Wednesday, November 19 2003
If there is disagreement, even animosity, between branches of Christianity today, it pales in comparison with the ideological battles waged in the first four or five centuries after Christ's birth.
The very notion of foreignness, of frightening difference, is arguably what drives every horror movie.
Tuesday, November 11 2003
These guys were the first to embody the definition of "cool," and no entertainer since has managed to successfully emulate or capture their powerful allure.
Dector has said that Rumsfeld is her attempt to speak directly to the American people over the heads of the media. But she's only interested in telling them what she and her fellow neocons want them to hear.
But in the short short story, with only 1,500 words or less available, each comma must count. The story must be an assassin.
Based on her own personal experience of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Marjane Satrapi introduces us to the effects of cultural change through the eyes of a child.
In the immediate aftermath of the attacks at the World Trade Center, 38 jetliners en route to the United States were re-directed to Gander. What occurred over the succeeding four days was an outpouring of what could be termed hospitality, although that word is barely adequate.
Wednesday, November 5 2003
Perhaps more than any living writer, Martin Amis suffers for being who he is.
The United States, David Harvey notes, has long sought to control the flow of oil from the Middle East as a way to maintain political and economic superiority.
Clyde Edgerton, a combination of Mark Twain and Will Rogers, is the quintessential southern storyteller.
Painting a stark portrait of Johnson as a 'psychopath,' McClellan unravels a lurid tale of power, fear, and paranoia.
Wednesday, October 22 2003
Children need heroes. Science has many. Unfortunately, few of them have lived lives as adventuresome as Robin Hood.
As a phenomenologist, Delano recounts his childhood and family life in the same way he explores public history: by plundering the surfaces and small events for meaning.
John Gist's second novel isn't concerned with forensics and sleuthing; it simply surveys the ever-increasing carnage that Gist implies is symptomatic of our world gone wrong.
The real states here, though, are states of mind, and in particular those freaked-out mental states that characterise the tradition of drug-trade books and films from Burroughs to Welsh.
Thursday, October 16 2003
Imagine a small group of cloistered nuns, right in the middle of Cleveland, who pray for the City, all day, all night. This is their calling. In 2003. Gives you chills, doesn't it? The Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, cloistered in a monastery, they're praying for you.
The work is also a reminder of how the taking of one's own life can be representative of more than just depression, that rather, it can become, for better or worse, a deliberate act of independence.
The novel appears to fear we might miss the message: You don't need chemicals to have a good time. In that way, despite Robinson's deftness of touch and sharpness of wit, the novel sometimes resembles M.A.D.D. filmstrip day or a Very Special edition of Maxim.
Mercurio's main objective is to blow a big, fat hole in the E.R.-inspired non-reality that hospitals are dens of comfort and that all doctors are hunky heroes.
Thursday, October 9 2003
While providing tremendous insight into the history of science and the study of the world at large, Bryson's most interesting observations lie in his fascinating description of said scientists and their peculiarities and obsessions.