Reviews > Books
Mendocino and Other Stories by Ann Packer

Packer's importance couldn't be more evident as 2003 comes to a close with the ever-spreading Chick-Lit Disease threatening women's literature.

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Lost Christianities: The Battle for Scriptures and Faiths We Never Knew by Bart D. Ehrman

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.

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Fear Without Frontiers: Horror Cinema Across the Globe by Steven Jay Schneider

The very notion of foreignness, of frightening difference, is arguably what drives every horror movie.

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The Rat Pack: Neon Nights With the Kings of Cool by Lawrence J. Quirk and William Schoell

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.

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Rumsfeld: A Personal Portrait by Midge Dector

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.

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Quickies 3: Short Short Fiction on Gay Male Desire by James C. Johnstone

But in the short short story, with only 1,500 words or less available, each comma must count. The story must be an assassin.

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Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi

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.

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The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland by Jim DeFede

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.

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5 Nov 2003 // 1:00 AM

Yellow Dog by Martin Amis

Perhaps more than any living writer, Martin Amis suffers for being who he is.

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The New Imperialism by David Harvey

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.

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Lunch at the Picadilly by Clyde Edgerton

Clyde Edgerton, a combination of Mark Twain and Will Rogers, is the quintessential southern storyteller.

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Blood, Money & Power: How L.B.J. Killed J.F.K. by Barr McClellan

Painting a stark portrait of Johnson as a 'psychopath,' McClellan unravels a lurid tale of power, fear, and paranoia.

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The Tree of Life: A Book Depicting the Life of Charles Darwin by Peter Sís

Children need heroes. Science has many. Unfortunately, few of them have lived lives as adventuresome as Robin Hood.

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22 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

My Cold War by Tom Piazza

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.

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22 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

Lizard Dreaming of Birds by John Gist

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.

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22 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

Eagles and Angels by Juli Zeh

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.

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Stalking the Divine: Contemplating Faith with the Poor Clares by Kristin Ohlson

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.

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16 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

Leaving You: The Cultural History of Suicide by Lisa Lieberman

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.

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16 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

Charlie Big Potatoes by Phil Robinson

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.

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16 Oct 2003 // 1:00 AM

Bodies by Jed Mercurio

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.

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A Chat with José González at Newport Folk Festival

// Notes from the Road

"José González's sets during Newport Folk Festival weren't on his birthday (that is today) but each looked to be a special intimate performance.

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