Summer’s coming, and it’s time for some fun!

“Summertime, and the livin’ is easy….” So begins one of the George Gershwin’s greatest songs, an aria in “Porgy and Bess” reproduced by scores of musicians ranging from Ella Fitzgerald to Willie Nelson to Norah Jones.

Making peace with the past

I spent my boyhood living in Graham County in a community called Milltown in Robbinsville. In those days, there was still segregation amongst the white and Cherokee communities.

Good book, bad ending: ‘A Stolen Focus’

Sucker-punched. That’s how I felt when I finished reading Johann Hari’s “Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention — and How to Think Deeply Again” (Crown Publishers, 2022, 368 pages).

National Poetry Month: Honor our poets by listening

What month other than April could possibly be designated National Poetry Month?

From Soviet Russia to the American rural South

Time for the book review machine to travel back a few years.

From pole to pole, reimagining the future

It’s rare to come across a book that takes one far afield from the original focus presented by the artist at hand. Most books aim to keep the reader “at home,” so to speak, not venturing out and about into uncharted or unrelated territory.

An old guy looks at graphic books

Over the last year or so, I’ve noticed that the graphic books on the shelves of my public library are multiplying faster than a battalion of rabbits. 

Wild and free: two books, two approaches

A friend who was a fan of the Lee Child’s novels used to wear a T-shirt reading, “What would Jack Reacher do?”

‘Just Maria’ a good read for all ages

What’s up with me?

In my old age, am I regressing backwards to my teenage days? Or is Jay Hardwig’s novel “Just Maria” (Fitzroy Books, 2021, 133 pages) aimed at an adult audience as well as adolescents?

Pancakes, with a side of ‘Craft & Culture’

Several years ago, when my children and grandchildren were gathering for a week at the beach in a house I’d rented, a good friend gave me a pre-vacation tip that put me in the winner’s circle with the grandkids. “Make them an ice cream breakfast,” she suggested.

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