Archive | Book Reviews

How Two Novels Handle Contemporary Issues

How skillfully novelists handle contemporary issues can distinguish an average story from a very good one. Two books I read recently for book clubs help us see the rewards of mastering this aspect of fiction writing. Somebody Else’s Daughter by Elizabeth Brundage (Viking, 2008) Somebody Else’s Daughter would have been a worthwhile read had Brundage […]

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Everything Happens on Telegraph Avenue

In one sense, not a lot happens in Michael Chabon’s Telegraph Avenue. In fact, you could summarize the plot in a sentence or two. (I won’t give it away.) But, on another level, Telegraph Avenue is the center of our cultural universe circa 2010. Narrowly viewed, Telegraph Avenue presents a cultural history of Oakland CA […]

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