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bob-mustin's picture
Jan.31.2014
The Orphan Master’s Son, by Adam Johnson   As is my case with most books, I warmed up to this one slowly. My warming, however, became only tepid with The Orphan Master’s Son. I like stories, you see, and defined characters within such stories. That makes me an odd fit for postmodern...
steven-belanger's picture
Oct.22.2013
Photo: Movie poster, from its Wikipedia page.   This is a very well-acted and -directed film that maintains its tension even though you know how it's going to end.  (It's based on the main character's book, after all.)   Paul Greengrass, director of United 93, a couple of Bourne...
bob-mustin's picture
Sep.27.2013
Okay this post is going to be a bit of a thematic stretch, but it really does edge into my media theme for this blog. The missus and I have been watching a lot of British TV programming lately, and I find myself comparing it to the domestic TV fare. Of course any casual watcher of British TV will...
steven-belanger's picture
Aug.17.2013
Photo: Movie's poster, from its Wikipedia page.   Elysium is a very satisfying action / sci-fi movie with a surprisingly blatant social commentary about immigration and health care.  Because immigration is such a fireplug, your stance on it may very well decide how you enjoy the movie...
bob-mustin's picture
Aug.02.2013
The Unwinding - An Inner History of The New America, by George Packer     I came by this book via a serendipitous path, and it’s proven quite a gift. Anyone who hasn’t been living underneath a rock for the past two decades understands that the U.S. - and possibly the world - is...
bob-mustin's picture
Aug.10.2012
The French reading public hasn't become enamored of e-books to the degree U.S. readers have. In fact, from 2003 to 2011 print book sales in France increased by 6.5%. The reason? The French government subsidizes book stores there. This says a lot about both the value France puts on tradition and...
bob-mustin's picture
Apr.28.2012
Infidel, by Ayaan Hirsi Ali image via straitjacketsmagazine.com    I recently found this book on the living room bookshelves, one I soon learned the missus had read for her book discussion group. I was familiar with this woman’s role in Dutch Parliament, her stand against the worst acts...
robert-earle's picture
Feb.11.2012
    A Harvard professor, Rachel St. John, has just published a useful and comprehensive short history of the western U.S.-Mexico border (meaning from El Paso to San Diego.)   It is a tale that approaches geography as a multiform kind of space: social space, indigenous space,...
bob-mustin's picture
Dec.21.2011
End of the year magazine issues tend to be retrospectives, or the content seems more strained than usual. The January 2012 issue of Harper's Magazine seem to fall in line with the latter. However, there's one curious juxtaposition: A piece of first person reportage by Cecelia Balli, "Calderon's...
laurel-krause's picture
Jul.14.2010
My sister Allison Krause was one of four students killed in the 1970 Kent State shootings. You may have heard about that day in American history - May 4, 1970 - when the Ohio National Guard opened fire on unarmed students protesting the invasion of Cambodia. Some of those killed or injured...