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Monday, November 24, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 40.0° F  Light Drizzle
The Daily

BOOKS

A conversation with physicist Michio Kaku

Physicist Michio Kaku of the City University of New York studies string field theory at his day job. He's also written a series of books aimed at a general audience that aim to explain the real mind-blowing aspects of physics -- worm holes, parallel universes, hyperspace. In his latest, Physics of the Impossible he explores the physics behind all the neat sci-fi stuff that's normally dismissed as impossible, like invisibility, UFOs, psychokinesis, and time travel. >More
 Laura Rider's Masterpiece shows a new side of Jane Hamilton

Wisconsin writer Jane Hamilton has an admitted penchant for doom-and-gloom subjects: the drowning of a child, adultery and traumatic brain injury have all been major plot points in her novels. Yet Hamilton also possesses a sharp wit, which she allows free rein in her sixth book, Laura Rider's Masterpiece, out this week from Grand Central Publishing. >More
 A Book a Week: The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by Kate Summerscale

Early versions of crime and mystery stories were appearing in Scotland and England in the late 1840s, and Edgar Allan Poe created the first fictional detective, Auguste Dupin, in 1841 in The Murders in the Rue Morgue. But it was England's national obsession with the Road Hill House murder that really got the ball rolling. >More
 UW Press sells quality as the publishing industry changes

The e is italic and lower-case. It hovers over the shallow vee of an open book, as if floating up off the middle pages. Smaller than a thumbnail, this icon appears with 19 titles in the spring 2009 University of Wisconsin Press catalog. It represents the availability of a title in digital ebook format. It also signifies the opportunities the UW Press is pursuing amid the contractions and growing complexities confronting the book-publishing industry. >More
 A Book a Week: When Will There Be Good News? by Kate Atkinson

I have a crush on Kate Atkinson. Her books are so clever, so original, so unexpected. They crackle with wit and sparkle with insight. Her characters live on in your head, continuing to make their mordant observations for months after you have finished reading about them. I just can't get enough of them, and like a good relationship, the longer I have known Atkinson, the better she gets. >More
 Agate Nesaule writes a first novel

"Anna had always insisted that her students make distinctions between author and character, life and books, truth and lies," writes Madison author Agate Nesaule in her debut novel, In Love With Jerzy Kosinski, just released from the Terrace Books imprint of the University of Wisconsin Press. >More
 A Book a Week: Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer by Jane Brocket

Did you ever think up a good idea but do nothing with it, only to discover later that someone else not only had that same idea, but acted on it, thereby making some money and getting some attention in the bargain? How maddening! That is what happened to me with Cherry Cake and Ginger Beer by Jane Brocket. >More
 A conversation with Natalie Goldberg

Natalie Goldberg burst onto the nascent creativity scene in 1986 with her book Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within, which exhorted would-be writers to banish destructive self-editing processes and just get writing. >More
 Kevin Henkes collaborates with wife Laura Dronzek on picture book Birds

"I wrote it, I guess, as a gift for her," says Kevin Henkes, the award-winning and prolific local author of children's picture books and young-adult novels. Her being his wife, Laura Dronzek, and it being Birds, the couple's new collaboration. >More
 Madison atheist Dan Barker writes a definitive refutation of religion in Godless

Though I haven't read all the recent tomes on the subject (Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, etc.), I doubt there's ever been a more devastating critique of religion in general and Christianity in particular than Godless, a new book by Madison resident Dan Barker. Why is it, then, that I feel there's something fundamentally (pun intended) sad about this book? And why has my own concept of God survived intact? >More
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