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John Mcphee

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ENTERTAINMENT
February 28, 2010 | By Susan Salter Reynolds
There's a fault line opening in John McPhee. After 28 books and countless essays, he is giving us, bit by bit, a more personal sense of who he is. In a recent, beautiful piece for the New Yorker, he combined an essay on pickerel with memories of his father's death and a lasting image of his father's bamboo fishing rod. The piece took many readers by surprise -- not the style, which was the same seamless combination of carefully chosen details and information,...
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ENTERTAINMENT
June 5, 2011 | By Susan Salter Reynolds, Special to the Los Angeles Times
To Be Sung Underwater A Novel Tom McNeal Little, Brown: 436 pp., $24.99 You can often tell where a musician has trained or with whom a painter has learned technique. In the case of the European masters, art historians looking at a particular work can often trace the lineage to a region, a studio, a teacher. It is no different for literature — you get a whiff of John McPhee in the descriptive passages here, a bit of Ron Carlson in the mysterious interplay of humans and landscapes there, a smidgeon of Jayne Anne Phillips in the historic context, a taste of Raymond Carver in the curveballs or Gordon Lish's tough-love New York workshop style in the sentence structure or the lack of sentiment.
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BOOKS
October 7, 1990 | CHARLES SOLOMON
As John McPhee roams the canyons and mountains of Utah, Nevada and eastern California with geologist Kenneth Deffeyes, he reflects on the history of geologic time scale, the theory of plate tectonics (popularly known as "continental drift") and the geologic history of the region. McPhee obviously loves geology and delights in the ringing syllables of technical terms, names of rocks and geological time periods.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 17, 2011
BOOKS Paul Theroux The author of "The Mosquito Coast" celebrates 50 years of globe-trotting by collecting the best writing on travel from the books that shaped him. "The Tao of Travel: Enlightenments From Lives on the Road" includes writings from Vladimir Nabokov, J.R.R. Tolkien, Samuel Johnson, Eudora Welty, Evelyn Waugh, Mark Twain, Anton Chekhov, John McPhee, Graham Greene and Ernest Hemingway. Book Soup , 8818 W. Sunset Blvd. 7 p.m. (310) 659-3110. http://www.booksoup.com . Francisco Goldman The author of the new autobiographical novel "Say Her Name," which explores love and grief and was written after his wife's death in a bodysurfing accident, will read from and discuss his work.
BOOKS
November 9, 1986 | James Trefil, Trefil's latest book is "Meditations at 10,000 Feet" (Scribner's). and
California was not the last American frontier. A full half century after the lure of gold brought settlers to these shores, the frontier shifted eastward, back to those empty spaces of the High Plains that were passed over in the rush to the coast. In "Rising From the Plains," John McPhee gives us a glimpse of this open, sparsely settled land--its geology, the story of some of the people who settled it, and some rather disturbing thoughts about its future.
BOOKS
January 31, 1993 | Page Stegner, Stegner is the author of three collections of essays on the American West.
Before the theory of plate tectonics--that is to say, before about 1968--those of us who went to college with underdeveloped right brains frequently fulfilled the university science requirement by suffering through two semesters of geology, a subject we incorrectly imagined might prove more comprehensible than physics or chemistry or statistics.
NEWS
August 6, 1989 | BOB SIPCHEN, Times Staff Writer
John McPhee faced the San Gabriel Mountains, lifted a chunk of rock he had been examining, and tossed it into a rusty sheet metal culvert. Clop! Crack! Clunk! The rock bounded back in the direction from which it once came. McPhee smiled like a naughty boy at this disruption of the morning tranquillity--or maybe at the symbolism of the Sisyphean gesture.
BOOKS
August 26, 1990 | Charles Bowden, Bowden is the author of "Blue Desert," "Killing the Hidden Waters" and, most recently the novel "Red Line" (W. W. Norton).
This is the latest installment in John McPhee's portrait of America, in this instance a visit with the U.S. merchant marine. McPhee has become something like the Farmer's Almanac--annual and taken for granted. He is first in the New Yorker, then somewhat later the pieces appear between the covers of a book, and we sometimes half-listen to the steady voice because it is so dependable. But when we turn to him we become absorbed because we learn things we did not know.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 2, 1996
"A metropolis that exists in a semidesert, imports water 300 miles, has inveterate flash floods, is at the grinding edges of two tectonic plates, and has a microclimate tenacious of noxious oxides . . . ", JOHN McPHEE, "The Control of Nature"
ENTERTAINMENT
February 28, 2010 | By Susan Salter Reynolds
There's a fault line opening in John McPhee. After 28 books and countless essays, he is giving us, bit by bit, a more personal sense of who he is. In a recent, beautiful piece for the New Yorker, he combined an essay on pickerel with memories of his father's death and a lasting image of his father's bamboo fishing rod. The piece took many readers by surprise -- not the style, which was the same seamless combination of carefully chosen details and information,...
BOOKS
May 28, 2006 | David L. Ulin, David L. Ulin is book editor of The Times.
THERE'S a moment in John McPhee's "Uncommon Carriers" that captures the tension at the heart of his work. The scene is the pilothouse of a tugboat pushing a string of barges up the Illinois River. McPhee, the consummate watcher, has caught the eye of a deckhand named Rick Walker, who doesn't like what he sees. "He takes note of my routines with unconcealed contempt," the author explains, "in part because I don't have any....
SPORTS
March 7, 2000 | RANDY HARVEY
In other sections of the newspaper, you can find ratings that various interest groups--the Christian Coalition, Americans for Democratic Action and the League of Conservation Voters, for example--have assigned to various politicians. Only in this section--this space, actually--can you find the ratings of Sports Heroes for America--SHAM. Those ratings are particularly relevant today, Super Tuesday.
BOOKS
August 16, 1998 | ROY PORTER, Roy Porter is the author of numerous books, including, most recently, "The Greatest Benefit to Mankind: A Medical History of Humanity" (W.W. Norton)
"Annals of the Former World" is not merely a captivating travel book. John McPhee takes you with him all the way across the United States, largely by way of Interstate 80, ending on Nob Hill in San Francisco at the top of Coit Tower, evoking places and faces on the way with all the skills of a master journalist. But you are also led on a journey back through time, at least 3.5 billion years, through the landscapes that, in all their glorious variety, form the bedrock of the nation.
NEWS
April 4, 1997 | SUSAN SALTER REYNOLDS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
There was a time when young journalists dreamed of growing up to become John McPhee, of someday writing for newspapers and magazines that allowed them to write literary journalism.
BOOKS
September 30, 1990
During Jack Miles' call to John McPhee to amplify the review of "Looking for a Ship," both men ran aground. Miles reports McPhee said that the Scandinavians have quit shipbuilding altogether. Both men need refloating. McPhee's accuracy, so beautifully applied to birchbark canoes and to the Swiss Army, is reliable when he paddles the canoe, marches in the Alps and sails the freighter. But, obviously, McPhee has not visited the Baltic lately. On a Baltic tour last month I was shown a gigantic liner under construction at the Masa Yards in Helsinki harbor, Finland.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 2, 1996
"A metropolis that exists in a semidesert, imports water 300 miles, has inveterate flash floods, is at the grinding edges of two tectonic plates, and has a microclimate tenacious of noxious oxides . . . ", JOHN McPHEE, "The Control of Nature"
BOOKS
January 31, 1993 | Page Stegner, Stegner is the author of three collections of essays on the American West.
Before the theory of plate tectonics--that is to say, before about 1968--those of us who went to college with underdeveloped right brains frequently fulfilled the university science requirement by suffering through two semesters of geology, a subject we incorrectly imagined might prove more comprehensible than physics or chemistry or statistics.
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