10 Dec

Back to the Bronx

Fern Jaffe, owner of Paperbacks Plus, with author Robert Caro

When Paperbacks Plus in the Bronx, New Yo

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09 Dec

Telling the Story of A Love Supreme

This seems the perfect time of year for a book about the late jazz tenor saxophonist John Coltrane's A Love Supreme, the enduringly popular LP recording first issued in 1965. Coltrane's album, created by the musician-composer as "a gift to the Divine," invokes a universal love and spiritual consciousness close to the heart of a season sacred to several faiths.

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05 Dec

A Young Reader Stands Up for the First Amendment

By Molly Widmer

A few weeks ago at my school, I went to the library to check out a book by my favorite author. But as soon as I arrived, I stopped dead in my tracks. There, locked in the glass cases, were the fantasy books I was planning to read!

I ran straight to the school librarian, terribly mad, demanding to know how it happened. He told me that someone had sent a complaint to the school about fantasy books, so they were all locked up and would be taken away.

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03 Dec

Bernard Cornwell Brings History to Life

The author speaks to BTW about writing, green cards, and the Holy Grail

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25 Nov

Joint Memoir Tells a Compelling Story of Friendship

If you're of a certain age, you've probably heard the riddle "What's black and white and read all over?" (Answer: a newspaper.)

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20 Nov

The Tale of Terrible, Terrible Hooch -- Craze: Gin and Debauchery in the Age of Reason

Despite last tasting gin at the age of five -- when she immediately threw it up after drinking from an unattended gin and tonic at her parents' cocktail party -- Jessica Warner long knew there was a good book to be written about the craze for drinking gin in 18th century England.

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13 Nov

Lives Lived by the Book

By Joann Jacobsen-Wells

As a boy, Tony Weller assumed the staff of his father's downtown Salt Lake City bookstore -- an eclectic bunch of bibliophiles who were the denizens of the book-shelved forests he explored -- were just normal folk. You know -- well read. Articulate. Each an expert in some literary endeavor, each an evangelist for the glory of the written word. "It was not until I was in college that I recognized what a peculiar bunch of lovable weirdos and oddballs had been around me my entire life," Weller said.

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05 Nov

Rohinton Mistry Cancels U.S. Book Tour Due to Racial Profiling

This past weekend, Rohinton Mistry, one of Canada's most celebrated authors, announced that he was canceling the remainder of his U.S. book tour due to what he characterized as racial profiling in American airports. "He was singled out at airports because of the color of his skin," said Paul Bogaards, director of publicity for Knopf, Mistry's publisher. "This is the way of the world now, and, after a time, Rohinton Mistry became uncomfortable."

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29 Oct

New Walker Title Takes the Measure of America

Andro Linklater, English author of Measuring America: How the Greatest Land Sale in History Shaped the United States (Walker), a November/December Book Sense 76 pick, is continuing a long and worthy tradition, going back at least as far as de Toucqueville, of Europeans showing their American cousins the truth and relevance of what's under their very noses.

Or, in this case, beneath our feet.

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29 Oct

Celebrating the Complexities and Joys of Family Life in A Parchment of Leaves

Silas House grew up in a family of storytellers. The most gifted among them was Dave Sizemore, his great-uncle. Sizemore died in 1997, and with his death, House suddenly realized that a rich and wonderful history had gone with him.

That's when House, who had had writing aspirations since childhood, finally decided to seriously pursue his own brand of storytelling.

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22 Oct

Meeting Your Neighbors One Siren at a Time

An Interview with Michael Perry, Author of Book Sense Pick Population: 485

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16 Oct

Chapters in Bookselling: New England Bookseller Stays the Course

When bookseller Sarah Nixon talks, the words come quickly, and the voice is upbeat and confident. It's easy to imagine that parents and young readers find such a buoyant tone reassuring as they browse the children's section of the Wellesley Booksmith in Wellesley, Massachusetts. In a recent telephone conversation, a questioner found himself racing to keep pace with Nixon as he scribbled notes.

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16 Oct

A Letter From Booktown

By Rita Brutsch

I am in London on vacation, and, after a few days of sightseeing, I can't think of anything better to do than run up and down Charing Cross Road and check out all the bookstores. At first, I'm not really looking for anything in particular, but, then, it occurs to me that this would be the perfect place to look for an out-of-print copy of a book I've always wanted to read, Cape Horn: The Logical Route by the legendary French sailor Bernard Moitessier.

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