Some of the greatest examples of American literature are the writings of Mark Twain. Drawing from his books, speeches, letters, interviews, and various other sources, author Mark Dawidziak has compiled thought provoking examples of Twain's trademark wit and wisdom in his new book (with the extremely long title) Mark Twain's Guide to Diet, Exercise, Beauty, Fashion, Investment, Romance, Health and Happiness.
Homer Hickam, the author of Rocket Boys which was made into the movie October Sky, tells the story of his parents’ early marriage with humorous and fanciful embellishments in the novel Carrying Albert Home. Albert is an alligator. Hickam’s mother Elsie visited her uncle in Florida after graduating from high school, and she met Buddy Ebsen (who later became a famous actor) when his family had a dance studio in Orlando.
No one knew comedienne Joan Rivers better than her daughter Melissa. In her book, The Book of Joan: Tales of Mirth, Mischief, and Manipulation, Melissa Rivers shares stories and life lessons from her life shared with her mother and father, Edgar Alfred Rosenberg. Most people either loved or hated Joan, and, if you thought she said some outrageous things to her audiences as a comedian, you won't believe what she said and did in private. Not a fan? You may change your mind about her as the book reveals a completely other side to this comedic icon.
Bestseller Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal is a good novel for foodies and for people who are familiar with the Twin Cities. If you like food—church basement suppers, high-end locally sourced gourmet ingredients, or county fair bake-off bars—this is a tasty treat. If you are familiar with the Twin Cities you will enjoy references to St. Paul’s Farmer’s Market, First Avenue, Loring Park, and Seward Co-op.
Last Bus to Wisdom is a charming, funny, heartwarming, and autobiographical novel set mainly in Montana and briefly in Manitowoc. Donal is an eleven-year-old orphan living in Montana with his grandmother who is a cook on the Double W ranch. In the summer of 1951, his grandmother needs surgery, and Donal is sent on the Greyhound Bus (which he calls the dog bus) to Manitowoc to stay with his Great Aunt Kate and Great Uncle Herman.
Have you ever dreamed of becoming a famous author, or maybe even written a few things of your own that was not quite bestseller material? Don't be discouraged. Writing takes work and we all have to start somewhere. Journalist and Editor Julia Scott put together a book appropriately titled Drivel in which dozens of respected, professional writers share the worst thing they have ever written. If you think your favorite author simply woke up one day and wrote a bestseller, think again.
The summer reading program is in full swing at the Fond du Lac Public Library. The theme this year is Behold! The Power of Reading. You can sign up for the program online at www.fdlpl.org, or at any of the library service desks. Anyone can participate, and it only takes a minute to sign up. It is so easy - simply mark off a circle on your reading card for every 30 minutes of reading you do. It can be reading together as a family, or reading to others. Any format of reading qualifies, even listening to audiobooks.
After publishing nonfiction books (Population 485, Coop, Visiting Tom), Wisconsin author Michael Perry has published his first novel, Jesus Cow, which just may leave you laughing out loud. His new novel is much like his previous books—full of humor, quirky characters, and some food for thought. Main character Harley Jackson is just trying to hold on to the last few acres of farmland that belonged to his family.
Have you "herd" about the new book by actor David Duchovny? If you are in the mood for some silliness, Holy Cow, Duchovny's debut novel, approaches some serious real world issues in a highly humorous manner. There's nothing overly special about the book. It is a very whimsical story about farm animals that become friends and are looking to escape the inevitability of their lives. It is light, easy, entertaining, fast paced and, at times, just plain silly.
Two senior citizens find love and danger in the driftless area around Soldiers Grove and Viroqua in Paul Zimmer’s novel The Mysteries of Soldiers Grove. This is a quick read with some humor, some serious points about growing old, and a happy ending. Told in alternate chapters by Cyril and Louise who both live at the assisted living center in Soldiers Grove. Cyril is alone in the world. He had a hard childhood with drunken parents and sought comfort in reading biographies in the encyclopedia.