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Volume I, Issue 30
December 29 - January 5, 1998

Non-fiction
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1997's Best Non-fiction
1997's non-fiction featured both strong and fond recollections. [5]
Charles Taylor

Commodities, Cash And Christmas
In "Consumer Rites: The Buying and Selling of American Holidays," historian Leigh Eric Schmidt tells us just how Christmas came to be such a commercialized morass. [6]
Gregory McNamee

Reader, Heal Thyself
What can crushed yak backbone do for you? [7]
Stephen Ausherman

Language: The Final Frontier
"The Star Trek Encyclopedia" is like something out of a Jorge Luis Borges tale. [8]
James DiGiovanna

Feel Lucky, Punk?
A new volume pulls together the scraps of punk rock's golden days in L.A. [9]
Greg Petix

Be Like Julia
Reviews of "Appetite for Life: The Biography of Julia Child" and "A Woman's Place Is in the Kitchen." [10]
Virginia B. Wood


Mini Reviews
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Speed Reader

  • "Holidays on Ice" by David Sedaris
  • "Tequila Mockingbird" by Paul Bishop
  • "Lucky You" by Carl Hiaasen
  • "Barbary Stone" by Norman Mailer


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eems everybody's got a Top Ten list to share this week. You'll find plenty of them over in the Film & TV and Music sections, and we've got one or two here, as well. Funny, I thought we were done with lists for a while after all the Christmas-gift recommendation articles. Not so. Lists are the reason for the season.

Plenty of other literary latticework can be found in these pages, including telling interviews with hard-boiled crime novelist Donald E. Westlake and over-easy historical novelist Diana Gaboldon. These are the sorts of interviews with as much to offer aspiring writers as readers, since they probe into many of the nitty-gritty details of the craft.

We've also got reviews of non-fiction works about such enticing subjects as holiday consumerism, Tibetan healing, the world of Star Trek, the L.A. punk scene, and gourmet chef Julia Child. Dig in!


Fiction
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1997's Best Fiction
1997's best fiction was a blend of new and venerable voices. [2]
Elizabeth Manus, Editor

No Prozac for the Wicked
An interview with crime fiction legend Donald Westlake. [3]
Jesse Sublett

Dyed-in-the-Wool Fan
The historical fiction of Diana Gaboldon. [4]
Virginia B. Wood


Now What?
Love to read? Need some clever ideas? Our library of resources and staff picks are guaranteed to turn on plenty of mental light bulbs via your electrified eye sockets. [12]


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