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  • The Biblioracle: Books about failure the best teacher

    The Biblioracle: Books about failure the best teacher

    We need more books about failure. I tell my college students that failure is a most important teacher. They tend to agree, but they are also of a generation that has been trained to fear failure, where even small failures may be unduly punished. Maybe if more people would write about their failures...

  • Olga Grushin's 'Forty Rooms' pits positive thinking against hard truth

    Olga Grushin's 'Forty Rooms' pits positive thinking against hard truth

    Is talent a seedling that grows or dies depending on how it's fed? Or is it immutable: soldered into our DNA, and delivered to us whole, before our first cry? Such questions drive the new book "Forty Rooms," by Moscow-born novelist and 2007 Young Lions Fiction Award winner Olga Grushin. This book...

  • Third set of Lesbian Poet Trading Cards due out in March

    Third set of Lesbian Poet Trading Cards due out in March

    I'm as intrigued as anyone by glimpses of impending cultural developments — "See what's coming to Netflix," for example, always gets me — but the March 2016 release I'm most looking forward to is the third installment of Headmistress Press' limited-edition Lesbian Poet Trading Cards. This set of...

  • Crime fiction roundup: 'The Widow,' more

    Crime fiction roundup: 'The Widow,' more

    The Widow by Fiona Barton, New American Library, 324 pages, $26 Riding the streak of humdinger, unreliably narrated mysteries started by "Gone Girl" and "The Girl on the Train," Fiona Barton's debut, "The Widow," has you right where it wants you from the start. In 2006, in the southern British...

  • E-reader: Spouses in prison, pickup artists and more

    E-reader: Spouses in prison, pickup artists and more

    Marrying a Monster by Jessica Pishko, Narratively, 14-minute read, free If you want to guarantee you know where your spouse is at all times, a sure-fire method might be the one employed by Lyal Northey, a 62-year-old California businesswoman who in 1976 married Joe Morse, 32, a resident of San...

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