THE FEEL OF SILENCE

With exasperation, humor, and occasional bitterness, an assertive, high-achieving, profoundly deaf woman recounts her lifelong struggle to fit into the hearing world. Tucker, who does not know sign language but lip-reads with expertise and speaks with clarity, spent more of her life denying her deafness than acknowledging it. Opting to live in the mainstream of society rather than in the deaf (or Deaf, as they prefer it) cultural community, she experiences the frustrations and rewards of that ``self-created limbo.'' Tucker divides her life into three periods: child and student; wife and mother; lawyer, law professor, and grandmother. Amazingly, she says that she never discussed her deafness with her parents or brothers while she was growing up, nor with her husband or children during the 17 years of her marriage. Her descriptions of the difficulties she faced raising children are fascinatingwhen her husband worked nights, for example, she trained herself to wake at 30-minute intervals to check on her childrenas are her accounts of life as a litigation attorney, a career in which she was apparently a smashing success. (In the courtroom an interpreter would mouth what was being said by others so that Tucker could follow the proceedings.) After failing to become a court of appeals judge, she joined Arizona State University as a professor of law. Now an expert on disability rights, Tucker seems to accept her deafness. Yet in her final pages she hedges: ``I am a deaf person, yes. But I think and communicate as a hearing person. I am a hearing person with limitations.'' Those on both sides of the question of how to educate deaf childrenoralism versus signwill find fuel here. What is clear is that the costs and the benefits of either path can be enormous.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 1995

ISBN: 1-56639-351-5

Page Count: 210

Publisher: Temple Univ. Press

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1995

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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MOMOFUKU MILK BAR

With this detailed, versatile cookbook, readers can finally make Momofuku Milk Bar’s inventive, decadent desserts at home, or see what they’ve been missing.

In this successor to the Momofuku cookbook, Momofuku Milk Bar’s pastry chef hands over the keys to the restaurant group’s snack-food–based treats, which have had people lining up outside the door of the Manhattan bakery since it opened. The James Beard Award–nominated Tosi spares no detail, providing origin stories for her popular cookies, pies and ice-cream flavors. The recipes are meticulously outlined, with added tips on how to experiment with their format. After “understanding how we laid out this cookbook…you will be one of us,” writes the author. Still, it’s a bit more sophisticated than the typical Betty Crocker fare. In addition to a healthy stock of pretzels, cornflakes and, of course, milk powder, some recipes require readers to have feuilletine and citric acid handy, to perfect the art of quenelling. Acolytes should invest in a scale, thanks to Tosi’s preference of grams (“freedom measurements,” as the friendlier cups and spoons are called, are provided, but heavily frowned upon)—though it’s hard to be too pretentious when one of your main ingredients is Fruity Pebbles. A refreshing, youthful cookbook that will have readers happily indulging in a rising pastry-chef star’s widely appealing treats.    

 

Pub Date: Oct. 25, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-307-72049-8

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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