Reviews > Books

30 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

A View of the Ocean by Jan de Hartog

With any luck, this deeply affecting posthumous memoir, centered on the awful process of watching his elderly mother die, will expose de Hartog to at least a few more American readers.

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Misunder- estimated and Overunder- appreciated

Those in the satire business have been fed a steady and highly nutritious diet of Bush's stubbornness, lack of curiosity, cockiness, managerial incompetence, blatant corruption, and verbal ineptitude.

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29 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

The Art of Free Cooperation by

The cynic in me desperately wants to make fun of this book. Can someone throw out the word “utopia” again?

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Against the Machine by Lee Siegel

To Siegel, the Internet is a font of convenience but also a perturbing wasteland of mindless babble, where the simple-minded wile away their days.

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28 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

Born Standing Up: A Comic’s Life by Steve Martin

Offers a fascinating glimpse of an odd brain doing its work, as well as an enjoyable sweep through America's pop culture past.

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27 Jan 2008 // 9:00 PM

Against the Day by Thomas Pynchon

There is sheer virtuosity and beauty in Pynchon's prose, its poetry and jazz rhythms, which he uses to build up a sense of artistic wonderment and then discharges with that little laconic snap of emotion at the end.

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27 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

Suspects by David Thomson

Reading Suspects made me want to go back and watch the movies it celebrates.

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24 Jan 2008 // 9:00 PM

Comic Art 9

Stack this book next to Eisner's Comics and Sequential Art and McCloud's Understanding Comics -- or rather, don't stack it at all, but keep it right next to your desk where you can find it at a moment's notice.

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24 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

Literary Russia by Anna Been and Rosamund Bartlett

Because this book is organized geographically, it can only be used if Russia is thought of as a literary geography.

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23 Jan 2008 // 9:00 PM

The Tokyo Look Book by Philomena Keet

An entertaining and informative book, but rather like leafing through a fashion magazine: visually stimulating, but intellectually unsatisfying.

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23 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

The Quiet Girl by Peter Hoeg

This densely plotted novel explores love, the meaning of family, and man's search for the divine.

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22 Jan 2008 // 9:00 PM

Physical Evidence: Selected Film Criticism by Kent Jones

What matters isn’t whether you or I agree with Jones, of course, but whether his writing offers new insights into the films and directors at hand.

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22 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

Salem Witch Judge by Eve LaPlante

Sewall was a devout and prosperous Puritan whose diligently kept and richly detailed diary gives us an unrivaled view of life in colonial New England in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.

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22 Jan 2008 // 8:58 PM

A Golden Age by Tahmima Anam

This is a welcome novel that tries to humanize the story of Bangladesh's birth, a country born not of one, but two, civil wars in the last 60 years.

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People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

Brooks’ use of this damaged child is unrealistic, ultimately, and adds nothing to the text, unless you needed a reminder that war is bad for children and other living things.

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The Education of Henry Adams: A Centennial Version by Edward Chalfant and Conrad Edick Wright

Between the Civil War and World War I, an old world began to die.

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Union 1812 by A.J. Langguth

Historian A.J. Langguth chronicles this exciting and uncertain period in a riveting account of the construction of American society.

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20 Jan 2008 // 8:59 PM

Nureyev: The Life by Julie Kavanagh

Nureyev defied the barrier that separated classical dance from modern and popular forms of the art, building bridges that are now familiar pathways.

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20 Jan 2008 // 8:58 PM

Gonzo: The Life of Hunter S. Thompson by Jann S. Wenner and Corey Seymour

Thompson had a talent for writing and self-destruction, both equally strong.

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Life, in Pictures by Will Eisner

This collection cleanly articulates the value of owning a book more for history’s sake than for enjoyment.

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