Sam Shepard’s Spring

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Sam Shepard is the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of more than 55 plays and three story collections and is an Academy Award–nominated actor who has appeared in more than 60 films, having also worked as a screenwriter and director. What’s left to do? Write a novel, of course, and he seems to have found the time. […]

Drabble, Nguyen, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Feb. 2017, Pt. 1

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Drabble, Margaret. The Dark Flood Rises. Farrar. Feb. 2017. 336p. ISBN 9780374134952. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780374715762. LITERARY FICTION A durable author of contemporary English-language literature named a Dame of the British Empire in 2008, Drabble has plenty of life experience to bring to her portrait of graying if relentlessly busy Francesca Stubbs. Even as she […]

Essential Literary Fiction | Fiction Previews, Jan. 2017, Pt. 3

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Appelfeld, Aharon. The Man Who Never Stopped Sleeping. Schocken. Jan. 2017. 272p. ISBN 9780805243192. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780805243208. LITERARY In this new work from celebrated Israeli author Appelfeld (winner of two National Jewish Book Awards), a young Holocaust survivor barely recalls his journey from Europe to Palestine, where he now works on a kibbutz. But […]

American Intervention, Siberian Exile, & More | History Previews, Jan. 2017, Pt. 3

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Baier, Bret. Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower’s Final Mission. Morrow. Jan. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9780062569035. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062569066. CD: HarperAudio. HISTORY Fox News Channel’s chief political anchor, a co-moderator for three of this year’s Republican presidential debates, and the host of Special Report with Bret Baier, the top cable news show in its […]

Eliot Ackerman, Han Kang, Mark Kurlansky, & More | Barbara’s Picks, Jan. 2017, Pt. 1

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Ackerman, Elliot. Dark at the Crossing. Knopf. Jan. 2017. 256p. ISBN 9781101947371. $25.95; ebk. ISBN 9781101947388. LITERARY A Silver Star, Bronze Star, and Purple Heart recipient who served five tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, Ackerman is among the soldier-writers who have returned home to give us a considered view of the fighting. He’s […]

Sugar, Fat, & Flavor | Nonfiction Previews, Dec. 2016, Pt. 2

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Lohman, Sarah. Eight Flavors: The Untold Story of American Cuisine. S. & S. Dec. 2016. 288p. ISBN 9781476753959. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781476753980. COOKING As a historical gastronomist, Lohman has worked her way through cookbooks, manuscripts, and various economic, scientific, political, and religious tracts dating from the 1700s to understand what’s cooking in America. And despite […]

Richard Fortey & Val McDermid | Barbara’s Picks, Dec. 2016, Pt. 2

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Fortey, Richard. The Wood for the Trees: One Man’s Long View of Nature. Knopf. Dec. 2016. 320p. ISBN 9781101875759. $28.95; ebk. ISBN 9781101875766. SCIENCE As evidenced by a stack of awards, including the 2002 Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing About Science, Fortey can make science sing, and his books always sell well. His new work […]

P.D. James, Javier Marias, the Gelbs on O’Neill, & Pulitzer Prize Winner Wood | Barbara’s Picks, Nov. 2016, Pt. 2

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Gelb, Arthur & Barbara Gelb. By Women Possessed: A Life of Eugene O’Neill. Marian Wood: Putnam. Nov. 2016. 896p. ISBN 9780399159114. $50; ebk. ISBN 9780698170681. LITERATURE The Gelbs are already the authors of O’Neill (1962) and O’Neill: Life with Monte Cristo (2000), so they were building on a solid base when they crafted this final […]

In Wartime | Nonfiction Previews, Oct. 2016, Pt. 2

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Cozzens, Peter. The Earth Is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West. Knopf. Oct. 2016. 576p. ISBN 9780307958044. $35; ebk. ISBN 9780307958051. HISTORY In the 16 books he has authored or edited, Cozzens has written about both the Civil War and the Indian Wars of the American West. Here he […]

Claire Harman’s Charlotte Brontë: A Fiery Heart; What To Read, Listen to, Watch Next | RA Crossroads

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In this column, the life of Charlotte Brontë and her creation Jane Eyre lead me down a winding path