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This undated image released by Simon & Schuster shows Richard Zoglin, author of  the Bob Hope biography "Hope: Entertainer of the Century." (AP Photo/Simon & Schuster)

Bob Hope’s Legacy More Than Laughs

Sunday, November 23, 2014

New York — While today he may be thought of with misgivings, if at all, Bob Hope reigned for much of the last century as America’s wisecracking avatar of comedy. By the time he died in 2003 at age 100, Hope had conquered vaudeville, Broadway, recordings, live concerts, radio, films and, from its infancy, TV, where he remained a welcome presence into his 90s. “By nearly any measure, he was the most popular entertainer of the twentieth century,” writes Richard Zoglin. That alone should bear out Hope’s career-long theme song, Thanks for the Memory. Yet memories of Hope have already dimmed, and his achievements, still …

Story Brings Apocalypse to Upper Valley

Friday, November 21, 2014

When I was in high school, one of my English teachers had us read William Faulkner’s Nobel Prize acceptance speech. Delivered in December 1950, it remains the most soaring statement about the power of literature, and a sharp rebuke to writers who allow their work to be warped by the near-universal fear of …

Dartmouth Graduate’s Iraq War Novel Wins National Book Award

Friday, November 21, 2014

At the 2014 National Book Awards ceremony on Wednesday evening, author Ursula K. Le Guin stole the show. The next morning, speaking by phone from a Manhattan hotel, Le Guin was feisty, smart and pointed, speaking about the responsibilities of writers and publishers in the current era. “I don’t want to pit writers …

Outdoor Writer’s Book Explores Some of New England’s Best Hikes

Friday, November 21, 2014

Climb Mount Washington in the dead of winter? Barely more than a morning constitutional for Marty Basch. Pedal a gear-laden bicycle from Maine to Alaska, along the Arctic Circle through Scandinavia, or along the Continental Divide from Canada …

Book Notes: A New Life in Verse; Poet Finds Rejuvenation in Latest Works

Friday, November 21, 2014

L aura Davies Foley was 45 when she wrote her first poem. It was 2003, and following the death of her husband she’d moved with their three children to a new home in Cornish on the Connecticut River. …

Raising a Down Syndrome Daughter

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Raleigh, n.c. — Paul Austin’s daughter, Sarah, is thoughtful and helpful, though she goes about it her own way. He recalled an awful day, years ago, when he went for an angry walk after getting in a fight …

Army Colonel Did It Her Way

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Chicago — “Comedian” and “Colonel” aren’t typically words one would use in the same sentence. But when it comes to describing Jill Morgenthaler, no other two will do. “I always wear lipstick, because I look like a boy …

Vampire Lestat Lives Again

Sunday, November 9, 2014

When Anne Rice published Interview With the Vampire in 1976, she didn’t just launch her own vampire series — her sexy tragic vampire antiheroes launched an entirely new genre. The phrase paranormal romance “didn’t exist when I wrote …

The Military Failure of Paul Revere

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Ashland, Mass. — Chronicling Paul Revere’s life, author and attorney Michael M. Greenburg reveals the little-known vices and virtues of the American Revolution’s most elusive patriot in a fascinating new biography. After finishing The Court-Martial of Paul Revere, …

Strafford Resident Traces Environmentalism To Civil Rights In New Memoir

Friday, November 7, 2014

Gus Speth and his wife, Cameron, have found home in Vermont. They’ve settled in a state that reminds them of what was good about the South of their youth, a place that de-emphasizes m aterial goods, values individuality, …

On Poetry: Frost’s Early Letters Overturn an Unfavorable Biography

Friday, November 7, 2014

I recently composed an essay on the early letters of Robert Frost for the excellent Georgia Review. In the process, any number of things occurred to me, including — and I have thought on this for some time …

Magazine Editor Unearths Lost Steinbeck Story From WWII

Friday, November 7, 2014

New York — In July 1944, Orson Welles wrapped up one of his wartime radio broadcasts with a brief, emotional reading of a story by one of the country’s favorite authors, John Steinbeck. The piece was titled With …

Norman Lear Doesn’t ‘Stifle’ in New Book

Sunday, November 2, 2014

New York — From the moment Norman Lear began writing his memoir, he knew what the first line would be: “When I was a boy I thought that if I could turn a screw in my father’s head …