Saturday, February 6, 2016

Lifestyle - Books

  • Books | August 11, 2013

    Dealing with murder and Nazis; at least the countryside is really cool

    “The Light in the Ruins” has a lot going for it. It’s a murder mystery that takes place in Italy — not just Italy but Tuscany — that has its roots in World War II but is solved in 1955 and involves a once prosperous family that

  • Books | August 11, 2013

    Are the mentally ill really mentally ill?

    This is an important book by the psychiatrist who chaired the DSM-4 task force, which produced the 1994 edition of the “bible” of psychiatric disorders, a reference used almost universally by American psychiatrists, psychologists, counselors, and health insurance companies.  The author has concluded that the

  • Books | August 11, 2013

    15 years into the wizarding world of Harry Potter


    When I came to Manhattan Public Library in June 1999, a steady buzz was rippling around the community…and the world. It sounded like this: harrypotterharrypotterharrypotter. I did not realize at the time that I had entered my new career in children’s librarianship at a

  • Books | August 11, 2013

    Listening to the voices of the Kansas pioneers

    With the passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act in May, 1854, the two territories were open for American settlement. Each was to choose by popular vote whether it would be slave or free.  Congress assumed that Nebraska, being next to free Iowa would be free, and

  • Books | August 04, 2013

    How the Americans survived calamity in 1776 and lived to fight again

    It is a very short list of historians who know more about the American Revolution than Joseph Ellis. He is the noted author of the Pulitzer Prize winning book, Founding Brothers and of a Jefferson biography titled, “American Sphinx.” But Ellis’ fame has occasionally gotten

  • Books | August 04, 2013

    The next best effort from Neil Gaiman

    The “Ocean at the End of the Lane” is one of those books everyone should read, it is that good. The main character and narrator, whose name we never learn, returns to Sussex, England, for a relative’s funeral. It has been decades since he

  • Books | August 04, 2013

    Have you read these famous native Kansas writers?


    In anticipation of the Kansas Book Festival, scheduled in Topeka on Sept. 7, it’s time to consider a few well-known Kansas writers. Fans of western and historical fiction will be familiar with the works of Don Coldsmith. Born in Iola, Coldsmith trained as a family

  • Books | August 04, 2013

    A look inside the intriguing science of memory

    This is a fascinating book on the everyday character and eccentricities of memory, written by a man who is both a professional researcher studying memory and an astute personal observer of memory in himself and those around him. That combination of skills in itself makes

  • Books | July 28, 2013

    The accomplishments, and failures, of our least-remembered presidents

    Dozens of books have been written on the greatest American presidents. Amazon has nearly 700 entries for FDR, and well past 1,000 for either Lincoln or Washington. Biographers of the stature of Doris Kearns Goodwin, Joseph Ellis, William Leuchtenberg and Edmund Morris make careers out of delving

  • Books | July 28, 2013

    Familial experiences in Paris across time

    Edward Rutherford, a most satisfying novelist, writes historical fiction, tending toward epics. “Sarum” is Exhibit A. Other of his books, which can approach 1,000 pages and aren’t long enough, include “London,” “The Forest” and “New York: The Novel.” His most recent endeavor, “Paris,” is another

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