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Sunday, September 21, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 62.0° F  Mostly Cloudy
The Daily

BOOKS

Fundamental reading

For years ' 29 of them, in fact ' the Isthmus year-end book wrap-up was written by avid reader and Broom Street Theater director Joel Gersmann. His list was a departure from most year-end book picks in that he did not restrict himself to new books published within the last year. In his memory, we continue the tradition he started. >More
 Reading fare

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 Local Best Sellers

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 Fighting Son: A Biography of Philip F. La Follette

'Fighting Bob' La Follette has become such an iconic figure in Wisconsin politics that the remarkable accomplishments of his two sons have been unjustly overlooked. >More
 Beautiful dreamer

The new Charles Munch: Dreaming in Color, Paintings 1971-2006 (Trails Books) has the punch of a lavish coffee-table book, reduced to a smaller and more portable (and affordable at $20) package. >More
 Who am I?

His new book is The Discomfort Zone, a memoir in six essays. While it's taken some heat from critics, the book is whip-smart. Franzen answered a few questions via phone from New York City in advance of his appearance at the Wisconsin Historical Society (Tuesday, Nov. 28, 7 p.m.). >More
 @ the 2006 Wisconsin Book Festival

This year's Wisconsin Book Festival encompassed five days rich in literature and ideas. In a modest effort to document the fifth annual event, Isthmus has compiled a cluster of short video clips and reports that hint at the maelstrom of words and concepts swirling between Oct. 18-22 throughout Madison. >More
 Utne Reader Smiles on Wisconsin Academy Journal

The Utne Reader has nominated Wisconsin People & Ideas -- the quarterly journal of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters -- for a 2006 Utne Independent Press Award. >More
 What scares Neil Gaiman?

During his appearance with best-selling horror author Peter Straub (left) and critic Gary K. Wolfe (middle) on Sunday's panel at the Wisconsin Book Festival focusing on "Genre Fiction and the New Wave Fabulists," Neil Gaiman -- author of the novel American Gods and the acclaimed series of Sandman graphic novels -- takes a question from the audience: What frightens him? The short video follows below. >More
 Tony Grooms reads from Bombingham

In reading this passage during his Wisconsin Book Festival on Saturday, novelist Anthony Grooms offers a subtle hint of the great social, political and cultural upheavals revisited in Bombingham, his novel of the Civil Rights movement. Listen carefully to the last line, and you can hear the foreboding with which he punctuates an apparently innocent scene. The short video follows below. >More
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