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Monday, October 20,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Journalists, and Other Thugs

by Neil Rajala
MONDAY, OCT. 20 — I've been spending a great deal of time around artists and other creatives these days, which has been a very pleasant experience. The common thread is always books; from painters to poets, people whose restless minds are always looking for the new and untried love to talk about the books that matter to them. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, October 9,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Two Kinds of Drama, with a Physics Chaser

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, OCT. 9 — Having always been fascinated by what the moon does, I found the recent blood moon spellbinding. The full moon of the night before was one of the brightest I've seen and, per my experiment on my back deck, was bright enough to read by. A celestial booklight, so to speak. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, September 25,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Jazz, With an Egg on Top

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, SEPT. 25 — Here is what we're reading: 2 A.M. AT THE CAT'S PAJAMASMarie-Helene BertinoTwenty four hours (Christmas Eve Eve, to be exact) in the life of Madeleine Altimari; nine-year-old misanthrope, bully and aspiring jazz singer. Life's dealt her a difficult hand; she lo...
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Thursday, September 18,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Adventures in Science and Waffles

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, SEPT. 18 — The weather's decidedly cooler, the long-sleeved clothes have been unpacked, I've even spent a couple of evenings reading in front of the fireplace. You know what that means, don't you? The season for getting caught up on our piles of books is upon us! Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, September 11,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Sneaky, Scary and Rock 'n' Roll

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, SEPT. 11 — We spent yesterday on the storm watch again. If you were in a situation to stay inside, listen to the rain and read a great book, things pretty much fell perfectly into place for you. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, September 4,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Getting Caught Up

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, SEPT. 4 — In the days when I was writing this newsletter from the Schuler store in downtown Grand Rapids, I used to include a weekly list of notable books that had just been released in paperback. I've heard from a few of you that you found that list useful, either to pick up a book you were interested in at a more affordable price, or because it made the title a more viable choice for your reading group. With that in mind, here are a dozen books on my "highly recommended" list that have seen a paperback release since I first wrote about them. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, August 28,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

New York, New York (and elsewhere)

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, AUG. 28 — I received an array of questions from one of this newsletter's readers last week about the book review process itself - how I got started, what the process is, how much and when I read, etc. Answering them was a good reminder for me how much I enjoy this, both the writing about what I've read and the responses from you I'm privileged to read every week. I've said it before, but thank you again for staying in touch and letting me know what you think. I'm truly grateful, and this would be a lot less fun without you. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, August 21,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Was It Funny for You, Too?

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, AUG. 21 — An eclectic trio this week, a reminder that the world of literature is able to cover more of the vast array of human interests and concerns that any other artform. If it interests you, worries you, or entertains you, there's undoubtedly a book on the subject. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, August 7,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Ronald Reagan and Quentin Coldwater

by Neil Rajala
THURSDAY, AUG. 7 — It's a good week for books. One of my most-anticipated titles of the year arrived and was more than worth the wait. A new American history book is making media waves, for the wrong reasons. Here's what we're reading:
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Thursday, July 31,2014

Book reviews: Notes from Neil

Sharp Satire for a Cool Summer

by Neil Rajala
Thursday, July 31 — Mid-70s during the day, mid-50s at night. Honestly, I couldn't have ordered summer weather more to my liking than what we've seen so far. Reading a book in one of the local parks without melting is greatly preferable to seeking out air conditioning indoors. My apologies to those of you who like the temperatures and the humidity levels higher - maybe next year. Here's what we're reading:
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