Gaylord Dold Author of The Mitch Roberts Series and More - page 5

The Silk Roads: A New History of the World by Peter Francopan

The Silk Roads: A New History of the World, Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 2016 (645pp. illus., $30). At the height of its splendor in the era A.D. 650-800, Baghdad was a magnificent city, its parks, gardens, schools, hospitals, charitable foundations, mosques and bathhouses “lavishly…

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Annie Dillard–Quiet, Poet at Work

Writing a book, full time, takes between two and ten years. The long poem, John Berryman said, takes between five and ten years…Flaubert wrote steadily, with only the usual appalling strains. For twenty-five years he finished a big book every five to seven years…On plenty…

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Shrinking the Earth: The Rise and Decline of American Abundance by Donald Worster

Worster, Donald. Shrinking the Earth: The Rise and Decline of American Abundance, Oxford University Press, New York, 2016 (265pp.$27.95). Kansas has reason to be proud of Donald Worster, one of America’s foremost environmental historians. As a distinguished professor at the University of Kansas for more…

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Annie Dillard–Adapting Yourself to the Art

The body of literature, with its limits and edges, exists outside some people and inside others. Only after the writer lets literature shape her can she perhaps shape literature. In working-class France, when an apprentice got hurt, or when he got tired, the experienced workers…

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Michael Herr Dies on June 23, 2016: News from the War

Michael Herr died last June 23, 2016, a sad day.  Herr’s book “Dispatches” was the only true news from the war I remember.  I was subject to the draft during the War, fought not in Vietnam but in the streets of the United States, and…

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Annie Dillard–Writing and the Smell of Paint

A well-known writer got collared by a university student who asked, “Do you think I could be a writer?” “Well,” the writer said, “I don’t know…Do you like sentences?” The writer could see the student’s amazement. Sentences? Do I like sentences? I am twenty years…

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The Blizzard by Vladimir Sorokin

Sorokin, Vladimir (trans. Jamey Gambrell). The Blizzard, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, 2016 (181pp. $23) Bouts of spastic lust, dramatic descents into despondence followed by petulant ascents towards mania, simple bad humor, and a frequent taste for intoxicants like homemade vodka (and even rubbing…

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Kierkegaard on “understanding life.”

It is perfectly true, as philosophers say, that life must be understood backwards. But they forget the other proposition, that it must be lived forwards. And if one thinks over that proposition it becomes more and more evident that life can never be really understood…

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What Writers Can Learn from Cezanne

The landscape thinks itself in me, and I am its consciousness. Cezanne [ cialis transdermal | get viagra | name brand cialis | legally purchase viagra | book buy guest sign viagra | viagra online deals | buy viagra online | viagra tablets sale |…

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Staying Sharp: 9 Keys for a Youthful Brain through Modern Science and Ageless Wisdom by Emmons and Alter

Emmons, Henry (M.D.) and Alter, David (Ph.D.), Staying Sharp: 9 Keys for a Youthful Brain through Modern Science and Ageless Wisdom, Simon and Schuster (Touchstone Books), New York, 2015 (280pp.$25)  Despite the haughty platitudes about American “exceptionalism” in health care, ours is a nation plagued…

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