Thursday, March 23 2017
Jason Reid’s Get Out of My Room! takes us inside the private enclaves of the adolescent being, revealing both individual and collective anxieties and expectations.
Wednesday, March 15 2017
Does Humpty Dumpty freak you out more or less than salmonella? Bloomsbury's Object Lessons books offer fodder for daily mindfulness.
Tuesday, March 14 2017
Much in the way the women of Persona and 3 Women assimilate into lives of their objects of affection, the women of Single White Female experience a similar fatal mutualism.
Monday, March 13 2017
Has the US become a country where crime pays? Could the corporate death penalty help rein in America's criminal banks?
Friday, March 10 2017
These cats blew all night and day a new, astonishing page into the jazz lexicon. What they couldn't do was get gigs in jazz clubs.
Friday, March 3 2017
As autocratic leaders slowly take over the First World, popular representations of a Third World coup take on renewed significance.
Min Jin Lee’s novel Pachinko is a multi-generational look at the little-known plight of Koreans living in Japan.
Tuesday, February 28 2017
A review of Schadenfreude, a Love Story, including some personal observations and self-identification that connect to a memoir with a really long title and lots of German words
Monday, February 27 2017
Where Chance the Rapper injects spirituality into hip-hop, Muslim Cool injects hip-hop into spirituality.
Friday, February 17 2017
This novel is reminiscent of Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life (1946) and Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol -- but with a twist.
Thursday, February 9 2017
If punk died the day the Clash signed to CBS, what were Rotten, Jones, Cook, and Matlock doing reforming the Sex Pistols in 1996?
Friday, February 3 2017
These books create a visually mesmerizing mix of sci-fi and fantasy, where rocket ships cause men to stumble upon gods and monsters that occupy the distant corners of the universe.
Wednesday, January 18 2017
Chait's defense of gradualist politics-as-usual undermines the supposedly audacious achievements of President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party.
Wednesday, January 11 2017
Now, more than ever, public intellectual scientists like Dawkins are needed to counter the forces of faith, fiction, and farce dominating our so-called “post-fact” society.
Thursday, January 5 2017
Steven Galloway's sexual harassment case, and the literary establishment's response to it, reveals a lot about how much work still needs to be done in combating misogyny.
Monday, December 19 2016
Under a Trump Administration, is it better to be a rebel with a cause, or a reformer with a platform? "Red" Ellen Wilkenson's biography gives us some insight into these difficulties.
Thursday, December 15 2016
How I worry when I drink, and why Distilled Knowledge is diffuse knowledge.
Wednesday, December 14 2016
Terkel biographer Alen Wieder reminds us that if he were alive today, Studs would actually listen to the voices of the Trump voters -- all of them.
Tuesday, December 13 2016
The sixth novel in John Burdett's Bangkok detective series is a dispiriting, dismaying mess. Is there still hope for recovery or is the series in a death spiral?
Monday, December 12 2016
Novelist Laird Koenig managed to capture the world of children with an exactitude that is rare nowadays. His children are often sagacious -- and sometimes they're sociopaths.