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David Thomson The New Biographical Dictionary of Film

He’s still big. It’s the pictures that got small.


Books
Like a perennial political candidate—the Ralph Nader of movie reviewing—David Thomson becomes the most resented man in film criticism every four years, or however often he publishes an upd ...   More
 
Wednesday, December 22, 2010 AARON MESH

Edmund Morris Colonel Roosevelt

Roosevelt’s best biographer reveals a mountain lion in winter.


Books
His slogan was “Speak softly and carry a big stick,” but Theodore Roosevelt is now remembered mostly for the stick and almost not at all for any softness of speech. And yet it is in his qu ...   More
 
Wednesday, December 8, 2010 Matthew Buckingham

Phil Stanford The Peyton-Allan Files

A five-decade-old murder mystery still haunts a local journo.


Books
Fifty years ago this week, two 19-year-old lovers were brutally murdered in Portland on a Saturday night while parked off Northwest 53rd Drive in Forest Park. Portland State University student Larry P ...   More
 
Wednesday, November 24, 2010 JAMES PITKIN

Harriet Fasenfest A Householder’s Guide To The Universe


Books
The new book by Harriet Fasenfest, A Householder’s Guide to the Universe (Tin House, 400 pages, $16.95), is like a thick slice of rhubarb pie. Tart, saucy, colorful, perhaps an acquired taste, b ...   More
 
Wednesday, November 17, 2010 Sarah E. Smith

Greg Graffin Anarchy Evolution

We’re here, it’s weird, get used to it.


Books
On Bad Religion’s seminal 1988 album Suffer, thesaurus-wielding frontman Greg Graffin offered this decidedly straightforward declaration of empiricist independence: “Hey, I don’t kno ...   More
 
Wednesday, November 10, 2010 CHRIS STAMM

Jill Lepore The Whites Of Their Eyes

If you can’t laugh at your past, what can you laugh at?


Books
Jill Lepore made her bones at The New Yorker writing on two subjects she cares passionately about: American history and breast-feeding. I am perhaps unqualified to comment on the latter, but the Harva ...   More
 
Wednesday, October 20, 2010 Matthew Buckingham

Larry Colton No Ordinary Joes

A Goat Brother restores humanity to the Greatest Generation.


Books
It’s been 10 years since Larry Colton reinvigorated the nonfiction sports genre with Counting Coup, the offbeat chronicle of a Crow Indian girl’s against-all-odds quest to lead her high-sc ...   More
 
Wednesday, October 6, 2010 Matthew Buckingham

Tao Lin Richard Yates

The NYC lit instigator on dollars and cents.


Books
Mention Tao Lin’s name in a crowd full of concerned readers and struggling writers and watch the room explode. Your dad probably hasn’t heard of him, but where Lin is known and read (or po ...   More
 
Wednesday, September 22, 2010 CHRIS STAMM

Jonathan Franzen Freedom

The family vs. freedom.


Books
Patty and Walter Berglund are staying frosty. Over the years, their love has advanced by the glacially slow accumulation of kindnesses and tolerance. They are helpful neighbors, listeners of NPR, tast ...   More
 
Wednesday, September 15, 2010 HANNA NEUSCHWANDER

William Gibson Zero History

Branding us to death.


Books
For all the accolades he’s received as a visionary sci-fi author who coined the word “cyberspace” and first romanticized computer hacking, the Canadian author William Gibson is no lo ...   More
 
Wednesday, September 8, 2010 BEN WATERHOUSE
 

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