Letters

Letters 8-18-2014

The Climate Clarified

Climate change isn’t an easy subject. A class I’m taking compared it to medicine in a way that was helpful for me: Climate scientists are like planetary physicians. Our understanding of medicine is incomplete, but what we know is useful...

Beware Non-Locally Grown

The article “Farm Fresh?” couldn’t be any more true than exactly stated. As an avid shopper at the local farm markets I want to know “exactly” what I am buying, from GMO free to organic or not organic, sprayed or not sprayed and with what...

Media Bias Must End

I wish to thank Joel Weberman for his letter “Seeking Balanced Israel Coverage.” The pro-Palestinian bias includes TV news coverage...

Proud of My President

The world is a mess. According to many conservative voices, it would not be in such a mess if Obama was not the president. I am finally understanding that the problem with our president is that he is too thoughtful, too rational, too realistic, too inclined to see things differently and change his mind, too compassionate to be the leader of a free world...

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Thursday, October 21, 2004

Dylan‘s Back Pages: Chronicles Recall the Odyssey of a Young Folksinger on the Rise

Books Robert Downes There’s an old story about a talking dog in a bar. No one remembers what the dog has to say -- what’s amazing is that a dog is talking at all.
Such is the case with Bob Dylan’s new autobiography, “Chronicles,” the first in a three-volume series that was released in early October. The marvel unveiled in the book is that for the past 44 years of his stellar career, Bob Dylan has been notoriously silent, obscure or cryptic at best on the meaning of his songs and just how he came to be arguably the greatest American songwriter of all time.
 
Thursday, October 14, 2004

The Glamour, Glory and Guardedness of Grant

Books Nancy Sundstrom Just in time for harvest season comes a bumper crop of books by and about celebrities of all sorts, from Hollywood royalty to those a little further down the feeding chain, such as Paris Hilton, Sean Astin and Tom Green.
Arguably, one can expect more from a biography spanning the four-decade career of Cary Grant than one can from Jenna Jameson’s “How to Make Love Like a Porn Star,” but one can assume caveat empteur here. It’s all a matter of taste, isn’t it? And let’s face it, don’t some of these tomes, such as the latter-mentioned above, at least intrigue a reader to pick it up in the bookstore and scan the back cover and the photos, even while hiding inside an open copy of Philip Roth’s latest?
 
Thursday, September 30, 2004

History Lesson: The Folly of Empire

Books Nancy Sundstrom As Election Day looms closer, there is no slowing of the steady stream of new books dedicated to a wide range of facets, perspectives and tales about the two candidates heading for what many believe will be one of the closest races in some time.
One of the latest of these tomes is a thoughtful, interesting and well-researched, though quite academic-minded, work by John Judis entitled “The Folly of Empire: What George W. Bush Could Learn from Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson.”
 
Thursday, September 16, 2004

The Agony and the Ecstasy of Being Committed

Books Nancy Sundstrom Summer is officially over, but that doesn’t seem tohave slowed down some solid offerings in the beach read department. In fact, one of the best of the season just rolled out in the form of Anna Maxted’s fourth novel, Being Committed.

This is the best effort yet from the English, bestselling Maxted (Getting Over It, Behaving Like Adults, Running in Heels), who has endeared readers and critics alike with her own unique blend of heartache, hope and hope, particularly as it applies to romance. Maxted has a true gift for creating endearing characters and flushing out optimism and warmth from dismal situations. These gifts as a writer have aided not only in raising her to the forefront of chick lit authors, but elevating regard and standards for the genre itself.
 
Thursday, September 9, 2004

Is 15 Minutes of Fame too Much or too Little?

Books Nancy Sundstrom Four years ago, Salon columnist and playwright Cintra Wilson wrote a book that had a title so provocative that I, along with many others, couldn’t help but pick it up and dive right in: “A Massive Swelling: Celebrity Reexamined as a Grotesque and Crippling Disease.”
Every edgy, insightful and slightly vicious moment in her non-fiction diatribe on pop culture (with observations and predictions on the likes of Michael Jackson proving to be nearly Nostradamean) made the book worth every penny and paved the way for more to look forward to in terms of why we, as individuals and a society, are pop culture junkies whom 15 minutes of fame is - well - either too much or too little, depending on your perspective. At the altar of this line of thinking, I just throw in the names of William Hung, Paris Hilton and Joey Buttafucco as a case in point.
 
Thursday, August 26, 2004

Pure Joy in the Form of Corduroy

Books Nancy Sundstrom “How many people do you have to kill before you no longer qualify as pro-life?” read a homemade sign carried by one young man.
“Stop depleting my dating pool,” read another carried by a young woman who wanted to draw attention to the U.S. military’s death toll in Iraq -- now approaching 950.
Traverse City has always been known as a Republican stronghold, but last Monday -- in what local historian Larry Wakefield termed the largest demonstration in the city’s history -- over 1,000 people gathered to protest a campaign appearance by George W. Bush.
Captain Morgan of the Traverse City Police Department estimated the crowd of demonstrators at between 1,000 and 1,500.
For hours before Bush was scheduled to speak, those with tickets to the rally (organizers say 14,000 tickets were handed out) filed into the Civic Center along a sidewalk flanked by a crowd carrying signs and energetically speaking out about the war, job loss, environmental degradation, reproductive freedom and other civil rights issues.
 
Thursday, August 19, 2004

Secret Studies -- The Hazards of Reading Lolita in Tehran

Books Nancy Sundstrom Recently released in paperback is a book that deserved more attention than it earned when it was released in hardcover late last year. The tome has the provocative title of “Reading Lolita in Tehran,” and it has been rightfully hailed by other critics as a powerful and moving merge of memoir, political commentary and literary criticism. Though it is hardly a beach read, the fact that it is now available in paperback might help bring this insightful and provocative book the audience it should have had from the onset.
 
Thursday, August 5, 2004

Burgermeister Bob Serves Up a Great Book

Books Anne Stanton Bob Sloan, perhaps one of the area’s most prolific writers, has just published a great new cookbook for burger lovers: “Great Burgers: Mouthwatering Recipes.”
 
Thursday, August 5, 2004

Kerry & Edwards: The Right Stuff on the Write Stuff

Books Nancy Sundstrom In early July, as something of a primer for last week’s viewings of the Democratic National Convention, I finally got around to reading two books that had been on my nightstand for the past few months: “Four Trials” by John Edwards and “Tour of Duty: John Kerry and the Vietnam War.”
 
Thursday, August 5, 2004

Regional Book ROUNDUP

Books Nancy Sundstrom Local authors offer everything from poetry to postcards
In our fast-paced world, sometimes the majority of us can forget about how great it really is to crack open a book. In Northern Michigan there are a number of gifted authors who have works encompassing subjects from cooking to farming to photography. This summer offers a number of new texts from area authors that deserve attention:
 
Thursday, July 29, 2004

Shadow Divers: The Deep, Blue Saga of a Watery Grave

Books Nancy Sundstrom When written with a true passion for their story, non-fiction writers can craft their works into anything as gripping, compelling and powerful as that concocted by their peers in the fiction genre. The latest in an impressive, long line of these comes from Robert Kurson, and follows in the tradition of bestsellers like “A Perfect Storm,” “Into Thin Air” and “In Harm’s Way.”
 
Thursday, July 22, 2004

Just Take those Old Records off the Shelf....

Books Nancy Sundstrom Chris Colin is a talented young writer whose work has been featured in McSweeney’s and the New York Times Book Review, among other publications, and who served a respectable tenure as a writer and editor for Salon.com. When it was announced that his first book, a work of non-fiction, would hit the stands this summer, there was a fair amount of anticipation in literary circles.
 
Thursday, July 15, 2004

Get Hold of...

Books Nancy Sundstrom A familiar theme resonates through bestsel-ling British novelist Jane Green’s sixth novel, and that is to be careful what you wish for, because you might just get it. And if you do, what happens when it looks like real life will surpass your dreams? Can you trust it? Can it last? Are things too good to be true just that?
In her latest, the delightful and still substantive “To Have and to Hold,” Alice is a shy and unpretentious woman whose life consists primarily of being a loyal friend and successful caterer who takes great pride in her work. Her needs and wants are simple, and when she attracts the attention of wealthy, dashing businessman Joe Chambers, she simply can’t believe her luck. When he asks her to marry him, she thinks she’s died and gone to heaven.
 
Thursday, July 8, 2004

A Silver-Tongued Devil Offers Details in ‘My Life‘

Books Nancy Sundstrom It was expected that former American President Bill Clinton’s highly-anticipated autobiography would be one of the hottest sellers of the summer, but wasn’t expected was exactly just how hot it would be. Though it has been on the bookshelves for just two weeks now, there is only word to describe the barometer reading for “My Life,” and that is scorching.
Too bad we can’t say that for the tome itself, but we’ll get back to that in a minute.
 
Thursday, July 1, 2004

Helen Fieldings‘ off-the-wall Imagination

Books Nancy Sundstrom In general, book reviewers tend to gravitate toward and steer other readers on to works of quality, ones that merit a solid recommendation and are worth plunking down your hard-earned dollars for or giving up spare precious time to enjoy.
 
 
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