literature

Children's Books: Poem Depot And Thomas Jefferson

Feb 21, 2014
Flickr Photo/Anne and Tim (CC BY-NC-ND)

Steve Scher talks with librarian Nancy Pearl about her latest book recommendations for children. She says she admires everything by Maira Kalman, including her new book, “Thomas Jefferson: Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Everything.”

If you're a fan of poems by Shel Silverstein or Jack Prelutsky, Pearl heartily recommends "Poem Depot: Aisles of Smiles" by Douglas Florian.

Karen Finneyfrock
Courtesy of Inti St. Clair

A  Metro bus ride inspires poet, novelist and teaching artist Karen Finneyfrock to find a delightfully surprising personification for Northwest springtime in her poem "Monster."

Cover image of Marjorie Manwaring's book
Mayapple Press

As spring edges out winter and previously bare tree limbs are suddenly effusive with blossoms, there's a sense that almost anything -- or anyone -- deserves a second chance. In her poem "A Quiet," poet Marjorie Manwaring meditates on alternative endings and the possibility of redemption.

Colleen McElroy
Photo Credit/Ingrid Papp-Sheldon

In her poem "What Stays Here," Colleen McElroy imagines life as a female soldier who must choose between loyalty to herself, and loyalty to a military code that says "keep quiet" and "get along." Like many of the poems in McElroy's ninth collection, "Here I Throw Down My Heart," (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012) the poem awakens us to voices and stories we might otherwise never hear with such intimacy and power.

A True Story Of A Slave And Master

Mar 25, 2013
Underground Railroad map
Courtesy/Wikipedia

Charles Mitchell was a teenage slave of  Washington’s surveyor general, James Tilton. In 1860, with the help of the West’s underground railroad, Charles Mitchell escaped to Victoria, British Columbia, and won his freedom. Public historian Lorraine McConaghy tells Ross Reynolds the story and discusses how she came to write her latest book, "Free Boy: A True Story of Slave and Master."

The Creative Class: Dismissed?

Mar 25, 2013
Downtown Tacoma
Flickr Photo/Scott Hingst

More than a decade ago, Richard Florida’s best-selling book, “The Rise of the Creative Class,” was a cultural phenomenon. Florida argued that young, educated, single folks would reinvent American cities. Today, Florida's critics say the wealth of the creative class hasn't trickled down to the working class. What’s the evidence? Some places, like Tacoma, used Richard Florida’s ideas as a blueprint for reinventing their downtown areas. What was the outcome? We’ll explore these ideas with journalist and geographer Joel Kotkin and Tacoma arts administrator Amy McBride.

Madeline Albright
AP Photo/Gurinder Osan

Madeleine Albright was the first woman to hold the Secretary of State position for former president Bill Clinton. She became known as an advocate for peace in the Middle East and for bringing war criminals to justice. In her new memoir, she chronicles her traumatic early life in Prague during the Nazi occupation, through the end of World War II and the beginning of the Cold War.

Rising Popularity Of Microhousing

Mar 14, 2013
apodment
Flickr Photo/Jseattle/Capitol Hill Seattle Blog

As the cost of living continues to rise in the city, people are finding it harder to find an affordable place to live. To accommodate the demand, developers are building microhousing -- tiny studio apartments with private bathrooms that share a kitchen with other units. The microhouses boast affordable living in high-demand neighborhoods such as Capitol Hill and the University District. However, residents in some neighborhoods fear the developments skirt zoning laws and create too much density too fast. City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen is considering legislation that could put new restrictions on microhousing. He joins us to explain.

Carolyne Wright
Photo Credit/Erik Rucker

It can be hard to know how to respond to tragedies on the scale of the Newtown, Conn. shooting. We want to do something, but what?

Nancy Pearl On Teen Books Adults Can Enjoy

Mar 4, 2013
KUOW Photo

Many adults loved the Harry Potter series. Of course, adults weren't the target audience. The Hunger Games and the Chronicles of Narnia were also written for young adults, and yet they developed a loyal following among the older set. What other teen books would adults enjoy? Author and regular Weekday commentator Nancy Pearl joins us with some recommendations. What are your favorites? Call us at 800-289-5869. Email weekday@kuow.org or send us a tweet @weekdayKUOW.

Breaking The Silence Around Suicide

Jan 9, 2013
Courtesy Kim Stafford

Editors' Note: This story contains descriptions of suicide. If you or someone you know might be suicidal, visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline or call 800.273.8255 (800.273.TALK).  Support groups and grief counseling for survivors can be found throughout the Puget Sound region.

Portland writer Kim Stafford has struggled to make sense out of the suicide of his brother Bret for 25 years. Though Bret was just 14 months older, Kim always looked to his brother as a leader and teacher. When he shot himself at age 40 in 1988, nobody in Bret’s family knew how much he was struggling.

Members of the Stafford family, even their father and famous poet William Stafford, couldn’t bring themselves to speak or write about Bret's loss. It was largely up to Kim Stafford to break the family silence.  Kim’s new memoir, “100 Tricks Every Boy Can Do:  How My Brother Disappeared,” is the story of his brother’s life and death and its devastating and transformational effect on Kim and his family.

Calvin Trillin
AP Photo/Richard Drew

America's deadline poet Calvin Trillin presents this talk about the 2012 presidential election -- in verse. With wry humor, Trillin discusses politics, campaigns and poetry, including the frustrating difficulty of trying to rhyme words with presidential candidate names. He spoke at Seattle's Town Hall on December 10, 2012.

Nancy Pearl
KUOW Photo

Many of us pass along books we love to family and friends. If you could only pass along one book — one you truly love — which book would it be? Librarian Nancy Pearl gives Weekday her list of books that should be passed along to loved ones.