Showing posts from May, 2012

New York Times 2012 Summer Beach Books

Also check out Fall 2012: Books with Buzz.

Janet Maslin's list of recommended books for summer reading include Hilary Mantel's Bring Up the Bodies, Don Winslow's The Kings of Cool, and Colin Cotterill's Granddad, There's a Head on the Beach.  Check out Ms. Maslin's full NYT column here.

The NYT's Book Review published June 3 was also devoted to summer reading.

More recommendations for reading on vacation:

Chill Out With a Great Read

Four Books for the Beach

Recommended Reading: "The Fault in Our Stars" by John Green.

Once in a while I enjoy reading a Young Adult book.  A good YA novel typically offers clean and stylish writing and a compelling plot that moves along briskly.  On all of these counts, The Fault in Our Stars is a very good book.

The plot concerns love and illness, themes of interest to adults young and old.  I don't want to summarize it in too much detail as part of the book's charm is in the rolling out of events.  Simply put, the novel's protagonist is 16-year old Hazel Lancaster.  Hazel has terminal cancer.  At a cancer support group for children, she meets Augustus Waters.  Seventeen-year old Augustus' cancer is in remission, but the treatment cost him his right leg.  The two smart, self-aware teens are attracted to each other; and so their star-crossed story begins.  Reading about a teen with a terminal cancer diagnosis may sound tough.  Although this book certainly has its share of teary moments, The Fault in Our Stars is not cloyingly sentimental.  It has good …

Springtime: Baby Greens are Growing.

Olbrich Gardens.  Madison, Wisconsin.

The Trouble with Truffles: "Black Diamond" by Martin Walker is another fun book in the Bruno, Chief of Police, series.

Black Diamond is the third installment in Martin Walker's entertaining mystery series featuring Benoit "Bruno" Courreges.  Bruno is the police chief (and, in fact, the entire police force) in St. Denis, a small village in France.  In this outing with Bruno, there is so much going on that the plot almost defies summarization.  A key organizational point, however, is the truffle.

Truffles, the black diamonds of the title, are an important commodity in this region of France.  Bruno, Renaissance man that he is, hunts for the fabulous fungus with his dog, cooking with some of those that he finds and selling others in market at the neighboring village of Ste. Alvere.  But there's trouble in the truffle trade.

Bruno's friend and hunting partner, Hercule Vendrot, tells Bruno that big clients in Paris purchasing from the large Ste. Alvere truffle market are complaining that instead of receiving French Perigord truffles, they've been "fobbed off with fakes, cheap…

View from the Bridge.

Starkweather Creek.  Madison, Wisconsin

Jolt Your Creative Juices: Read "Wolf Kahn" by Justin Spring.

If you want to get excited about making some art, check out the second edition of Wolf Kahn by Justin Spring.    In addition to the interesting story of Mr. Kahn's life and work as an artist, the book contains many photos of his beautiful and inspiring paintings.  Good stuff.