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Stevie Nick's record "Belladonna" at Pitchfork Records.

Sex, drugs and mystification

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Stevie Nicks wrote the only No. 1 Billboard hit Fleetwood Mac ever had (“Dreams”), but Zoe Howe’s fawning new biography, Stevie Nicks: Visions, Dreams and Rumours, offers ample evidence that talent and stage charisma aren’t the only reasons the 66-year-old rocker has for so long overshadowed her bandmates: Nicks has rarely stopped supplying salacious material to writers more interested in …

A straight-forward look at the war in Afghanistan

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Post-9/11 CIA memoirs keep coming with a frequency that must elevate the blood pressure of those Langley traditionalists who believe that the agency’s past should be forever entombed. Former CIA directors, division chiefs, station chiefs, lawyers, case officers and analysts have all offered their takes on recent history. The work, collectively, tends toward …

Monopoly inventor isn’t who you think

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Nations, politicians, athletes, icons – they all need their foundation myths. But George Washington did not chop down the cherry tree. Michael Jordan was not cut from his high school basketball team. And Charles Darrow did not invent “Monopoly.” Yet for decades Parker Brothers peddled the story: how Darrow, an out-of-work salesman, was …

Strong storytelling in Spanish ‘The Siege’

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Arturo Perez-Reverte’s latest book is a riveting wartime murder mystery that won the Crime Writers’ Association’s International Dagger award. It is, also, a historical novel that is at risk of being thwarted by the author’s ambition. Set in …

Much to savor and laugh about in ‘Last American Vampire’

Sunday, February 8, 2015

History buffs with a sense of humor and an unslaked thirst for the macabre will find much to savor in The Last American Vampire, Seth Grahame-Smith’s latest, delightfully loopy riff on our nation’s past. The novel takes up …

Review: Duchovny writes funny tale of Elsie the cow

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The actor known for playing Fox Mulder on the TV series The X-Files and Hank Moody on the show Californication shows his comic side with Holy Cow, a tale of Elsie the cow. Elsie enjoys life on the …

Thievery, minus the romanticism

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The brotherhood of criminals gets an incisive, gritty look in this highly entertaining launch of John Clarkson’s new series. Among Thieves shows the importance of unconditional loyalty and business acumen for those who operate outside the law. Yet …

Mark Zuckerberg makes 3rd book club pick

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Mark Zuckerberg’s new book club pick is a best-seller about a sociologist’s time in a Chicago housing project and his unexpected friendship with a gang leader. The Facebook CEO posted on his page Monday that he had selected Sudhir Venkatesh’s Gang Leader for a Day, first published in …

The emperor’s stolen actress

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Imagine you’re a film producer who’s developing a new movie to be based – like your Oscar-winning The Last Emperor (1987) – on a true story. What could be more cinematic than the bizarre tale of how North …

Amid ‘Mockingbird’ sequel buzz, worries about Lee’s wishes

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Hometown friends and fans of To Kill A Mockingbird author Harper Lee are struggling to reconcile a publisher’s sensational announcement – that her decades-old manuscript for a sequel has been rediscovered and will be released – with the …

Second Harper Lee novel to be published in July

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

To Kill a Mockingbird will not be Harper Lee’s only published book after all. Publisher Harper announced yesterday that Go Set a Watchman, a novel the Pulitzer Prize-winning author completed in the 1950s and put aside, will be …

Book Review: ‘Fear the Darkness’ is solid story

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Relationships require a certain amount of vulnerability – the willingness to expose yourself emotionally, hoping that happiness is the ultimate goal, but realizing that being hurt comes with it, too. Becky Masterman’s superior series explores how former FBI …

An icon through the eyes of a friendship

Sunday, February 1, 2015

This book appears just in time. How many people under age 50 even recognize the name Gore Vidal? No, he’s not television’s onetime horror host Count Gore De Vol. Possibly some millennials will recall a few of Vidal’s …