Category Archives: Books

Embarrassment of Riches

As I’ve said before, sometimes people ask me how I choose what I’m reading. The easiest answer is to mention my book groups, which choose about eighteen titles a year for me. (One group meets every month, and one every … Continue reading

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Imagining a Father

(Readers–I revised this post a little, not realizing that it would have to re-post and re-publish. Sorry you’re receiving this slightly changed version of this in your email.) Imagination is the beginning of creation. George Bernard Shaw As I continue … Continue reading

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Women in Stories

I was planning to write my Weekend Editions post (I’m late, I know) about the novellas pictured above, Small Things Like These and Foster, both by Claire Keegan. Then I saw the film Women Talking and also read the novel … Continue reading

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Cast Down in Hadestown

Should I care how Anäis Mitchell, creator of the musical Hadestown, adapts Greek myths to suit her purposes? I shouldn’t. Myths provide us with archetypal stories and characters, constantly shaped and reinterpreted over the centuries. For example, beautiful Helen, the … Continue reading

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Sumpsimus, Mumpsimus

Another book bites the dust. I check out Reading the OED: One Man, One Year, 21,730 Pages by Ammon Shea with high hopes. It seems to have everything. It is about words (I like words), and it is funny (I … Continue reading

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Only Connect

Governor Ron DeSantis’s website includes a page devoted to his proposed Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees (W.O.K.E.) Act. Florida’s tax dollars are paying for courses that make kids hate America, he says. Critical race theory has invaded … Continue reading

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A Casual Post

Gum-chewing drives some people to distraction, while split infinitives irritate others. One idiosyncratic bee in my own bonnet is the meaning of casualties. I’ve even taken a stand on the issue. Some years ago, I wrote a letter to National … Continue reading

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Art out of Trauma

A disadvantage of book groups is that sometimes you have to read books that you never would have picked up on your own and that you don’t enjoy. The upside is that sometimes you have to read books that you … Continue reading

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That Is Poetry

My husband is reading one of my favorite books, The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1831). He’s been tackling classics in recent years. I thought that was the reason for this choice, but just discovered he’s showing the 1939 Charles Laughton … Continue reading

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Question of the Day

Actually, two questions. Do you feel you have to finish a book once you start it, or are you okay with sometimes quitting on a book? If the latter, what are your criteria? How much of a chance do you … Continue reading

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