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Whether you roll your eyes whenever your mom urges you to “just give it a chance,” or you’ve recently gotten “Christian Grey” tattooed to your left breast, chances are you’ve at least heard of the recent erotic phenomena known as Fifty Shades of Grey. Now that we’ve established the fact that you don’t live under a rock, I think it’s safe to assume you may have heard of Bret Easton Ellis as well, author of ... Read More
Ever since I can remember, I’ve been a bit of a Nancy Drew nerd. When I was little, I would usually read one book from the series a day, curling up underneath my covers until the late hours of the night with my flashlight in hand, so my parents wouldn’t know I was still awake, finishing the remaining chapters. I eventually started creating my own “spy gear,” sneaking around the house (unsuccessfully), attempting to find a mystery to solve. ... Read More
 Reviewed by Erica Wetter Clover Adams: A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life By Natalie Dykstra (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) You’ve probably never heard of Clover Adams, but as English Professor Natalie Dykstra illuminates in this detailed biography of the 19th-century Washington socialite, she rubbed elbows with many of the nation’s elite. “A perfect Voltaire in petticoats,” friend Henry James commented. “Certainly not handsome” her husband-to-be ... Read More
 Reviewed by Melynda Fuller Barnheart: The Incurable Longing for a Farm of One’s Own By Jenna Woginrich (Storey) At some point, every city-dweller utters the words, “I wish I could just move to the country and start a farm.” In her new memoir, writer Jenna Woginrich lays out that idyllic landscape found so often in the deep sighs of those who feel trapped by urban life. After a short stint as a homesteader in Idaho, Woginrich takes a job in rural ... Read More
Reviewed by Amber Tamblyn The Bigger World By Noelle Kocot (Wave Books) Noelle Kocot’s 2006 book Poem For The End Of Time and Others Poems—a collection about the death of her husband and the subsequent burning cyclone of grief that followed—contains some of the most painful and powerful verses ever unearthed on the subject. But today, Kocot is looking at The Bigger World (Wave Books) and telling the dark, triumphant, and often ... Read More
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