| Dec 9, 2011
| 10:08 AM
When architect and design firm owner Steve Kadlec was asked recently whether bookshelves were becoming obsolete in the iPad age, he wisecracked: "Who reads books? We buy them for pretty!"
He was only half-joking. With digital competition, hardcover books...
| Oct 28, 2011
| 3:51 PM
Every writer has two lives: The life that contains elements common to all lives — birth and death and everything in between — and a second life. The second life is another thing entirely. It consists of the world's reaction to the writer's...
| Oct 28, 2011
| 5:39 PM
He was an abandoned child who grew up with the unshakable belief that he was destined to be a prince. How arrogant and sensible of him.
His personal hygiene was bad. He often wore no shoes and liked to stick his feet in the toilet. His food faddery was...
| Nov 22, 2011
| 12:45 PM
When ABC Sports guru Roone Arledge was suggesting Howard Cosell for "Monday Night Football," NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle replied: "Cosell? Why don't you just dig up Attila the Hun?"
Such was the reaction generated by modern broadcasting's first...
| Aug 23, 2012
| 1:57 PM
David Maraniss, a longtime journalist with The Washington Post, wrote “First In His Class,” a seminal biography of former President Bill Clinton, after winning the 1993 Pulitzer Prize in national reporting for his newspaper stories on Clinton....
| Jul 12, 2012
| 3:26 PM
Walter Cronkite was not inclined to introspection, and historian Douglas Brinkley emulates his subject in this thorough biography of the news broadcaster who in 1972 was declared "The Most Trusted Man in America."
Brinkley's lengthy narrative spends as...
| Nov 3, 2010
| 3:19 PM
"Joe Louis: Hard Times Man"
By Randy Roberts
Yale University Press, 308 pages, $27.50
Joe Louis was a titan, the undisputed heavyweight champion for more than twelve years (and a record 23 title defenses) and, probably, the greatest American hero of...
| Oct 22, 2010
| 2:36 PM
"Grant Wood: A Life"
By R. Tripp Evans
Knopf, $37.50, 432 pages
Controversy attended Grant Wood's iconic and enigmatic painting "American Gothic" from its first public viewing, a juried exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1930. The depiction...
| Nov 18, 2011
| 3:30 PM
It's dangerous to begin a biography with what amounts to an advertisement for oneself. "Someone else could cobble together a so-so version of your life just by mining what's stored in library boxes and electronic files," Charles J. Shields writes in the...
| Jan 17, 2011
| 9:41 AM
"The Story of Martin Luther King Jr." (2002)
By Johnny Ray Moore, illustrated by Amy Wummer
Ideals, 21 pages, $6.95
The life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. in easy-to-understand language for small children.
"Martin's Big Words: The...
| Dec 2, 2011
| 9:54 AM
Vincent Van Gogh is an extraordinary artist about whom everything seems to be known. His brilliant work and tragic life, combined with a paper trail of letters to his art-dealer brother, Theo, have made him an irresistible subject for art historians,...
| Oct 14, 2010
| 9:19 AM
"Lives Like Loaded Guns: Emily Dickinson and Her Family's Feuds"
By Lyndall Gordon Viking, 472 pages, $28
Even though fewer than a dozen of Emily Dickinson’s 1,789 poems were published in her lifetime, her family and friends in Amherst,...