| Aug 2, 2012
"From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler" by E.L. Konigsburg
Every child fantasizes about running away from home to teach his or her parents a lesson. One summer, 12-year-old Claudia showed me exactly how it could be done, in comfort and...
| Oct 31, 2010
Did Ms. Scarlet silence Mrs. Peacock with a knife to the throat? Or did Col. Mustard throttle Professor Plum with a silver-plated candlestick? Mystery buffs can map out, investigate and solve murder mysteries at a variety of hotels and bed-and-breakfasts,...
| Jan 15, 2011
By what measures do we assign "greatness" to artworks? The word of experts? Public acclaim? Monetary value? By these standards, Jan and Hubert van Eyck's "The Adoration of the Mystic Lamb," also known as the Ghent Altarpiece, surely warrants a place in...
| Oct 28, 2010
Massive, worldwide success often remains a bit enigmatic, but this publishing breakthrough seemed especially unlikely.
The first novel begins with the dull thud of a family tree full of foreign names: The book starts slowly — digging into arcane...
| Sep 14, 2010
When Blue Balliett burst onto the tween literary scene with her first action-packed intellectual art mystery six years ago, it was, in every sense, a puzzler. An unknown Chicago teacher had propelled herself to the top of the country's bestseller lists...
| Nov 14, 2010
The Mind's Eye
Alfred A. Knopf: 270 pp., $26.95
Oliver Sacks has built a reputation on exploring the medical mysteries of individual patients to illuminate the larger mysteries of human experience.
"The Mind's Eye," a collection of essays...
| Feb 11, 2011
"Cold Weather," the latest micro-budget movie from writer-director-editor Aaron Katz, is like an exquisite minimalist painting — its beauty will move you, its simplicity will fool you. For there are layers and complexities to be found in the film,...
| Apr 15, 2011
| 1:26 PM
Here's what I like about Tea Obreht's debut novel, "The Tiger's Wife": Obreht can write. She can put a sentence together, inhabit characters with lives far different than hers; she can trace the horrors of a war she's never seen. All that is essential,...
| Apr 22, 2011
| 10:21 AM
Mother of Mercy, is this the end of Kurt Wallander?
Don't worry, the peerless Swedish police detective, the pride of the force in rural Ystad, doesn't get ruthlessly gunned down like Edward G. Robinson's Rico Bandello in "Little Caesar." It's that author...
| Feb 11, 2011
| 1:51 PM
If she weren't writing mysteries, Martha Grimes says, she might be running a tea shop.
You were expecting perhaps an auto-parts store?
No, you weren't. Not if you know Grimes' work, which includes 22 mysteries featuring the incisive Scotland Yard...
| Feb 28, 2012
“Project X” puts you right in the center of the action—in this case, what may be the biggest onscreen party of all time. Or to put it another way, says “Project X” co-star Jonathan Daniel Brown, the movie has an “anti-...