Category Archives: helenshotpicks

Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli

Asterios Polyp is a self-assured, domineering, wind-bag of a paper architect. A paper architect being one “whose reputation rests on his designs, rather than on the buildings constructed from them. In fact, none of his designs had ever been built.” When … Continue reading

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Poetry and Prose – Thomas Zvi Wilson Reading Series

Tuesday, February 18th listen to locally and nationally known writers present their poetry and prose at the Central Resource Library. The Thomas Zvi Wilson Reading Series is co-sponsored by The Writers Place.In February we welcome readers from Kansas City Voices: … Continue reading

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Summerland by Elin Hilderbrand

In the vein of Laura Moriarity’s The Rest of Her Life or Chris Bojhalian’s The Buffalo Soldier, Hilderbrand puts normal, everyday people under a microscope after throwing a terrible tragedy at them. In Summerland, twins Hobby and Penny Alistair are shining stars at Nantucket High School. But on … Continue reading

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Doc by Mary Doria Russell

Before reading Doc by Mary Doria Russell, the only thing I knew about the famous Doc Holiday was that he looked remarkably like Val Kilmer and often suggested his peers might be Daisies. What a delight to read about this … Continue reading

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Dark Harvest by Norman Partridge

I freely admit it—I had to make a second, running start at Dark Harvest. But once I got past the idea that the evil presence holding the entire town captive was a pumpkin-headed boy with a butcher knife, the story … Continue reading

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I Am Legend by Richard Matheson

I picked up I am Legend when I learned that the Horror Writer’s Association had recently voted it Best Vampire Novel of the Century. First published in 1954, the only thing dated that I noticed was the records the main … Continue reading

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Spirit of the Marathon (DVD)

Spirit of the Marathon follows six runners as they prepare for and compete in the 2005 Chicago Marathon. Some are competitive runners who have placed in previous years, some are Olympic medalists, and some are regular people, just like you … Continue reading

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Hungry for Change (DVD)

Hungry for Change is not a how-to diet film. It’s a documentary melding many of the world’s leading nutritionists’ ideas about ditching the diet and getting healthy from the inside out. Using interviews of cancer survivors, formerly obese people who … Continue reading

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The Art of Running Faster: Improve Technique, Training and Performance by Julian Goater and Don Melvin

I found a lot of helpful information in The Art of Running Faster.  Like many how-to running books, I had to skim for what interested me and skip what didn’t.  I found learning about fartleks and other training strategies extremely … Continue reading

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Chick Days: Raising Chickens from Hatchlings to Laying Hens: an Absolute Beginner’s Guide by Jenna Woginrich

Even if you have no desire to ever own backyard chickens, Chick Days is wonderful fun. After making a case for keeping chickens, Woginrich describes her top ten breeds, and then illustrates the day-to-day development of three varieties of chickens. … Continue reading

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