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The "main" cover to "Star Wars" #1, which has many, many variant covers. (Photo courtesy Marvel Entertainment Inc./TNS)

When Comics and Galaxies Collide

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Star Wars is coming home. Not at the movies, but in the comics. On Jan. 14, Marvel released Star Wars No. 1 , a new series set right after the first movie, the one released in 1977 (which is now, chronologically, the fourth — and retitled Star Wars IV: A New Hope ). So the book will feature Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, R2-D2 and the ragtag rebel fleet fresh off the destruction of the Death Star (the first one). Long-time comics fans may have a sense of deja vu, because this has happened before. In 1977, Marvel Comics had only one licensed property in its …

Piermont Photographs Are a Love Letter to a Time and Place

Saturday, January 17, 2015

In 2012, M.L. Gitchel, known to her friends as Mel, decided she wanted to do something to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the founding of Piermont town, which was then two years away. Some people might bake a cake or wave a flag at a parade, and leave it at that. But Gitchel …

If There’s Sound Reason, It’s OK to Rhyme, but Don’t Push It

Friday, January 16, 2015

I have by now visited just shy of 100 Vermont community libraries to talk about my chosen art, this in accord with the aim I announced on being installed in 2011 as the state’s poet laureate. If, in that span, there is one issue I have encountered more than any, it is the matter of rhyme in poetry. A grumpy gent in Arlington, …

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 …

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, …