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Darryl Campbell
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Anyone who has trouble with l’esprit de l’escalier—that feeling when you come up with the perfect comeback, about twenty minutes too late—should consider keeping one of Ben Schott’s inimitable books close to hand at all times. They’re catalogs of those... Continue reading
Posted Dec 12, 2013 at Omnivoracious
Most "best of" lists begin with a little equivocating about how hard it was to choose a winner. Not so for this one. At six volumes, 52 pounds, and a rather sizable asking price, Modernist Cuisine was easily the biggest... Continue reading
Posted Nov 14, 2011 at Omnivoracious
What can we say about the cartoonist Kate Beaton that hasn't been said already? That she's written over 320 comics on topics as varied as Herodotus and Napoleon, hyper-polite Canadians and fat ponies, and just about everything in between? That... Continue reading
Posted Oct 4, 2011 at Omnivoracious
If you've ever watched the Food Network after dinnertime, you probably know Alton Brown. He can be seen traveling around the country on bike and boat to explore "road food," officiating the action in Kitchen Stadium on Iron Chef America,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 28, 2011 at Omnivoracious
It's been three years since Amitav Ghosh last visited the 19th-century opium trade--and what a visit it was. His novel Sea of Poppies followed the crew and passengers of the trade schooner Ibis as they found themselves increasingly in thrall... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2011 at Omnivoracious
In Amy Waldman's The Submission, a Muslim architect wins a blind contest to design a Ground Zero Memorial, which throws a city of eleven million people--politicians, businessmen, journalists, activists, and normal people -- into an uproar. Waldman, no doubt drawing... Continue reading
Posted Aug 16, 2011 at Omnivoracious
Colin Cotterill is something of a polymath: he's worked for UNESCO, combatted child exploitation, produced a television series, drawn editorial cartoons, and written a successful mystery series. You may not know him, however, unless you keep close tabs on southeast... Continue reading
Posted Aug 5, 2011 at Omnivoracious
Readers, prepare to cringe: the winners of the 2011 Bulwer-Lytton contest, which challenges entrants to compose bad opening sentences to imaginary novels, have been announced. You might not know the book Paul Clifford, but you definitely know its immortal first... Continue reading
Posted Jul 26, 2011 at Omnivoracious
The latest trend you're missing out on is... typewriters? That's right, typewriters aren't just for famous authors and technophobes. They're everywhere nowadays, from brick-and-mortar vintage typewriter stores to iPad docks that look like a typewriter. And recently, the Penguin Group--home... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2011 at Omnivoracious
@Christine -- I did make it to the Kafka museum! It really reminded you that there was a person behind all of the imaginative (and labyrinthine) writing. @MarcJ -- Great shots of the bridge. It was sunny and warm while I was there, but I definitely imagined the bridge to be gloomier than how it appeared in my photos. For example, we passed an organ grinder and/or a Dixieland band every day when we crossed the bridge (our hotel was in the Hradcanska area), which was pretty jaunty, i.e. not quite the same mood as when the figures into Kavalier & Clay.
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2011 on Literary Sightseeing in Prague at Omnivoracious
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Pretty incredible how we have an endless taste for procedurals. Though I guess you could say the same about TV, too: just replace the NCIS/CSI franchises with Law & Order. Here's another interesting question: would the top 10 self-help titles from 2001 talk about the same themes as the ones from 2011? I wonder if you could do a psychological history of Americans through bestseller lists.
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The trailer for Sarah Vowell's Unfamiliar Fishes is about the Hawaiian dish 'plate lunch,' and it's both making me hungry for lunch and weirding me out with its use of blue noodles and rice as diorama backdrops.
Toggle Commented Mar 22, 2011 on New and Notable Book Trailers at Omnivoracious
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Throwing in a contender for #11: it's finally nice enough to contemplate reading outside.
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Dahve, thanks for the catch -- it's now the right Foer. Apologies for any potential inter-sibling literary confrontations we might have fomented.
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Is Meryl Streep out of the running?
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In 2008, Howard Schultz, the president and chairman of Starbucks, made the unprecedented decision to return as CEO eight years after he stepped down from daily oversight of the company and became chairman. Concerned that Starbucks had lost its way,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2011 at Omnivoracious
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Feb 17, 2011