October 14, 2001 |
Look in my laundry room cabinet here in Los Angeles and you'll find a Mason jar of clear alcohol. It's never been opened, but I know its smell, its taste. Shake the jar: Bubbles will form on top and separate clean down the middle like a zipper: a good batch. My father, born on Clinch Mountain in east Tennessee 81 years ago, gave it to me when I moved to California. His cousin Willie brewed it.
April 20, 1999 |
Banished from Iran at age 6 to a Catholic boarding school in Pasadena, Lili, the Jewish girl who narrates part of Gina B. Nahai's entrancing second novel, wonders why. Why did her mother, Roxanna the Angel, step out of a window on Tehran's Avenue of Faith one moonlit night and flyaway? Why did her father, brooding in a mansion being stripped of its valuables, then get rid of her? We, too, inured to the conventions of Latin American magical realism, wonder why.
September 9, 2007
Jonathan Kirsch reviews "The Headmaster's Dilemma," a novel by Louis Auchincloss. Bill Boyarsky reviews "Broken Government: How Republican Rule Destroyed the Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches" by John W. Dean. Tim Rutten reviews "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy" by John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt. The following reviews are scheduled: Patt Morrison reviews "If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer," with commentary by the Goldman family.
October 4, 2011 |
As you know all too well, readers, we need guidance. Your guidance. In this case, it's your L.A. book picks we need - not just great books but books that will clue a newcomer in to this place, physically and socially, past, present and future. As part of our ever-growing Southern California Close-Ups project, we're pulling together a list of volumes that speak volumes about Los Angeles - maybe 50 books, maybe more, fiction and nonfiction. So here are the beginnings of our list, in no particular order.
September 15, 2007 |
Caspian Rain A Novel Gina B. Nahai MacAdam Cage: 300 pp., $25 -- A girl from the wrong side of the tracks marries a wealthy, arrogant young man who quickly tires of her and abandons her and their daughter. It's a familiar story. But transplant these characters to Iran in the decade before the Islamic Revolution, during the shah's final years, toss in some magical realism and the plot becomes more intriguing. That's the setting of "Caspian Rain," the entrancing fourth novel by Gina B.
October 21, 2007
*--* Fiction weeks on list 1. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (Riverhead: 21 $25.95) Two Afghan women struggle to survive jihad, civil war and Taliban tyranny. 2. Run by Ann Patchett (Harper: $25.95) A widower faces 2 complications when one of his children is shadowed by the birth mother. 3. Playing for Pizza by John Grisham (Doubleday: $21.95) A 2 hack pro quarterback finds refuge on a football team in Parma, Italy. 4.