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Books

This photo provided by Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins, shows the book cover of "The Harder They Come," by author T.C. Boyle. (AP Photo/Ecco/HarperCollins)

Dramatic events unfold in TC Boyle’s new novel

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

T.C. Boyle’s new book is about serious subjects: a tourist from a cruise liner killing a robber at a port of call, a mentally ill young man running around with an assault rifle in the coastal forests of northern California, a radical movement that doesn’t recognize the legitimacy of laws or those who enforce them. But Boyle delivers it all so engagingly, with character development that puts the reader inside the heads of the characters so that you know intimately what they are feeling and thinking, that it does not seem like a “serious” book. It’s a damned fine one, though. The poisoning of forests …

Getting retribution over childhood bullies

Sunday, March 29, 2015

What becomes of bullies when they grow up? Do they evolve into decent, kind human beings, or does their capacity for malice grow along with their bodies? Allen Kurzweil explores this issue – and much more – in Whipping Boy, a compulsive account of his search for the childhood tormentor who made his …

Big data

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Even if we aren’t certain what to make of big data, we all know that it’s, well, big. The phrase is suddenly everywhere, tripping off the tongue in domains from marketing to management to medicine. Newly massive and complex data sets, along with advanced methods of probing them, it is said, are remaking …

Anne Tyler’s 20th novel continues her streak

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Anne Tyler published her first novel in 1964, and some 50 years later she is still going strong. A Spool of Blue Thread, her 20th novel, is a miracle of sorts, a tender, touching and funny story about …

Addario reveals vulnerability in memoir ‘It’s What I Do’

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Photojournalists, particularly the ones who repeatedly cover war zones, have a reputation for being tough, fearless, sometimes cavalier and repeatedly lucky in a way that defies logic. So, it’s striking the number of times Lynsey Addario writes in …

3 E.B. White classics will soon be available as e-books

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Three E.B. White classics read by millions of parents to their children will soon be available on the digital screen. HarperCollins announced last week that Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little and The Trumpet of the Swan can be purchased …

Book offers info on establishing family values

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Money can be a touchy subject for people of all income levels, but a new book on the importance of teaching kids to handle their finances suggests parents stop avoiding the topic and start talking turkey. The Opposite …

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 …