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Andrew Beahrs Twain’s Feast

Terrapin soup with a side of Americana.

For most of America’s early history, when all food was local, the best of our emergent cuisine came from the wild. But almost as soon as some of our foundational foods were born from the rich st ...   More
Wednesday, July 14, 2010 HANNA NEUSCHWANDER

Aimee Bender The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake

Eat it and weep.

Aimee Bender’s new novel, The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake (Doubleday, 304 pages, $25.95), is based on a neat little conceit: that little Rose Edelstein, aged almost 9 years, can taste the h ...   More
Wednesday, July 7, 2010 MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Walt Curtis

A poet/painter rises from the ashes.

The May 2 fire that burned down Great Northwest Bookstore, where Walt Curtis lived in the basement, destroyed the Portland poet and painter’s possessions and archives but reminded the community ...   More
Wednesday, June 30, 2010 RICHARD SPEER

Bret Easton Ellis Imperial Bedrooms

Rich, bored and old—the horror.

Having completed his vivisection of ’80s apathy and excess with the peerless American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis took his gleaming scalpel to literary genres, transforming conspiracy-thriller pul ...   More
Wednesday, June 23, 2010 CHRIS STAMM

Dana Haynes Crashers

The next terrorist mastermind will be Dilbert.

When the next 9/11-style terrorist attack strikes the U.S., the plot may include bringing down commercial airliners, but it won’t be led by Osama bin Laden. Instead, the attack will be mastermin ...   More
Wednesday, June 23, 2010 MATT BUCKINGHAM

Alexander Zaitchik Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance

Pundit pile-on!

Topic sentence: Glenn Beck is a boorish, weepy, fear-mongering, conspiracy-touting demagogue who will demonize any progressive person or group for ratings. If you’re a reader of this newspaper, ...   More
Wednesday, June 16, 2010 HENRY STERN

Peter Donahue Clara And Merritt

Love among the longshoremen.

Decades before Seattle became known for Microsoft and Starbucks, the city was a muscular place where working men labored hard. Peter Donahue’s Clara and Merritt (Wordcraft, 285 pages, $14) captu ...   More
Wednesday, June 9, 2010 HENRY STERN

Steve Wilson The Boys From Little Mexico

An American tale.

There is perhaps nothing more viscerally American than blue-collar sport: small-town pride writ large, desire, hope, brief denials of reality and death. This is of course the defining theme of TV&rsqu ...   More
Wednesday, June 2, 2010 MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Alain Mabanckou Broken Glass

Barflies in the Congo.

Biting humor permeates Alain Mabanckou’s slim character sketch of a Congolese watering hole in his new novel, Broken Glass (Soft Skull Press, 176 pages, $13.95). The L.A.-based African writer un ...   More
Wednesday, May 26, 2010 Roxanne Macmanus

Shane Jones Light Boxes

The war with winter.

New Yorker Shane Jones’ debut novel, Light Boxes(Penguin, 160 pages, $14),is a fable about the inevitability of sadness. It chronicles a town where misery takes the form of the perpetual gloom o ...   More
Wednesday, May 26, 2010 Roxanne Macmanus

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