Literary


The Lost Art of Mixing

The Lost Art of Mixing

The Lost Art of Mixing is Pacific Northwest author Erica Bauermeister’s sort-of-sequel to The School of Essential Ingredients. We return to the cozy Seattle neighborhood restaurant run by Lillian, and meet some new characters (my favorites, the sham-author/actual accountant Al and his wife, Louise) while we delve deeper into the lives of others (the aging [...]

The Sadness of the Samurai

The Sadness of the Samurai

Caudillo de España por la gracia de Dios. Francisco Franco, by the Grace of God, the Leader of Spain, instilled his authoritarian dictatorship from 1936 until his death on November 20th, 1975. Generalissimo, or El Jefe, led his rebel Nationalists against the democratically elected Spanish Republic to victory in 1939. “Atrocities were committed by both [...]

The Hare With Amber Eyes

The Hare With Amber Eyes

By Edmund de Waal Edmund de Waal is a ceramicist who graduated from Cambridge with a degree in English. He inherited a collection of netsuke — miniature Japanese carvings — from his uncle, virtually the only things which survived from the fabulous wealth of his father’s family, the Ephrussi, cosmopolitan Russian Jews whose banking and [...]

Raveling by Peter Moore Smith

Raveling by Peter Moore Smith

“All right.” Eric laughed. “Mom’s nuts.” Eric Airie is a brain surgeon. He’s examining his mother who says she’s seeing ghosts. He can’t find anything wrong with her so he declares her crazy though the other person in the room, his brother Pilot, appears to be the one going through the psychotic break. So begins [...]

Strawberry Yellow

Strawberry Yellow

East Coast WASPS are known for speaking through clenched teeth—their jaw muscles taut and their lips barely moving. They smile through breakdowns, financial ruin, the suspension or arrest of a teen, and rejection by the golf, swim, beach, or yacht club admittance committee. Historically, the British have invoked and cultivated the “stiff upper lip” to [...]

The Age of Miracles

The Age of Miracles

Invasion of the Body Snatchers in 1978 left us feeling a wee bit pessimistic about the proliferation of humanity. 1981′s Mad Max gave us a post-apocalyptic view of the world that was barren, dirty, violent, but oh so sexy with a young (not outwardly crazy) Mel Gibson. The Road in 2010 with “the King” Viggo Mortensen [...]

The Big Truck That Went By

The Big Truck That Went By

When the title of Chapter One is “The End,” you know this non-fiction work is going to be heavy-duty. It also turns out to be much more than that. Here is Hometown Pasadena’s first installment of a book review by a local book club. For this occasion—wonderfully, but atypically—the author of The Big Truck That [...]

J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy

J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy

“The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults.” Is that why there’s a profusion of the c-word, the f-word, and other popular profanities? As someone who can swear with the best of them, I have no objections to people cursing, but doing so amongst friends and reading conversations on the page that are [...]

The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds

The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds

The Quickening Maze By Adam Foulds Who better than a poet to write a novel that deals with madness, creativity, and love? Adam Foulds brings a vividness of both diction and imagination to this story of Victorian nature poet John Clare and his time spent in an asylum which becomes ever more horrific as its [...]

NW by Zadie Smith

NW by Zadie Smith

Zadie Smith knows London and, village by village, street by street, bus line by bus line, and tube stop by tube stop, she excels at dissecting the great city’s tiny moments, tribal loyalties, dialects and, most of all, anxieties. In NW, she draws a portrait of London via its North West post codes, well outside [...]

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Maude Woods - Opening October 22nd in Pasadena

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Camelot and Vine

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