One work week until Memorial Day, and I am counting the days not just because of an extra day off work but because I have decided to institute a springtime reading weekend similar to my Thanksgiving weekend one. In my editor’s letter, I lay out the details of both my literary and culinary menus. Also, we have articles on the “dark side” of reviewing, a little culinary craziness, the meaning of color for books, and a musing on J.D. Salinger’s life. We hope you enjoy it all, and we wish you a wonderful pre-holiday week.
When a garden becomes more than practical it often becomes intimate. It offers a “pure pleasure in seeing things grow.” And for Nicki Leone that pleasure went beyond the eight-foot sunflowers and luminously blue morning glories; it caused her to delve deeply into the books of and about southern garden writer Elizabeth Lawrence in A Southern Gardener.
What do reviewers actually do? What’s actually behind their words? And does what they do make any difference to readers? Join Lev Raphael, a successful author and longtime reviewer, as he cuts and slashes his way through the behind-the-scenes jungle of book reviewing and the meaning of reviews for authors, editors and, when done well, for readers in Voyage to the Dark Side: Notes on Reviewing.
When a book’s pulse turns into a heart attack you know you have a great book. Lindsay finds one that delivers the knife-sharp edge and roiling fun you’d come to expect from an author who found his initial career calling in pots, pans, and the accompanying craziness of the professional kitchen. in If You Can’t Stand the Heat . . . .
Is it just books or is it the color itself? Lauren Baratz-Logsted ponders the meaning that the color pink has in the book world, wondering why it became such a pariah among a lot of readers. Why that particular color has “colored” attitudes when it has such a rich meaning is a journey she undertakes in All We Are Saying is Give Pink a Chance.
Planning for a reading weekend takes work but, oh, the rewards. With Memorial Day weekend arriving in only a few days, Lauren Roberts has been busy planning and will begin preparing for what will be the inaugural Great Memorial Weekend Read, a springtime version of the annual Great Thanksgiving Weekend Read in Across the Walnuts and the Wine.
J.D. Salinger has been written about far more than he has spoken, and that fact has intrigued many people over the course of his lifetime. His seclusion made his mythology, but how much did it add to his legend? And is he more famous for that or for his books? Guest columnist Jason Schwalm ponders the role the author created for himself in J. D. Salinger, the Con Artist.