| Nov 6, 2011
| 5:37 PM
Countless words led to Stephen Sondheim receiving the Chicago Tribune Literary Prize for lifetime achievement Sunday, but some of the most difficult for him to write were also the simplest.
Looking relaxed on the Symphony Center stage in his olive-...
| Nov 23, 2011
| 11:10 AM
Festive, idealized Thanksgiving images are all too familiar. But we can't all live up to those images. If holiday hysteria has left you more frazzled than grateful, curl up with one of these unconventional takes on family and togetherness.
| Aug 19, 2012
A monthlong seaward expedition in search of Amelia Earhart's missing aircraft became a study in meditation, though not stillness, for a Chicago photographer widely esteemed for her visual accounting of artifacts.
The search, the subject of Discovery...
| Aug 23, 2012
| 1:56 PM
I recently took one of those online quizzes to test your accent, and it declared, accurately, that I come from the "Central U.S." The test said my accent is essentially no accent, the one that's employed by television news anchors, who are supposed to...
| Aug 23, 2012
| 2:01 PM
You know what's annoying?
Experimental short stories.
You know what else is annoying?
Adam Levin. He is 35 and grew up on the North Shore. He is talented and can't do anything half-
way, which makes him frustratingly, endearingly bold, the twin...
| Aug 24, 2012
| 3:54 PM
As Lucy Kobbs turned the final page of the seventh and last book in the "Harry Potter" series, she took a pencil to the wall beside her bed and memorialized the end of an era: 7/22/07, 3:20 a.m.
"It's one of those books that will stick with me for life,"...
| Sep 9, 2012
D.T. Max knew what he was getting into when he decided to write a biography of David Foster Wallace. In March 2009, he published a long piece in the New Yorker about Wallace's suicide and the author's inability to finish "The Pale King," the novel left...
| Sep 14, 2012
| 12:53 PM
Some of the biggest blockbuster movies in the last 10 years are based on books. (That means you, Harry Potter and “The Hunger Games”). But the annual television lineup has always included its share of book adaptations as well, dating back to...
| Oct 26, 2012
| 3:15 PM
I'm usually reading four or five books at a time. At the moment, I'm in the middle of Husain Haddawy's enchanting translation of “The Arabian Nights” (forget Cervantes and Sterne — this is where postmodernism begins); Jean-Luc Marion's...
| Oct 26, 2012
| 3:14 PM
Jami Attenberg’s family tragedy arrives bearing the imprimatur of Jonathan Franzen, who has praised the author’s “sympathy” and “artistry.” Franzen’s endorsement makes a fair amount of sense.
| Jun 5, 2012
| 2:15 PM
Michael Robbins called from the road. He explained he was driving back to Chicago from Mississippi, headed for his new apartment in Andersonville, white-knuckling at the wheel of a U-Haul too big for him, a drumbeat of imminent freeway death pounding in...