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Friday, July 15 2005

1215: The Year of the Magna Carta by Danny Danziger and John Gillingham

Their analysis reveals the popular culture of those days and slays many mythical dragons along the way.


Thursday, July 14 2005

78 Reasons Why Your Book May Never Be Published and 14 Reasons Why It Just Might by Pat Walsh

Walsh's advice is not for the sensitive. He comes out swinging with the very first reason your book will not be published: you have not written it.


Tuesday, July 12 2005

Monkey Business: The True Story of the Scopes Trial by Dr. Marvin Olasky and John Perry

Olasky and Perry feel that creationists got a bad shake in the Scopes trial due to a liberal media bias, and that the time is nigh for a new battle.


Friday, July 8 2005

Meet the Beatles: A Cultural History of the Band That Shook Youth, Gender, and the World by Steven D

At the outset of this interesting and often incisive cultural history, Steven Stark tackles this obvious question: 'Why on earth would anyone need another book about the Beatles?'"


Thursday, July 7 2005

How to Lose Your Ass and Regain Your Life: Reluctant Confessions of a Big-Butted Star by Kirstie All

The most refreshing aspect of Kirstie Alley's story is that it's her story -- find yourself offended by that triple-X laundry service comment? Doesn't matter, this isn't your fat-experience.


Wednesday, July 6 2005

This Is Pop: In Search of the Elusive at Experience Music Project by Eric Weisbard

'Creativity has become reduced to taste games,' says Reynolds, and thus 'music for music's sake' has become the primary force driving the authorial role in pop. Will someone knight this guy, already?"


Tuesday, July 5 2005

Richard’s Poor Almanac by Richard Thompson

In the realm of modern newspaper publishing, a strip like Richard's Poor Almanac is an anomaly. The well-documented homogenization of the funny pages has resulted in increasingly generalized and toothless strips aimed straight at the largest possible demographics.


Friday, July 1 2005

A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby

Suicide strikes me as a singularly solitary endeavor, but these four wankers all choose the one spot in all of London at the one time in all of the year when they'd be likely to encounter other suicidal roof-climbers.


Wednesday, June 29 2005

Acts of Faith by Philip Caputo

Doug and Quinette's Manichean worldview proves particularly disastrous when combined with a singularly American strain of optimism, a kind of militant Pollyanna spirit often expressed by neoconservatives and some liberal humanitarians.


Tuesday, June 28 2005

Thirty-Three Swoons: A Novel by Martha Cooley

Danny is a nagging, childish pain, Camilla's ex-husband is just too damn nice to be believable, and Camilla's best friend Stuart, the former mime now book shop owner, is the poster boy for the self-absorbed pretentious arty-farty.


Friday, June 24 2005

War by Candlelight by Daniel Alarcón

The revolutionary heart, truly the essence of the Lima depicted within these pages, never grows old.


Thursday, June 23 2005

Black Virgin Mountain by Larry Heinemann

Heinemann launches into a second-person narrative guiding the reader through a tense meditation as a soldier exploring the dark and dangerous unknown. The book breathes again (a stale, humid, underground breath) and it's as if we had never left the genuinely captivating part of his colorful brain.


Wednesday, June 22 2005

The Ocean at Home: An Illustrated History of the Aquarium by Bernd Brunner

Finding a way to keep the creatures alive made it possible for more folks, the average bourgeois, to keep a little of the sea in the front room.


Monday, June 20 2005

All Yesterday’s Parties: The Velvet Underground in Print: 1966-71 by Clinton Heylin

LA Free Press's Robert Gold gets the prize for best scatological-gastrointestinal conceit in a review, 'Her {Maureen Tucker's} heavy, continuous 4/4 outpouring on the drums slams into your bowels and crawls out your asshole.'"


Friday, June 17 2005

Snow White and Russian Red by Dorota Maslowska

A Polish novel that drolly depicts the country as a place where Snow White is a whore as love has been replaced by meaningless sex and strong drugs.


Thursday, June 16 2005

Misfortune by Wesley Stace

Misfortune is a musically rousing treat, hitting Dickensonian notes with Stace's wistful prose.


Wednesday, June 15 2005

In a Queer Time & Place: Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives by Judith Halberstam

In a Queer Time displays Halberstam's sophisticated understanding of contemporary culture in a plain and engaging tone.


Tuesday, June 14 2005

Moondust: In Search of the Men Who Fell to Earth by Andrew Smith

Smith has clearly harboured a fascination with the moon landings since childhood and has translated this enthusiasm into a grown up project, properly researched and examined with the sober eye of adulthood.


Monday, June 13 2005

Godlike by Richard Hell

The overall affect is the same as if your best friend called one day and said, 'An elephant walked into my apartment today and to get it out I had to beat up a rabbi,' and then hung up.


Friday, June 10 2005

Breath and Bones by Susann Cokal

It was an exciting time to be in America in all of its gritty splendor, and Cokal depicts it with authority and obvious pleasure.


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