Displaying articles for: January 2013

Love Rocks: The Elusive Spark

True story: I was assigned to sit next to my future husband in 10th grade Biology. He was tall, gangly, and acnified. He was a new kid that year, and I had been a new kid so many times growing up that I recognized the brand of misery immediately. Age fifteen was the year I’d decided to be cool, in spite of my industrial braces, complete with rubber bands. A back brace would soon follow. On that fateful first day of school, I sat down beside him and asked, “Can I see your schedge?” Short for schedule. Because I was cool. We just celebrated our eighteenth anniversary, and we still joke about “schedge”.

 

In spite of all the emotional and physical excruciations of being fifteen, an undeniable spark flared between us, and it has held true through the many years we’ve been together.

 

Today I’m celebrating sparks, and I’ve got two book recommendations that readers should check out immediately. Both are mash-ups of a sort, and both spark all over the place.

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What Do You Want to Change?

Have you made New Year’s Resolutions?  I always make the same ones each year:  lose 15 pounds, get more exercise, and wake up at 5:00 a.m. to write before everyone else is up.  My resolutions aren’t always successful, but I still make them.  And I still love the idea of transforming my life.

 

A great romance always involves characters who change.  As readers, we want to see characters who grow, learn, and then find happiness.  Just as I make resolutions to change, I love to experience it through fiction.  Romance helps give me the upbeat feeling and confidence to know I can embrace change.

 

 

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April 19: "What you see first, after the starting gun's crack, is a column of bobbing runners, thousands of them, surging downhill..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Poems That Make Grown Men Cry

And women too.  Luminaries from Colin Firth to Nick Cave and Jonathan Franzen chose the poems that bring them to tears, and the result is a stunning collection of poignant verse from writers like Auden, Whitman, Bishop, Larkin, Neruda and many others.  Warning: choking-up hazard.

The King of Pain

Trapped beneath his entertainment system, reality TV mastermind Rick Salter reflects on his life and tries to piece together the events of the previous evening. Seth Kaufman’s romp is an outrageous meditation on pain and entertainment in a deranged world in which the two are often interchangeable.

The Good Inn

Frank Black, frontman for the Pixies, has written a transgressive historical fiction with shades of Thomas Pynchon (focused as it is on the history of explosives and cinematic pornography), all set in a hallucinatory Edwardian Europe.