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Too Enjoyable to Be Literature What a wonderful short piece! It’s only four paragraphs long (one of which is a block quotation), but it so aptly expresses a reader’s joy of recognizing and appreciating a literary work.  That literary work is Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald. And Helen Garner has the same […]

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book review

“Finding Me” by Viola Davis

The book is not so much a triumphant tale of overcoming adversity as a howl of fury at the injustice of it all. —the Guardian In this candid memoir Viola Davis details her journey from desperate childhood poverty in Central Falls, Rhode Island, to becoming one of the finest actors working today. “I learned from

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queer indie and self-published books to read during pride month The indie and self-published community offers a great range of identities and diversification that you often can’t find in traditionally published books, but because of people’s prejudice against these books, or because of their laziness in trying to find them, indie books often go unnoticed.

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Book covers: Friendaholic by Elizabeth Day; On Friendship by Alexander Nehamas; The Friend Who Got Away, edited by Jenny Offill and Elissa Schappel; The Girls from Ames by Jeffrey Zaslow; Truth & Beauty by Ann Patchett; Old Friend from Far Away by Natalie Goldberg; The Persian Pickle Club by Sandra Dallas

6 Degrees: Many Forms of Friendship

This month we start with Elizabeth Day’s exploration of friendship, Friendaholic. Here’s part of the Goodreads description of the book: “ As a society, there is a tendency to elevate romantic love. But what about friendships? Aren’t they just as – if not more – important? So why is it hard to find the right

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6 Mid-Life Memoirs of Transformative Years “6 Life-Changing Memoirs” “What would it take for you to transform your life? Could you do it in the span of a year or two? Spurred on by loss, career changes, new hobbies — or even a global pandemic — what if your life could become something new? In

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Learning How to Read Slowly Laura Sackton, a self-proclaimed fast reader, explains her reasons for learning “about how to shift some of my bookish energy toward slower, more deliberate reading” because, she writes, “there are some books that are better when read slowly.” I couldn’t agree more. And I was especially intrigued by her realization

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Magda Szabó and the Cost of Censorship “The Hungarian writer’s fiction examines how silence—politically enforced or self-imposed—can warp and disfigure a life.” Charlie Lee profiles Magda Szabó, whose life under Hungary’s repressive political regime “was an experience that seeded her fascination with the cost of silence in all its forms—politically enforced, self-imposed—as well as her

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Two sides to a story: why feminist retellings are filling our bookshelves “From Nineteen Eighty-Four’s Julia to Shakespeare’s Rosaline, the trend for a new perspective on a familiar tale is continuing apace. Authors and publishers explain what old stories tell us about today” Writers talk about an important topic. Giving a voice to people who

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Historic photo: black and white image of a crowd of women suffragettes dressed in white marching on a city street lined by men in dark suits.

5 Memoirs to Read for International Women’s Day

(Feature Image: From the [U.S.] National Archives catalog; National Archives Identifier: 593556) Related Post: Here are memoirs by five strong women with whom to celebrate. The Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd Sue Monk Kidd was an established Christian inspirational writer when an incident involving her teenage daughter called her to question

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What Do 10 Years of the New York Times Young Adult Bestseller Lists Say about YA? Because I don’t read a lot of YA literature, I tend not to report on it very often. Here Kelly Jensen, who has been writing about the YA book world for more than 15 years, examines whether the demographics

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