Book Review: Blood Meridian

Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy

Blood Meridian: Or the Evening Redness in the West by Cormac McCarthy (New York: Vintage, 2010, originally published in 1985. 368 pp) Cormac McCarthy was born in Rhode Island in 1933. One of six children, Cormac’s family moved multiple times in his childhood as his father accepted different occupations. In 1951, McCarthy attended the University of Tennessee majoring in Liberal Arts. Midway through his studies, McCarthy served in the Air Force for four years. After his service, McCarthy returned to college, writing his first short stories. In 1959 and 1960, he won the Ingram-Merrill Award for Creative Writing. Mccarthy’s first novel, The Orchard Keeper, was published in 1965. Several years, grants, and fellowships later, McCarthy published Suttree, Blood Meridian, and All… Read More →

Book Review: Rust

Rust by Jonathan Waldman

Rust: The Longest War by Jonathan Waldman (New York: Simon & Schuster, 2015. 304 pp) Jonathan Waldman has written for Outside, The Washington Post, and McSweeney’s. He has worked as a forklift driver, arborist, summer camp director, sticker salesman, and cook. He grew up in Washington, D.C., studied writing at Dartmouth and Boston University’s Knight Center for Science Journalism, and was recently a Ted Scripps Fellow in environmental journalism at the University of Colorado. Let’s Make Non-Fiction Interesting My reading life exists in a pre E.O.A.M period and a post E.O.A.M. period. This crazy acronym of which I speak represents the book, Emperor of All Maladies. This groundbreaking book narrates the history of cancer. It takes a complicated topic rife… Read More →

Television Show Review: Master of None: Season 1

Master of None Season 1

Master of None: Season 1 created by Aziz Ansari and Alan Yang (3 Arts Entertainment, Netflix, Universal Television) Starring Aziz Ansari, Noël Wells, Lena Waithe, Eric Wareheim, Kelvin Yu, and Todd Barry. Literary Comedy Upon hearing the question, “What is it about?” how often are you able to give a concise summary of a show? The plot, more often than not, drives such a discussion. The chemistry teacher turns to cooking meth. A handful of families wage war against each other to take hold of the iron throne. Comedy, though, tends to abstain from plot-heavy storytelling. Some shows tell stories in long narrative arcs, but many also use a handful of situations to generate comedy. These sitcoms remove character complexity,… Read More →

Television Show Review: The Man in the High Castle

The Man in the High Castle

The Man in the High Castle: Season 1 created by Frank Spotnitz (Amazon Studios, Big Light Productions, Electric Shepherd Productions) Starring Alexa Davalos, Rupert Evans, Luke Kleintank, DJ Qualls, Joel de la Fuente, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Rufus Sewell, Arnold Chun, Rick Worthy and Carsten Norgaard. In Praise of Imagination May we always promote and encourage imagination. The young child proclaiming “choo choo” as he pushes his toy train around the house often loses his creativity when the mandates of life require the squashing if the imaginative spirit. For me, the best stories often emerge from an imaginative foundation. The genre of magical realism best encapsulates my preferences. It takes life as we know it and alters it slightly to better explore… Read More →

Film Review: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Star Wars

Star Wars: The Force Awakens written and directed by J. J. Abrams (Lucasfilm, Bad Robot, Truenorth Productions, PG-13, 135 min) Starring Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, and Oscar Isaac. I Finally Saw Star Wars I finally saw Star Wars; I’m here to tell you all about it. It starts with [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED]. [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED]. [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED] [REDACTED]… Read More →

Book Review: Aquarium

Aquarium by David Vann

Aquarium by David Vann (New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 2015. 272 pp) David Vann’s work has earned numerous awards and has been featured in the Atlantic Monthly, The Guardian, and McSweeey’s, among others. He is a former Guggenheim fellow, National Endowment for the Arts fellow, Wallace Stegner fellow, and John L’Heureux fellow. He has earned degrees from Stanford and Cornell and currently teaches as a professor at the University of Warwick. A Roof over Your Head What would you do to put a roof over your child’s head? The prospect of passing on a legacy motivates many to great heights. But what about those people who never had a chance to get the kind of education and experience needed to… Read More →

Book Review: The Heart Goes Last

The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood

The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood (New York: Nan A. Talese, 2015. 320 pp) Born in Ottawa in the autumn of 1939, Margaret Atwood grew up in Ontario, Quebec, and Toronto. She attained her B.A. from Victoria College, University of Toronto and her M.A. from Radcliffe College. Atwood has written more than 50 works of poetry, children’s fiction, fiction, and non-fiction. While she is most known for her many novels, her book, Blind Assassin, received highest acclaim winning the prestigious Booker Prize in 2000. Currently, she lives with Graeme Gibson in Toronto. Shoe Steppers Often when considering the experiences of others, you’ll hear the suggestion of “stepping into another’s shoes.” Such a position provides ample value as empathy emerges… Read More →