Finding the work-home balance

Navigating Early

Simultaneously trying to read, for work, Clare Vanderpool’s forthcoming Navigating Early (about two troubled boys in boarding school), and trying to read, for fun, Denise Mina’s latest The End of the Wasp Season (about two troubled boys in boarding school) has me positively confuzzilated. So far, Mina’s boys are in much bigger trouble, but they […]

and Joan Allen still gets the best lines

Pam Landy

Having loved the original trilogy so much, I had some misgivings about seeing The Bourne Legacy, with Jeremy Renner picking up where Matt Damon left off. Not quite–one of the neatest things about this movie is that for its largest part it takes place at the same time as The Bourne Ultimatum, the last of […]

Wait, what book did you read?

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The other night, Pam and Richard and I were talking about Anna Karenina, which they had read and I am reading. Richard was making what seemed to me a very cogent point about the novel, that Anna seems less the focus than are the men surrounding her. Pam was partially agreeing, partially not; then as […]

Not so easy to be hard

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I’m enjoying PW’s discussion of “The Top Ten Most Difficult Books.” (I’ve read some of most of them but haven’t finished any.) Could we make such a list of children’s books? We’d have to wrestle with the problem that difficulty in a children’s book is grounds for many to not consider it a children’s book, […]

What’s on YOUR summer reading list?

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Lolly has designed a beautiful PDF of our annual summer reading list–please download and distribute as you will. I hasten to add that this is the good kind of s.r.l., one designed for pleasure reading, not to Improve you. I’m currently shuttling between (among?) Anna Karenina, William Langewiesche’s The Outlaw Sea, and Gillian Flynn’s Gone […]

Strange bedfellows: Suzanne Collins, Kristin Cashore, and who?

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Startlingly similar blurbs on the ARCs of these upcoming YA titles grabbed my attention. on Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (Bloomsbury, August 2012): “perfect for fans of George R.R. Martin and Suzanne Collins” on Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes (Penguin/Razorbill, December 2012): “ideal for fans of George R.R. Martin and Kristin Cashore” As […]

Tragedy of the traveling pants—no spoilers

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I recently started reading Ann Brashares’s Sisterhood Everlasting (Random House, 2011), a ten-years-later installment of the popular YA Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series (Sisterhood is shelved in the grown-up section at my library). The story picks up with the girls (women) pushing thirty, successful in life and love (for the most part) but wistful […]

The fun kind of summer reading

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We’ve posted our selections, compiled by Katie Bircher, for summer reading–the fun kind, not for school. You can see my at-home mostly-unread piles above: some are as yet untouched and saved for true leisure (The End of the Wasp Season, by Denise Mina, a Scottish crime writer I love) and some half-read and unlikely to […]

This was a debate?

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That New York Times “Room for Debate” on adults reading young adult books is an odd mess. Of the seven essayists, only two actually grapple with the posited question: “Why have young adult books become so popular so quickly — even with not-so-young adults?” Patricia McCormick preaches to the choir that YA books are more […]

Down on the farm

farm anatomy

As an urban twenty-something with a CSA farm share, a crush on Michael Pollan, and the occasional yearning to dangle tomato plants from my third-story apartment windows, I think a bit too much about where my food comes from. I often wonder how much of my insanity I will impart upon my future offspring. Will […]