Books

The masterstroke of Robert McCloskey's "Blueberries for Sal" is the sound he devised for the berries dropping into the pail.

A Quiet Mastery

Friday, July 31, 2015

They are all still happily picking, after all these years. Picking, snacking, and kuplunking their way up the rocky, spruce-dotted slopes of Blueberry Hill. Little Sal looks much the same as she did in 1948, appealingly androgynous, both in name and in appearance, dressed in overalls the straps of which keep sliding off her shoulders, her haircut the homemade kind …

Jimmy Carter Holds Ideals Close at 90

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Jimmy Carter let me down. Not with his book A Full Life: Reflections at 90 — a warm and detailed memoir of his youth followed by a clear-eyed assessment of the issues he tackled as president and afterward — but with his response to the question “Does the arc of history bend toward …

Scout’s Adult Conscience

Saturday, July 18, 2015

When I was 12, in the 1970s, I went on a trip to Alabama, my first trip to the Deep South. The occasion was a visit to a well-to-do family, connected distantly through marriage, that had made their fortune in the late 19th and early 20th centuries in timber and the railroads. Two …

‘Bibliography’ Reveals Secrets Of The ‘Harry Potter’ Books

Sunday, March 8, 2015

An exhaustive new J.K. Rowling bibliography being published in the UK reveals secrets behind the workings of her Harry Potter books, the Guardian reports. J.K. Rowling: A Bibliography 1997-2013 by Philip Errington includes correspondence between Rowling and her editor and details the revisions of the Potter works in …

Deep, Clear Memories: Writing Courses Spur Thetford Woman’s Memoir

Friday, February 27, 2015

While assembling the first volume of her memoirs in 2013, Thetford Center resident Virginia “Ginnie” Davenport ventured several times through the countryside of Middlesex, Vt., in search of remnants of the farm where she’d spent childhood summers with …

On Poetry: The Moral Force of Jean Connor’s Poems

Friday, February 27, 2015

It has been almost two years since I celebrated one of Vermont’s literary treasures, Jean Connor, a poet who, after a long career as a librarian in upstate New York, now lives at Wake Robin in Shelburne, Vt. Here I offer such celebration again, for no especial reason …

‘What Pet Should I Get?’ New Dr. Seuss Book Due Out in July

Friday, February 27, 2015

Another recently-discovered manuscript is coming to summer reading lists, this time in the form of a new Dr. Seuss book. The manuscript by the late author Theodor Geisel, a 1925 Dartmouth College graduate known to readers as Dr. Seuss, is coming out in July-the same month as the …

Romance Writers Get Some Love

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Washington — Who among us, even in the dyspeptic climate of Capitol Hill, does not yearn for the HEA? For the cool of heart and the calculating of temperament, the Happily Ever After is the delicious denouement expected …

Stewart Helped Books Prosper

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Tuesday night, when Jon Stewart announced that he would be stepping down from The Daily Show, millennials across the country were shocked and saddened. But book publicists were crushed. In an increasingly fractured market, The Daily Show has …

Book Notes: Thetford Author Brings a Fable Back Into Print

Friday, February 13, 2015

Once upon a time, before many of us were living so much in cyberspace, Thetford author Dean Whitlock wrote a fable imagining the origin of the kite for the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. And while he …

On Prose: A Short Story Can, and Should, Contain a Big Moment

Friday, February 13, 2015

My friend Hortense Calisher could never resist a good aphorism, particularly if she could add to it her own humorous spin. And so, when young writers asked for a useful definition of the short story, she would hesitate, smile mischievously, then bring it out: “A story is a …

Sequel to a Masterpiece

Friday, February 13, 2015

I first encountered Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird in ninth grade. Like so many others, I was struck not just by the book’s vivid narrative of racial justice, but also by its nuance: The inner life of …

An Open Book

Saturday, February 7, 2015

At 96, Emma Mosher has had enough stuff thrown at her by life to fill a novel, maybe two novels. Mosher was married at 18, had six children, saw the marriage fail, raised the kids by herself for …