Books

On Prose: For a Writer, What Isn’t in a Name?

Friday, December 19, 2014

Editor’s Note: This is the first “On Prose” column from Lyme novelist, essayist and story writer W.D. Wetherell. Intended as a companion to Sydney Lea’s “On Poetry” columns, “On Prose” will appear semi-regularly on the Valley News Books page.  Let’s start things off with a surprise quiz. What do the following all share in common? Tommy Traddles. Hannibal Chollop. Sissy Jupe. Peepy Jellyby. Sir Tumley Snuffin. Sim Tappertit. Ned …

Big Success for Author of ‘Wild’

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The big checks started coming in about nine months after Wild hit bookshelves and started its climb to the top of The New York Times best-seller’s list. To Oprah’s Book Club. And, as of this coming week, to movie theaters nationwide. The first thing author Cheryl Strayed bought was a $2,000 piano for …

Books to Buy for Fans of Felines

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Los Angeles — The felines are fighting back — on the bookshelf. Cats outnumber dogs in the U.S., but in bookstores, dog titles reign, the American Pet Products Association says. Fans insist felines are getting more popular as they ride the coattails of Internet sensations like Grumpy Cat, Lil Bub and Nora, the piano-playing cat. For the cat lovers on your holiday list, …

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 …

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 …