rmarsocci@northshire.com's blog

In the Land of Men: A Memoir by Adrienne Miller - Book Review

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$28.99
ISBN: 9780062682413
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Published: Ecco - February 11th, 2020

Adrienne Miller's mid-'90s' arrival in the literary "land of men" was met mostly with cynicism, for how young she was, how attractive, and how she came just out of college, a reaction she does not much dispel in this memoir. What Miller does argue, though, is the attitudes with which the other, very male editors at GQ and Esquire regard her, and how that devolves when her job becomes to work entirely at the behest of David Foster Wallace's brilliant madness. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


The Death of Jesus by J. M. Coetzee - Book Review

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The Death of Jesus: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9781984880901
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Published: Viking - May 26th, 2020

All the boy, David, ever wanted, through each of Coetzee’s Jesus books, was to be recognized, but it is only after he has died young in this, the trilogy’s final tale, that his adoptive parents begin to see him. Still, though, and as with the series' first two titles, they can only make out the visible, how he stood so much taller than every other boy; how he always remained aware he was an orphan; and how he enjoyed a fascination with the Don Quixote parables by which he grew, and which, as Coetzee's trilogy ends, become David's legacy. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


Exile Music: A Novel by Jennifer Steil - Book Review

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Exile Music: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525561811
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Published: Viking - May 5th, 2020

A novel composed in six movements, Exile Music counterpoints the familiar Nazi dissonant march across its viewpoint character’s Viennese childhood, with her musical Jewish family’s breathtaking escape to La Paz, The Peace, high up in the Bolivian Andes. At once operatic and symphonic, this fiction resists its own inherent violence and hopeful sentimentality, Steil scoring instead an intimate aria she attunes to how the refugees live their community. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? by Bill McKibben - Book Review

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Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out? Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9781250256850
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Published: Holt Paperbacks - January 21st, 2020

Unlike with sporting events, the “human game” has no clear end point, so in Falter, Bill McKibben positions the game’s environmental, economic, and political components as crises we currently face, at once a eulogy for and a plea that we all might play out this game as individual people and as members of the human community, and so every one of us can win. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


The Indispensable Composers: A Personal Guide by Anthony Tommasini - Book Review

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The Indispensable Composers: A Personal Guide Cover Image
$20.00
ISBN: 9780143111085
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Published: Penguin Books - November 5th, 2019

Whether played symphonic, sung operatic, or danced to, music spirits the sole space wherein people may wholly occupy the present. From Monteverdi and Mozart, through Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms, to modernism’s Bartok, New York Times music critic Anthony Tommasini provides a “personal guide” through such presence as seventeen classical composers have scored, profiling them, their art, and the 400-year history their genius has scaled. ~ Reviewed by Ray Marsocci


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