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Visitors browse vendors on Main Street on the first afternoon of Market Days, Thursday, June 25, 2015.

(ELIZABETH FRANTZ / Monitor staff)

Downtown: Many merchants performed better during earlier Market Days

Sunday, July 5, 2015

For Gretchen Peters at Puppy Love Hot Dogs, Market Days is Christmas. Intown Concord’s annual street festival is her biggest weekend of the year, and this summer, the holiday was extra festive. “I had one of my busiest Market Days events ever, those three days in June,” Peters said. She credited the cooler weather in June, as opposed to the …

’Terminator,’ ‘Magic Mike’ fizzle at July 4th box office

Sunday, July 5, 2015

July 4th went off like a dud at the box office. Anticipated new releases Magic Mike XXL and Terminator Genisys fizzled, leaving the popular holdovers Jurassic World and Inside Out to top the holiday weekend. Despite the brawny enticements of Channing Tatum and Arnold Schwarzenegger, the four-week rule of Universal’s dinosaur sensation Jurassic …

Just published: ‘Deception’ and ‘The PeaceSeeker’

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Deception Dan Lawton of Belmont recently self-published his first book, Deception. The crime-thriller is set in Topeka, Kan., somewhere Lawton has never been. When officer Billy Lewis’s father, the sheriff, is killed by a group of hitmen, Lewis seeks out revenge, money and the heart of a Cuban immigrant. Lawton is a technical …

Fireworks displays for the Fourth of July

Sunday, June 28, 2015

If you’re not up for setting off your own Fourth of July fireworks, here’s a list of some area towns that will put on a display for you: July 3 Ashland: Fireworks at dusk at L.W. Packard Ball Field. Rain Date: July 5. Weirs Beach: Fireworks at midnight …

Former Durst prosecutor writing about book about murder case

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The former district attorney from New York who tried to convict millionaire murder suspect Robert Durst is writing a book. Jeanine Pirro’s He Killed Them All will be published Nov. 3, Gallery Books announced Tuesday. According to Gallery, a Simon & Schuster imprint, the former Westchester County D.A. …

Don Winslow returns to drug wars in thriller ‘The Cartel’

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Don Winslow is obsessed, and he knows it. “People refer to this as the ‘Mexican drug problem’ and it’s not the Mexican drug problem. It’s the American drug problem. It’s the European drug problem,” the crime novelist said …

In this year’s best beach reading, Jane Austen meets Singapore

Sunday, June 28, 2015

If summer is a time when we allow ourselves to simply enjoy our entertainments, there’s no timely cocktail I’d rather recommend than China Rich Girlfriend, the sequel to Kevin Kwan’s lively Crazy Rich Asians. The story of Rachel …

New Edna O’Brien story anthology spans 5 decades

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Put on a pot of tea and curl up with The Love Object, the new collection of Edna O’Brien stories. If you’re lucky, it’ll be cold, damp and misty outside. Many of the 31 stories published between 1968 …

Willie Nelson memoir is a gift to fans

Sunday, June 28, 2015

In 2012 the city of Austin erected an eight-foot-tall bronze statue of Willie Nelson in the heart of the business district. Schoolchildren, churchgoers, tourists, slackers, conventioneers, tech geeks – everybody, it seems – now congregate around this ponytailed …

The crossroads of racism

Sunday, June 28, 2015

From the riots in Ferguson to the movie about Selma, race has been at the forefront of the national conversation recently. On the news and at our dinner tables, the country is discussing how far we still have …

Annie unearths dark roots in ‘Let Me Die in His Footsteps’

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Set against alternating backdrops of flourishing Kentucky lavender fields and a struggling tobacco farm, Lori Roy’s Let Me Die in His Footsteps traces the story of Annie Holleran, how she came to be, and how her entire town …

PHOTOS: Market Days 2015

Saturday, June 27, 2015

The 41st annual Market Days Festival wraps up in downtown Concord today. For more information, entertainment schedules and a map, pick up this week’s Concord Insider. …

Newest members diversify film academy

Friday, June 26, 2015

In choosing its newest members, the film academy went for younger and more diverse. Kevin Hart, Common, Emma Stone, Dev Patel and Whiplash writer-director Damien Chazelle were among the 322 new academy members announced Friday. “It’s really gratifying …