Five Essential Poetry Titles | Poetry Previews, Apr. 2018

Dennis, Carl. Night School. Penguin. Apr. 2018. 112p. ISBN 9780143132356. pap. $20; ebk. ISBN 9780525504337. POETRY The author of plainspoken verse that presents everyday life, then looks beneath the surface to see what’s grinding away beneath, Dennis returns with a substantive 13th collection (after Another Reason) exploring how we grapple with the world through imagination. […]

Albright, King, Moore, Pardlo, & Snyder | Barbara’s Nonfiction Picks, Apr. 2018

Albright, Madeleine. Fascism: A Warning. Harper. Apr. 2018. 288p. ISBN 9780062802187. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062802231. lrg. prnt. POLITICAL SCIENCE Having grown up in Czechoslovakia under the Nazi and Communist regimes, former Secretary of State Albright can give context to her discussion of the rise of reactionary tendencies in the world today, from Russia’s Vladimir Putin, […]

Award-Worthy Authors from Ausubel to Tolstaya | Fiction Previews, Mar. 2018

Ausubel, Ramona. Awayland: Stories. Riverhead. Mar. 2018. 240p. ISBN 9781594634901. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780698410862. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. SHORT STORIES Winner of the PEN Center USA Fiction Award and a NYPL Young Lions Fiction Award finalist for her debut novel, No One Is Here Except All of Us, Ausubel continues her elegant, risk-taking way with this […]

Painters, Photographers, Rappers, and Andrew Lloyd Webber | Arts Previews, Mar. 2018

Bonanos, Christopher. Flash: The Making of Weegee the Famous. Holt. Mar. 2018. 366p. ISBN 9781627793063. $30; ebk. ISBN 9781627793070. BIOGRAPHY/PHOTOGRAPHY Famed for his gritty, sometimes lurid shots, particularly of mid-century New York, Arthur Fellig was nicknamed Weegee (from the Ouija board) for his spooky ability to arrive at the scene of a crime almost before […]

LJ Talks to Daniel Mendelsohn

Author and critic Daniel Mendelsohn’s literary memoir An Odyssey: A Father, A Son, and an Epic tells at least two stories. At 81, Mendelsohn’s father, a retired research scientist, decided to sit in on his literature professor son’s Odyssey seminar at Bard College. After that, the father-son duo retraced Odysseus’s route on a Mediterranean sea cruise.

Banville, Mamet, Zadie Smith, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Feb. 2018

Banville, John. Time Pieces: A Dublin Memoir. Knopf. Feb. 2018. 224p. ISBN 9781524732837. $25.95; ebk. ISBN 9781524732844. Downloadable: Random Audio. MEMOIR/TRAVEL Not just a memoir, this new work by Man Booker Prize winner Banville recounts his relationship with Dublin, a significant force in his life if not in his fiction until the Quirke mystery series […]

Winter with Knausgaard & Ali Smith, Cornwell Revisits Shakespeare, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Jan. 2018

Benjamin, Melanie. The Girls in the Picture. Delacorte. Jan. 2018. 448p. ISBN 9781101886809. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781101886816. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. LITERARY/HISTORICAL FICTION Mary Pickford was full of the firsts: the first to have her name above the marquee, to win Academy Award for Best Actress in a Talkie, and to place her hand- and footprints […]

Music, Art, & Literature | Nonfiction Previews, Nov. 2017

A-Trak. When the Needle Dropped: A DJ’s Journey. Scribner. Nov. 2017. 288p. ISBN 9781476745497. $25; ebk. ISBN 9781476745510. MEMOIR/MUSIC His full name is Alain Macklovitch, but he’s known worldwide as A-Trak, and through his memoir he traks, er, tracks a huge trend in music: the emergence of the DJ as the star of the show […]

Gates, Hallberg, Hoffman, Yuknavitch, & More | Last of the Sept./Oct. 2017 Picks

Davis, Lanny J. The Unmaking of the President 2016: The Case Against FBI Director James Comey and How He Cost Hillary Clinton the Presidency. Scribner. Oct. 2017. 224p. ISBN 9781501177729. $24; ebk. ISBN 9781501180408. POLITICAL SCIENCE Yale-trained lawyer Davis, who served in the administrations of both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, offers state-by-state analysis […]

Mendelsohn’s Odyssey, Ward/Burns on Vietnam, & More | Barbara’s Nonfiction Picks, Sept. 2017

Blum, Ben. Ranger Games: A Story of Soldiers, Family and an Inexplicable Crime. Doubleday. Sept. 2017. 432p. ISBN 9780385538435. $28.95; ebk. ISBN 9780385538442. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. MEMOIR Why would an upright young man, determined to become a U.S. Army Ranger, join with two fellow soldiers and two strangers the day before his deployment to Iraq […]