Month: June 2012

  • A lot of fun, with fringe benefits

    Paul O’Connor reports that while the temperatures have been up around 103 degrees in North Carolina, the highs have been in the low 70s in Portland, Ore., where he’s visiting. Maybe that’s why he has energetically written another book review, putting me to shame. I’ve been reading and listening, but not doing much writing. I’m […]

  • Have we come to this?

    Every summer, Paul O’Connor sets out driving across the country, writing vignettes along the way. This year, he took a supply of audio books with him. Many he has liked, some not so much. I must say after reading this review that I think Paul enjoys panning a book more than he enjoys praising one. […]

  • Of Ireland, and the importance of stories

    Fittingly for the first day of summer – and a scorcher – here’s a warm welcome to Tom Dillon, whose first contribution to Briar Patch Books is posted here. Tom is a veteran journalist and all-around good guy. By Tom Dillon THE LAST STORYTELLER: A NOVEL OF IRELAND. By Frank Delaney. Random House. 385 pages. […]

  • Gems of insight, writing

    It’s summer – almost – so Bob Moyer is off on a road trip on his Harley. But, fortunately, he’s had time to send us a review of a book that offers a more sedentary way to sample what America has to offer. By Robert Moyer PULPHEAD. By John Jeremiah Sullivan. Farrar, Straus, and Giroux. […]

  • At home in America

    Got a long driving trip ahead of you? Just like to relax and let somebody tell you stories? Briar Patch Books looks at an audio book that’s a marvelous, poignant family saga that will tug at your emotions and enrich your life. By Linda C. Brinson A GOOD AMERICAN. By Alex George. Read by Gibson […]

  • Good read, good ending

    Paul O’Connor and I were working together on the Winston-Salem Journal’s editorial pages at the time of the Sept. 11 attacks. Paul has read a lot about the circumstances that led up to the attacks and the findings of the 9/11 Commission. I was interested to read his review of this book about how, 10 […]