Preview – D’Aulaires’ Book of Norse Myths by Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire (NYRB, 2017)

norse myths

Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire, preface by MICHAEL CHABON

Fifty years ago, the Caldecott medal-winning d’Aulaires first published their beautifully illustrated introduction to Norse mythology. In the captivating pages of D’Aulaires’ Book of Norse Myths, children will find stories of Odin the All-father, Thor the Thunder-god and the theft of his hammer, Loki the mischievous god of the Jotun Race, Bragi the god of poetry, the famous Valkyrie maidens, as well as other gods, goddesses, heroes, and giants. With this classic book, the wondrous world of Norse folklore will stay with children for a lifetime.

“The interest in mythology that was kindled by [the d’Aulaires’ books] has endured throughout my life, and has directly influenced my own writing in countless ways…The Norse book was always my favorite, though. I must have read it a dozen times at least by the time I was nine or ten.”
—Michael Chabon

“Beautifully written and dazzlingly illustrated…[it] represents the pinnacle of the d’Aulaires’ achievement as storytellers and artists.”
The New York Times Book Review


: An interview with Duane Swierczynski

imagesWelcome back, Duane. It’s a pleasure see you again on my blog. Our last interview was in 2009, when you went to Italy maybe with your only novel published here “Uccidere o essere uccisi” Severance Package (St. Martin’s Press, 2008). It had been very well received, especially by the experts. I remember enthusiastic reviews to the book. That experience was to be published in Italy?

I’m a quarter Italian (on my father’s side), so it was a thrill to be published in Italy! The only thing that struck me as strange was the cover, which featured a man in an animal costume holding a shotgun. There are no shotguns in the novel, and there are no animal costumes. Artistic license, maybe? I just hope that Italian readers had fun with it. Continue reading

: Book Review – The Jealous Kind by James Lee Burke, (Simon & Schuster, 2016)

cover88521-mediumPub Date 30 Aug 2016
Simon & Schuster
The Jealous Kind
by James Lee Burke
Literary Fiction


From New York Times bestselling author James Lee Burke—an atmospheric, coming-of-age story set in 1952 Texas, as the Korea War rages.
On its surface, life in Houston is as you would expect: drive-in restaurants, souped-up cars, jukeboxes, teenagers discovering their sexuality. But beneath the glitz and superficial normalcy, a class war has begun, and it is nothing like the conventional portrayal of the decade. Against this backdrop Aaron Holland Broussard discovers the poignancy of first love and a world of violence he did not know existed.
When Aaron spots the beautiful and gifted Valerie Epstein fighting with her boyfriend, Grady Harrelson, at a Galveston drive-in, he inadvertently challenges the power of the Mob and one of the richest families in Texas. He also discovers he must find the courage his father had found as an American soldier in the Great War.
Written in evocative prose, The Jealous Kind may prove to be James Lee Burke’s most encompassing work yet. As Aaron undergoes his harrowing evolution from boy to man, we can’t help but recall the inspirational and curative power of first love and how far we would go to protect it.

Continue reading