Reviews > Books
War Changes People, Though Not Necessarily for the Better

Predating Suite Française in time and tone The Fires of Autumn is an amazingly prescient look at war and greed.

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Diasporic Memories of a Jewish Family

Strangers in a strange land has been the universal theme of the Jewish story. Roger Cohen's 'A Girl from Human Street' provides an emotional account of his family's diasporic journey.

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‘Litpop - Writing and Popular Music’ Suffocates From a Lack of the Lively Air of Opinion

This anthology is meant to study two of the most lively artistic fields on the planet, and yet it's bogged down by articles of no great substance and no great joy.

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‘Run Like Crazy Run Like Hell’ Is Outstanding—Just Don’t Call It a Graphic Novel

I can’t say with certainty who today’s greatest French practitioner of the ‘Ninth Art’ is, but I can say that Jacques Tardi is the greatest I have read.

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The Science of the Yuk and the Yum of Things

John McQuaid blends history, scientific research, cultural studies, and personal anecdotes to create a lively and engaging history of taste.

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James Wood on Why Fiction and Criticism Matter

James Wood is exactly the sort of champion of belles lettres we need, and this collection is proof of it.

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‘The Light of the World’ Explores How to Cope When a Light Goes Out

In April 2012, Ficremariam Ghebreyseus collapsed on the treadmill in the house he shared with wife Elizabeth Alexander. Yet her memoir stubbornly adheres to joy.

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‘H Is for Hawk’ and for Healing

This book about grief and hawks and T.H. White is so beautifully written that even readers unable to tell robins from parakeets will be entranced.

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Sandra Newman’s ‘The Country of Ice Cream Star’ Is a Heavy Read

There’s talk of war, rape, disease -- all things we associate with the worst of adulthood. But Newman never lets us forget that these are children.

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Michel Onfray’s Philosopher’s Guide to Good Food

From Nietzsche's 'Sausages of the Anti-Christ' to Kant's 'Ethical Alcoholism', the French celebrity philosopher serves up a sumptuous smorgasbord of philosophical plates.

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‘Soul!’, the Groundbreaking Public TV Show From the Black Power Era Is Rescued From the Archives

Musical acts ranged from Rahsaan Roland Kirk to Ashford & Simpson. Nikki Giovanni and James Baldwin interrogated each other in a two-episode arc. Try finding a mix like that in the current PBS lineup.

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‘Preaching on Wax’ Is an Introduction to a Neglected Subset of Early Black Pop and Its Biggest Star

Rev. J.M. Gates was a hit from his 1926 debut, worlds apart from his stodgy predecessors. His best work can still really get the goosebumps going.

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Crossing the Troll Bridge With ‘Marvel Comics in the 1980s’

It’s almost as if Pierre Comtois is trolling the reader, treating the printed page as a message board on which to make fans go crazy.

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Now, Voyager: Barry Hill’s ‘Peacemongers’

'Peacemongers', by the Australian poet and journalist Barry Hill, is an epic travelogue and probing meditation on the importance and elusiveness of peace.

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‘The Lost Boys Symphony’ Has a Fascinating Concept and Strong Plotting and Pacing

This realistic novel about a collegiate love triangle develops into a fascinating genre-bender about time travel and mental illness.

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Why Are Critics Falling All Over Deepti Kapoor’s ‘A Bad Character’?

Too many reviews of this book universalise Idha’s experience and praise it for providing a window into the Indian woman’s experience. Which women would that be?

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‘Times Beach’ Gives Us Theater, Free-form Jazz, Art Cinema, and Southern Gothic Literature

Times Beach is less a collection of poetry as it is an anthology of performance art presented under the guise of poetry.

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The Romance of Obsession in ‘Schubert’s Winter Journey’

Tenor Ian Bostridge has sung Winterreise hundreds of times and here gives it the equivalent of 33 1/3 entry -- only denser in substance, more elaborately written, and with some fascinating tangentials.

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Coming Full Circle as the Children of Immigrants

The Blind Writer is less about South Asians and the Indian-American experience as it is about Indian-American men and their (in)abilities to navigate life.

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‘The Queen’s Bed’, the Queen’s Body, and the Body of the State

A rigorous, middle ground between lurid populist histories and dry academia, Anna Whitelock provides an excellent biography as a well trained historian.

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Kiasmos: 26 May 2015 - Rough Trade NYC (Photos)

// Notes from the Road

"Kiasmos is the exciting, dark and trippy electronic project from Ólafur Arnalds and Janus Rasmussen.

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