Ethan Canin's 'A Doubter's Almanac' (Random House, $28) tells the tale of the issues raised by the obsessive genius of one particularly gifted family.

Published in Buzz
Wednesday, 10 February 2016 18:48

A trek through The High Mountains of Portugal'

Yann Martel's latest novel a generation-spanning narrative

Magical realism has become something of a go-to in the realm of literary fiction in recent years. While there have always been practitioners of said magical thinking, it seems that more and more authors have been dipping their toes into that pool or even diving in headfirst.

As with any burgeoning crest of stylistic popularity, the degree of success varies wildly from work to work. Some use magical realism to plumb new depths and explore new ideas, while others seemingly just haphazardly tacked on some weirdness so that they might exploit a trend.

Published in Buzz
Tuesday, 19 January 2016 22:32

On the road again with Bill Bryson

Re-exploring Great Britain in 'The Road to Little Dribbling'

It's time to take yet another walk with everybody's favorite literary pedestrian.

It has been 20 years since Bill Bryson's 'Notes from a Small Island' was published. That book's unique blend of exasperated affection and curmudgeonly wit is beloved on both sides of the Atlantic, both in the author's adopted home and his native land.

Published in Buzz
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