Books

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 …

Children’s Book Examines Atheism

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Washington — Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten is known for exploring morality in both somber and extremely silly ways, including an in-depth article on parents who mistakenly leave their children to die in hot cars and …

Humor in Pain, Pain in Humor: Author James McBride Finds the Funny in Slavery, Poverty, Abuse

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Good Lord Bird, James McBride’s 2013 novel about a young boy in abolitionist John Brown’s ragtag army, is probably the funniest book about slavery you will ever read. His 1996 memoir, The Color of Water, about his …

Warhol Bodyguard Sued Over ‘Liz’

Saturday, October 25, 2014

New York — Andy Warhol’s foundation sued the iconic pop artist’s former bodyguard, accusing him of stealing Liz, a 1964 painting of actress Elizabeth Taylor, and hiding it for more than 30 years. The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, established by the artist’s will to hold …

On Poetry: Children, Schools, Football and What We Value

Friday, October 24, 2014

This fall, our news, and not merely in the sports outlets, was filled with Baltimore Ravens football player Ray Rice’s brutal assault on his wife in an Atlantic City elevator. Rice was at first slapped on the wrist by league commissioner Roger Goodell: a two-day suspension. Goodell increased …

‘Book of Life’ Finds the Whimsy in Death

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Animation fans may face a tough choice at the multiplex this weekend. On some screens, you’ll find the whimsical, old-school animation of the stop-action feature The Boxtrolls. Set in a subterranean world, that movie tells the story of …

How an Affair Poisoned Politics

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Like many aspirants to the presidency, former Sen. Gary Hart saw himself in epic terms — as a “transformational figure” in American politics, Matt Bai reports in his book recounting the collapse of Hart’s 1988 bid for the …

The Finest Children’s Book About Politics

Saturday, October 11, 2014

At a time when so much media is just a search and click away, movies, music and books that have not made the transition to digital can feel infuriatingly elusive — especially if they are hard to track …

A Story of Might and Right

Saturday, October 11, 2014

I n 1997, Jean Merrill, author of the classic children’s book The Pushcart War , which told the fictional tale of a battle between New York City street vendors and big trucks, received a letter from Ela Bhatt, …

Novelist Bids a Cherished Character Farewell

Friday, October 10, 2014

On a warm fall morning three weeks into the new academic year at Dartmouth, veteran creative-writing professor Ernest Hebert searches the bookshelves of his office at Sanborn Hall for a copy of his first novel. There: About collarbone-high …

New ‘Star Wars’ History Includes Fans, Franchise, Future

Sunday, October 5, 2014

How Star Wars Conquered The Universe by Chris Taylor is an immensely readable look at the worldwide impact of the Star Wars saga over the decades. He calls it “a biography of Star Wars.” The book covers more …