| May 8, 2013
| 7:29 PM
Just before Ebony Ambrose went to bed about 10 p.m. Tuesday, her son Kevin Ambrose asked her if she had made the spinach gnocchi and apple cider pork like she had planned for dinner.
Kevin Ambrose, 19, was hanging out with a friend and had not eaten...
| May 11, 2013
| 11:31 AM
One of Chicago's treasures is the microfilm archive of alternative newspapers housed in Harold Washington Library. I'm particularly fond of exploring the Seed, the Chicago periodical that helped Mayor Richard J. Daley's less loyal subjects prepare for the...
| May 16, 2013
Having introduced the world to such colorful characters as a prostitute named Roxanne and a stalker who monitors “Every Breath You Take,” Sting will help launch a new Chicago-based storytelling initiative when he appears at the Chicago...
| May 17, 2013
| 3:18 PM
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Those words from "Dreams," a Langston Hughes poem, infuse Blue Balliett's newest novel.
At the start of the book, Balliett notes that by the end of the 2012...
| May 23, 2013
| 9:23 AM
Chance the Rapper is going to make sure he gets this right: rap music, a pop-star ascent from Chicago, a record deal, that whole fame thing — and on his own terms.
Chance, whose full name is Chancelor Bennett, has been drawing increasingly large...
| May 25, 2013
| 11:29 AM
"Who's got a gag for me today?"
Early on in "CO-MIX: A Retrospective of Comics, Graphics and Scraps." Art Spiegelman's upcoming career-spanner that's due out in September, we see a drawing of a much younger Spiegelman saying this to four tiny characters...
| May 25, 2013
| 11:28 AM
Although Ivan Brunetti has crafted many graphically striking comics and illustrations over the last quarter-century, perhaps the most telling inclusion in his new book, “Aesthetics: A Memoir,” is the worst looking. While attending the...
| Jun 2, 2013
In the beginning, Jason Methner was the impatient one.
After meeting Molly Lipsitz at a mutual friend's birthday party in Wicker Park, Methner, 27 at the time and in a master's program at Northwestern University, was eager to accelerate the...
| Jun 2, 2013
| 8:09 PM
"Someone came to us and said, 'Hey kids, do you want to make a movie?'" Judy Blume said with a laugh when I spoke to her by phone last month about the upcoming release of the film adaptation of "Tiger Eyes," based on her 1981 novel. "No, that's not what...
| Jul 10, 2013
| 3:01 PM
Edward Albee is known as a vaunted playwright. But really he's a relationship expert.
For more than 50 years, Albee's work has examined the tenuous bonds that bring couples, friends and families together and the all-too-human mistakes that force them...
| Mar 22, 2011
| 8:21 AM
The universally acclaimed Joyce Carol Oates returns to Chicago on the heels of "A Widow's Story" (Harper Collins, publication date: Feb. 15). The author's poignant, intimate memoir about the unexpected death of Raymond Smith, her husband of forty-six...