Entertainment & Sports Book Reviews (page 291)

NON-FICTION
Released: July 1, 1998

"An exemplary piece of reporting and writing, transcending sports to give us a somber view of America's crumbling cities."
This first book by a pair of veterans of Sports Illustrated is a highly intelligent look at the colorful world of playground hoops and, with it, the ghettos that support the game. Read full book review >
A PIRATE LOOKS AT FIFTY by Jimmy Buffett
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 1, 1998

"Both Parrotheads and those with a taste for the Caribbean find something for their palates here. (Author tour)"

NON-FICTION
Released: July 1, 1998

"While the amount of detailing makes the book a sailor's dream and a lubber's chore, anyone even remotely interested in the America's Cup will find plenty of nuggets here to keep their curiosity perking. (b&w photos, not seen)"
America's Cup winner Conner (The Art of Winning, 1988) and sailing writer Levitt's history of the most visible race in sailing blends politics, rarified technology, personalities, and a healthy dose of the sport's runic patois in thorough, if prolix, fashion. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 1, 1998

"Lovingly collected, these scatterings of Davies's singular talent are typically abundant and a welcome addition to a corpus like no other in contemporary literature."
On the evidence of his immense legacy in print, the late novelist Davies was a man of profound artistic appetite; this, the second posthumous collection of his criticism, shares the exuberant and casual erudition of the first (The Merry Heart, 1997). Read full book review >
LOU HARRISON by Leta E. Miller
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 1, 1998

That this biographical study of composer, polymath, and activist Lou Harrison began as an oral history explains a lot; its cozy tone betrays long exposure not only to octogenarian Harrison himself, but also the dizzying orbit of progressive artists, musical and otherwise, with whom he has come into contact over a long and diverse career. Read full book review >

REELING IN RUSSIA by Fen Montaigne
NON-FICTION
Released: June 30, 1998

"The very stuff of footloose travel—strange companions, confounding situations, unexpected moments of fear and eye-popping wonder—told with a journalist's eye for detail. (Author tour)"
A quiet, evocative ramble through the Russian countryside by a former Philadelphia Inquirer Moscow bureau chief, who had made it his quest to fly-fish from the White Sea to Kamchatka and visit every Stalinist labor camp along the way. Read full book review >
LIGHT MY FIRE by Ray Manzarek
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 29, 1998

"Even these screeds make this pop-culture memoir more engaging. (16 pages b&w photos, not seen)"
If anyone were to write a Jim Morrison tell-all, band- and soulmate Manzarek would be the man. Read full book review >
THE MUHAMMAD ALI READER by Gerald Early
NON-FICTION
Released: June 18, 1998

"While that might be truthfully said about some of the contributions to this anthology (A. Bartlett Giamatti and Mailer offer particularly abstruse and bizarre thoughts), for the most part, this is a pleasure to read and a deserved and elegant salute to The Greatest."
Early (who also edited the recent Body Language: Writers on Sport, p. 168, etc.) compiles a formidable team of contributors to render honor to a man bigger than boxing, bigger than sports. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: June 16, 1998

"Par for the course, as golf books go."
A marginally funny exposÇ of life on the European pro golf circuit. Read full book review >
THE RIVER HOME by Jerry Dennis
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 16, 1998

"Not quite up to his earlier efforts, but Dennis's descriptive writing and his sense of fishing as serious fun keeps this one afloat. (illustrations)"
Convinced —nobody knows beans— about why fish bite, Dennis (A Place on the Water, 1993) eschews the usual nuts and bolts of fishing in favor of entertaining personal essays laced with good humor and middle-age nostalgia. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 15, 1998

"Rather less than a social history and far from comprehensive, but full of entertaining if trivial facts presented with good humor."
A lighthearted look at a fading American institution and the products found on its shelves. Read full book review >
STEPHEN SONDHEIM by Meryle Secrest
NON-FICTION
Released: June 14, 1998

"Some genuine insights into one of our living masters, but a disappointingly disorganized work with a surfeit of dollar-book Freud and Jung. (95 photos, not seen) (Literary Guild selection; author tour)"
Veteran biographer Secrest moves, logically, from Leonard Bernstein (1994) to one of his collaborators and friends—and one of the undoubted giants of the American theater—Stephen Sondheim. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >