Entertainment & Sports Book Reviews (page 303)

Released: March 1, 1996

"Kammen makes the middle-of-the-road Seldes into a middleman of cultural criticism, but he remains too weak a figure to support the ambitious scope of Kammen's cultural criticism. (25 b&w photos and illustrations, not seen)"
With a career spanning the period from the Jazz Age to the Information Age, critic Gilbert Seldes provides a sizable canvas, but it's still a stretch to see it as reflecting all the multitudinous changes in modern American culture. Read full book review >
STAN GETZ by Donald L. Maggin
Released: March 1, 1996

"Definitive in its documentation of Getz's career but less successful as an analysis of Getz's art. (25 b&w photos, not seen)"
Maggin (Bankers, Builders, Knaves, and Thieves: The $300 Million Scam at ESM, 1989) essays a definitive biography of the tenor sax great. Read full book review >

REQUIEM LETTERS by Ronald Senator
Released: March 1, 1996

"That Senator concludes with a letter to Dita about his glitzy new life with his sexy new wife (whom he met just three months after Dita's death) merely heightens one's sense of having taken an unpleasant journey in bad company."
A disturbing real-life tale, made more chilling by this ill- wrought account. Read full book review >
CHARLES IVES by Jan Swafford
Released: March 1, 1996

"A conscientious, intellectually honest sifting of the plentiful evidence, though undoubtedly not the last word on its subject."
A decent, thoughtful, and idealistic biography of American music's radical idealist. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 16, 1996

"Filled with love for the theater, ably conveyed to the reader."
A thoughtful, enjoyable collection from critic and theatrical biographer Lahr (Dame Edna Everage and the Rise of Western Civilisation, 1992, etc.). Read full book review >

Released: Feb. 15, 1996

"An intelligent reappraisal of an important but undervalued period of film history. (175 b&w and 16 color illustrations)"
A well-detailed examination of the early cinema, from the magic lantern to the watershed year of 1913. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 14, 1996

"One hopes that other historians will follow McDannell's bold lead and attend to this neglected aspect of religious expression. (100 b&w photos and 24 color plates, not seen)"
A groundbreaking, impressively researched, and kitsch-filled exploration of how Americans' sacred ``stuff'' both shapes and reflects their religious beliefs. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 14, 1996

"He just goes fishin' and enjoys telling about it."
Magazine writer Thomas's fly-fishing pieces are ``written more from the perspective of Alice in Wonderland than Joe Brooks.'' Which is to say, he skips lightly over the technical claptrap and gets right to the fun of fishing and the joys of the great outdoors. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 13, 1996

"But he's totally on time when it comes to great art, and in a critical idiom that's his all alone."
For those unlucky readers who've missed such singularly American books as The Omni-Americans (1970) and Stomping the Blues (1976), Murray has collected his most recent essays from largely obscure sources and assembled another world-beating prose obbligato—necessary for the times by virtue of its transcendent aesthetics. Read full book review >
ALAN JAY LERNER by Edward Jablonski
Released: Feb. 9, 1996

"However, he relies on the standard literature in retelling Lerner's life, barely moving beyond a handful of well-known sources for further insights. (32 b&w photos, not seen)"
Serviceable biography of a noted Broadway and film lyricist/librettist. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 8, 1996

"Along with Final Cut and The Devil's Candy, one of cinema's great cautionary tales. (First serial to Esquire)"
Despite the lame, misleading title, a wry, even occasionally useful, real-life satire on low-low-budget moviemaking. Read full book review >
VAMP by Eve Golden
Released: Feb. 1, 1996

"The author does make an effort to situate Bara in her historical context, but too often she settles for a superficial rehashing of film history commonplaces. (124 b&w photos, not seen)"
Golden, author of a well-received bio of Jean Harlow (Platinum Girl, 1991), inaugurates this new imprint with a trip even farther back into film history to examine the career of silent sex goddess Theda Bara. 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 >