This is no ordinary book. A ``spiritual companion'' to Remembering the Bone House (1989), it continues Mairs's intensely personal interior journey as it explores issues of faith and social conscience with edgy honesty and poise. Most often, Mairs begins, religious belief is something you keep to yourself, but, in any case, life forces the construction of a moral sense, however haphazard its defining moments. The author's own convictions evolved gradually, along with a creeping feminism, until both she and husband George left behind the comfortable shelter of Protestant childhood labels and celebrated a Mass marking their conversion to Catholicism. Now they belong to the Community of Christ of the Desert and pursue the social-justice commitment articulated by Leonardo Boff, making political choices independent of official Church policy. Theirs is a spiritual quest, a profound collaboration, a willed engagement with people in need: ``God was here, and the law was unembellished: take care of each other.'' Mairs's theology is by no means traditional, with unusual references to God (``she,'' always) and a stance that's ``both pro- choice and anti-abortion,'' but her expression of religious belief is a powerful statement presented, as in previous books, in the context of family history and ongoing calamity—George's third bout with melanoma, her own increased physical deterioration from MS. Surpassing earlier efforts, she writes with extraordinary grace of ``memory's malarial tenacity,'' of ``the passionate tenderness children evoke'' in their caregivers, or of the approach of death as ``a kind of conversion experience.'' Consoling and poignant: a Catholic feminist moral inquiry that resists New Age simplifications and shares its message of deep faith with courage and dignity.

Pub Date: May 19, 1993

ISBN: 0-8070-7056-4

Page Count: 245

Publisher: Beacon Press

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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