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October 12, 2013 | By Maeve Reston
Two presidential campaigns and 40 years of marriage and child-rearing behind her, Ann Romney finds herself in a surprising place: atop the bestseller lists with her own agenda in first position. Romney's new cookbook, "The Romney Family Table," started as an effort to stitch together family recipes. But at a time when her husband Mitt's loss in the 2012 campaign was still raw, she began writing and "it just flowed out. " Critics have mocked the book as a study in domestic perfection served on Oscar de la Renta tableware, but Romney said she wanted to show that their life "wasn't always perfect" and that raising five boys could be more than a little frustrating.
October 11, 2013 | By John Horn
Robert Redford was going down with the ship. Yes, the character he plays in writer-director J.C. Chandor's "All Is Lost," which arrives in theaters Friday, is a lone traveler on the Indian Ocean whose sailboat is taking on water from a gash in its hull. But this water emergency wasn't in Chandor's screenplay. Filming in the same massive outdoor tank that James Cameron used to make "Titanic" in Baja California, Chandor was shooting Redford inside the cramped quarters of the 39-foot Virginia Jean.
October 10, 2013 | By Jay Jones
Tim McGraw and Faith Hill are returning to Las Vegas to reprise last winter's successful run at the Venetian. The country superstars' performances begin in late October and continue on select weekends into next spring. The pair's “Soul2Soul” tours began more than a decade ago and continue to sell out at various venues despite chart-topping ticket prices. With their on-stage chemistry, it's probably not surprising that, in 2006, McGraw and Hill set a record for the top-grossing North American tour in country music history.  The duo return to the Venetian's 1,815-seat theater beginning Oct. 25 for a series of Friday and Saturday night gigs over 10 weekends, wrapping up April 12, 2014.
October 10, 2013 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
Richard Rodriguez's "Darling: A Spiritual Autobiography" appears at first to have been mistitled; it is neither a book about the spirit, strictly, nor an autobiography in any common sense. Rather, it's a collection of essays - some of which were originally published in Harper's, Kenyon Review and the Wilson Quarterly - that approach the larger questions of faith and character through a broad array of filters, from the 9/11 terrorist attacks to the legacy of Cesar Chavez, the collapse of newspapers to the reimagining of public space in a digital age. "I did not intend to write a spiritual autobiography," Rodriguez acknowledges in a brief "Note to the Reader.
October 6, 2013 | Hector Becerra
With her Dodgers dogged by injuries, Emma Amaya made a stop before work at the Our Lady Queen of Angels church in downtown Los Angeles, where she lit a prayer candle for her boys in blue. The next day, as the team prepared for game one of their series against the Atlanta Braves, Amaya, 57, rushed to take her train to Glendale, listening to the telecast on her iPhone, where she picked up her car for an hour drive to El Monte. There, amid countless bobbleheads like Vinny and Sandy and Fernando, her anxieties washed away in the warm pulsating glow of her television set and a growing Dodgers lead.
October 3, 2013 | By Michael R. Strain and Stan A. Veuger
Much is in flux in Washington this week. But two important realities have remained constant, whether certain elements in the GOP accept them or not: We must not default on the federal debt, and we shouldn't wait until we're on the brink of default to raise the debt ceiling. Here's why. As measured by economists Scott R. Baker, Nicholas Bloom and Steven J. Davis, policy uncertainty was more severe during the previous debt ceiling fight in the summer of 2011 than at any time since the terrorist attacks of Sept.
September 25, 2013 | By Richard Verrier
Location manager Brian O'Neill needed a location to film a wedding scene for the upcoming move "The Wedding Ringer," and he knew just the place: Hollywood United Methodist Church at the corner of Franklin and North Highland avenues. With its Gothic Revival cathedral, stained-glass windows, breezy courtyards and lush gardens, the church would be an ideal setting for the Screen Gems movie, in which comedian Kevin Hart runs a wedding consulting business. But there was another reason to select the church for the upcoming wedding scene.
September 19, 2013 | By Ruben Vives, Richard Winton and Kate Mather
An associate pastor is accused of sexually assaulted at least 20 parishioners at his Norwalk church, allegedly telling the women he had “healing hands” and threatening to call immigration officials if they reported him, authorities said. Detectives alleged that Jorge Juan Castro, 54, targeted female parishioners at Nuevas Buenas Church who were undocumented immigrants and spoke only Spanish, assaulting them at the church or during home visits. He was arrested and charged last week on suspicion of rape and related counts.
September 19, 2013 | By Ruben Vives, Richard Winton and Kate Mather
An associate pastor suspected of sexually assaulting at least 20 members of his Norwalk church told the women he had "healing hands" and threatened to call immigration officials if they reported him, authorities said. Detectives alleged that Jorge Juan Castro, 54, targeted women at Las Buenas Nuevas Church who were in the country illegally and spoke only Spanish, assaulting them at the church or during home visits. Los Angeles County sheriff's officials say the incidents date to his arrival in Los Angeles from Argentina in 2004.
September 17, 2013 | By Leon Logothetis
Man is free at the moment he wishes to be -- Voltaire As I was trying to find a free place to stay at a hostel in Zagreb, Croatia, and had just been unceremoniously rejected, I trudged out to the courtyard and heard a familiar accent. A Scotsman popped his head out a side door, and we started a chat. Like me, he was on a mission. My mission: Circle the globe in a bright-yellow motorcycle, dubbed Kindness One, and prove that people are basically good and will help. His mission: a four-year trek across the world by bicycle.
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