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‘Home’ explores how habitats make us human

Sunday, February 14, 2016

When traveling in a foreign city, or even just working late at the office, we may suddenly be flooded with a feeling: I just want to go home. There’s a scientific reason behind that yearning, says neuroanthropologist John Allen. Unlike any other species, he writes in his new book, we are “fundamentally home-minded.” In his engaging and informative natural history, Home, Allen explores “how habitats makes us human.” To demonstrate, he takes readers on an evolutionary tour, with stops at ape nests, ancestral human hearths and American cities where thousands go without homes. Rest, restoration and relationships – what I will call the 3Rs – …

‘Keith Richards: A Life in Pictures’ a treat for super-fans

Sunday, February 14, 2016

It really bugs me when people say that Keith Richards looks like a pirate. Don’t these pseuds know that they’re talking about one of the coolest-looking rock stars to press his boot prints into this uncool Earth? How can Keith Richards look like anything other than Keith Richards? Close your eyes and ask …

Jihadist terrorism not a threat?

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Confession: I burst out laughing when I read the jacket copy of Peter Bergen’s new book. Not because of the title – United States of Jihad: Investigating America’s Homegrown Terrorists isn’t what you’d call a rib-tickler. And not because of the intriguing and timely premise. Bergen seeks to explore why some Americans are …

A reporter covers 2 decades of tumult in the Middle East in ‘All Hell Broke Loose’

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Regular viewers of television’s evening news are sure to have seen video of Richard Engel delivering narratives as he dodges bullets, bombs and artillery barrages while reporting on the latest conflicts in the Middle East. Over the past …

‘Find Her’ poses tough questions, but not necessarily the answers

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Lisa Gardner is the master of the psychological thriller and her latest, Find Her, focuses as much on the step-by-step methods of solving a case and the turmoil and disruption of the victim trying to adjust after suffering …

J.K. Rowling announces 8th Harry Potter book

Sunday, February 14, 2016

When die-hard Harry Potter fans first heard that J.K. Rowling was writing a sequel to her beloved seven-part series, they couldn’t wait to get their hands on the book. Then they realized the sequel wasn’t going to be a book at all – it was a play. Harry …

Investigative journalism finds a new outlet: the stage

Saturday, February 13, 2016

The two uniformed jail guards argued angrily, cursed each other, then erupted into a nasty brawl with punches and furniture and bodies flying. As the fight ended and the guards skulked away to lick their wounds, a breathless …

Ray Duckler: Joe Randazzo razzes Trump, and everyone else, for that matter

Friday, February 12, 2016

For someone like Merrimack Valley High School graduate Joe Randazzo, Donald Trump is pure gold. Randazzo is a satirist who holds up a mirror to show us how dumb we are, or can be. Last Wednesday, a Trump-roasting …

A few theater numbers worth checking out

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

There are a few theater productions of note this weekend (and next), from high school to community level. If you’re looking for a romantic evening on the town or some fun for the whole family this weekend, you …

At 25, Deadpool’s greatest power isn’t what you think it is

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Perhaps even more impressive than mutant regenerative abilities or ninja-level skills with katana blades, Deadpool has one super-power that now seems to stand above the rest: The “Merc With a Mouth” somehow survived the ’90s. This from a …

‘Kung Fu Panda 3’ tops Super Bowl weekend at box office

Sunday, February 7, 2016

The Coen brothers’ Hail, Caesar! and the Jane Austen-monster mashup Pride and Prejudice and Zombies followed distantly behind Kung Fu Panda 3, which remained on top of the box office over Super Bowl weekend. DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu …

A look at Teddy Roosevelt and the birth of the primary process

Sunday, February 7, 2016

If Donald Trump wins the Republican nomination for president, over the strenuous efforts of party regulars to derail him, he ought to send a note of thanks to Geoffrey Cowan. Almost 50 years ago, Cowan led a campaign …

Cam Newton took fancy pants where other pros dare not go

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Super Bowl fashion Lots of athletes have style, but could they rock the Cam pants? Super Bowl 50 is here and it has a breakout star: the $849 Versace skinny pants of Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton. Newton …