| Sep 16, 2012
Penguin: 416 pp., $26.95
Zadie Smith's fourth novel, "NW," is a return of sorts to the voices and the northwest London landscape of her 2000 debut, "White Teeth." Like that book, it...
| Jul 15, 2012
So you're an admirer of James Joyce's "Ulysses"? Well, thank Trieste for that book. Why? Gordon Bowker's "James Joyce: A New Biography" (Farrar, Straus & Giroux: 608 pp., $35) shows readers how living in that seaport city in northeastern Italy helped...
| Jul 22, 2012
Where the Heart Beats
John Cage, Zen Buddhism, and the Inner Life of Artists
Penguin: 477 pp., $29.95
In the late 1940s and early 1950s, composer John Cage underwent related crises in his...
| Aug 13, 2012
| 9:13 AM
I got a fascinating email in my in box this morning, and wanted to spread the word about a project being spearheaded by the legendary director-provocateur Lars von Trier. Anyone in the world can get involved.
Trier wants people around the world to...
| Aug 18, 2012
| 2:55 PM
Brother Felix was a cross between Attila the Hun and Saint Francis of Assisi. I was his Achilles' heel. He taught honors English at Mount Saint Michael. By the end of my freshman year I could write the heck out of anything.
Brother insisted I keep a...
| Dec 21, 2012
| 1:16 PM
Learning last year that Bob Boone, one of my former teachers at Highland Park High School (never mind when), was still teaching creative writing to children and adults filled me with the kind of joy you get when you return to your hometown decades later...
| Nov 21, 2012
| 10:33 AM
Love 'em or hate 'em, there's no avoiding the holidays, and that's true on local stages as well as the shopping malls. But even the Scroogiest of souls could find something to celebrate in the gifts of theater, dance, and music offered up this season by...
| Nov 24, 2012
| 12:03 PM
There's a certain type of reader — often also a writer, with a leaf-fring'd MFA — who has it all figured out. The realist novel is a scam, a factory producing cardboard imitations of bourgeois life. This is the person at the party who mentions...
| Nov 11, 2012
The Christmas Schooner
Have yourself a City of Big Shoulders Christmas at the Mercury Theater, the current home of the beloved Chicago musical, “The Christmas Schooner.” Created by John Reeger and Julie Shannon, “Schooner”...
| Nov 16, 2012
| 3:19 PM
The authors of "The Guys in the Gang: And Other Stories" have the same name as a very famous author, and on the back flap of this book's jacket, there they are in 1999 in Dublin, posing with a statue of the very well known writer James Joyce — who,...
| Oct 4, 2010
| 4:34 PM
Monday's auction of fine books, manuscripts and historical photographs at Bonhams & Butterfields begins at 10 a.m. PDT. Among the signature pieces are a world atlas, dating from the late 1500s, with vivid color maps, detailed drawings of the locals......
| Jun 1, 2011
| 4:35 PM
Happy 85th birthday, Marilyn Monroe, reader of Ulysses and Bertrand Russell....