| Mar 12, 2011
| 12:49 PM
“Everywhere were bluets and Spanish bayonets, goosefoot, morning glories and day lilies, the hairy-fruited bean, purslane and clotbur and sesame and panic grass and feverfew.”
While this may sound like a description of a magical garden, it&...
| Apr 8, 2012
Wallace Stegner wrote books about the American and Canadian West, so it's understandable that people consider the longtime California resident a Western author.
Stegner, a prolific novelist, essayist, conservation advocate and professor at Stanford...
| May 13, 2011
| 5:17 PM
Early on, there were signs that the Chicago Tribune Author Talks program with Kathryn Stockett, who crafted the best-selling novel "The Help," would be an event. A large literary happening, in fact.
An early indicator: Tickets sold out in a matter of...
| May 20, 2011
| 1:58 PM
"Work, as you will see, is imagined broadly in these stories - as labor, as chores, as business, as duty, as habit, as memory, as art, and as priestly avocation," writes Richard Ford in his introduction to this wonderful anthology of stories about work,...
| Dec 17, 2010
| 3:01 PM
Why should a newspaper, committed to the pursuit of facts, holding itself to the highest standards of accuracy and fairness, give prizes for fiction?
We grapple with this sort of question every year when the short story entries for the Nelson Algren...
| Jan 23, 2011
In 1984, when he was 51, novelist Reynolds Price learned that a pencil-shaped tumor, about 10 inches long and malignant, had invaded his spine. Several surgeries and dozens of radiation treatments followed, leaving him a paraplegic racked with pain and...
| Apr 4, 2012
| 11:16 AM
Three graduate student plays from the Yale School of Drama are selected for the seventh annual Carlotta Festival of New Plays, May 4 to 12 at the Iseman Theater,1156 Chapel St,, New Haven. The plays will run in repertory with 12 performances over nine...
| Feb 20, 2012
| 8:26 AM
The day of my first piano lesson, I picked out "Yankee Doodle," right hand only. It would be insane to start a beginner with one of Bach's partitas or one of Lizst's Hungarian rhapsodies. One starts simply and progresses by stages as far as one's...
| Feb 29, 2012
| 7:02 AM
The other day I cooed here in Wordville over the publication of the final volume of the Dictionary of American Regional English, and yesterday Mary Beth Marklein quoted those sentiments in an article published in USA Today. I stand by those statements....
| Jul 22, 2011
| 12:41 PM
A boy moves away from his small-town central Illinois home after his father murders a tenant farmer. Years later, an occasional childhood playmate ignores the boy in a high school corridor. Out of that awkward, wordless moment emerged "So Long, See You...
| May 18, 2012
| 11:25 AM
Earlier this year, when Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed a 100-book required reading list for his compatriots, it provoked anxiety, rekindling memories of Soviet-era censorship. The furor underscored an important point: that literature plays a...