Season of the Dragonflies by Sarah Creech

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Sarah Creech’s first novel, Season of the Dragonflies (William Morrow 2014), is a beautiful book and mesmerizing story. The story is about the Lenore women and their perfumery in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and it is, as the synopsis promises, “a beguiling tale of practical magic, old secrets, and new love.”  Continue reading

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Review of Louisiana Purchase by Elizabeth Burk

Here, in Charlotte, North Carolina, early winter is grey with rain and clouds and cold. And something about the color of the sky makes me miss Louisiana. I picked up Louisiana Purchase by Elizabeth Burk (Yellow Flag Press 2014), and while I hoped that it would quell my craving for roux-based poetry, I did not know how fully it would suit.

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Notes to a Husband by J. Bruce Fuller

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When I was reading J. Bruce Fuller’s Notes to a Husband this summer, I was also moving in with my boyfriend. And while Fuller’s chapbook is about a relationship ending, there is so much wisdom in these short notes from a wife to her husband that rather than finding a guide to ending a relationship, I found reminders of how to be fully in one. And yes, this is a composition of loss, but it’s also a guide to mindfulness.

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The Week of One Year

We are still celebrating our first year anniversary, and we know that you are just as excited as we are! No one wants to be left out of the party, so here is a recap for the late-comers of our previous week to get caught up.

Monday “The Books That Are Getting Us There”

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This time last year we began a voyage…
an exploration…
a quest…
to catalog written works. We came together to share our real-life experiences and nostalgic connections brought forth through literature.

We are the Friends of Atticus; patrons of reading and reading experiences. Continue

Tuesday “The Half-Life of Facts, Samuel Arbesman”

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Girded in Duck Tales pajamas at midday, I danced a little jig as the VCR received the VHS. After a not-so-quick rewind, a peppy melody of trombones, bassoons, and clarinets announced the triumphant entry of a man of odd proportions proudly strutting in front of a stick of a girlfriend. It did not take long before a man the size of a buffalo swooned away the odd man’s girl through acts of physical greatness, usually pushing around our hero.

There was but one course of action for Popeye. He must find his source of strength, not by the sun as does Superman or by… gamma radiation as does the Hulk (bad example). Continue

Wednesday “Friend Favorites”

One of the unique aspects that we feel Friends of Atticus provides is the opportunity to hear from different authors. As we mentioned in “The Books That Are Getting Us There”, we have collectively read 79 different books with reviews from 16 different authors. While we feel that you should probably read everyone of our reviews (they are entertaining), here are a few posts our authors have held in high esteem. Continue

“This Time Last Year: One Writer’s Beginnings”

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Early morning in mid March, I found myself driving through a neighborhood of Jackson Mississippi that openly displays its development throughout the years with a patchwork of architectural styles. Driving down Peachtree Street, one can see Tudor style houses from the early twentieth century adjacent to stucco laden art deco houses from the 1960’s. Large live oaks hang over the streets like parasols giving the illusion that the day light emits directly from the green lawns. Suddenly, the housing grid opens up to the downtown campus of Belhaven University, a quaint liberal arts college founded in the late 1800’s. Continue

Thursday “Rivers by Michael Farris Smith”

RiversImagine for a moment the devastation brought about by a particularly bad hurricane.  Imagine if, in the wake of that first hurricane, another one headed in just a few days later.  And another.  And another.  Imagine that this happened for so long, that things got so bad, the government wrote off an entire section of the country.  Imagine the kinds of people who would stay behind in a no-man’s land battered routinely by storms of ever-increasing size.  This is the world of Rivers, the remarkable debut novel from Michael Farris Smith, out next month from Simon and Schuster. Continue

The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom

One of my favorite personal belongings measures it. From the moment my eyes open, I’m consumed by it. You don’t have 5 minutes to snooze. 20 minutes in the shower, 20 for make-up, 20 for hair, 20 to pick out an outfit and get dressed. If I’m quick, maybe I can even pack my lunch today. It continues in the car, as I speak to other cars. Please quit driving so slow. Then I talk to myself. By 7:40, you should be on Germantown Parkway. If not, then you’ll be late. And it doesn’t get better once I get to work. Between waiting on the elevators, emails, meetings, daily activities, putting out fires, time (or the pressure of the lack thereof) is always driving me. I guess you could say I’m obsessed with time, as most people are. When I was younger, it couldn’t go fast enough. I can’t wait until I’m in my 20’s so I can live somewhere else, have freedom, go to college, have a career, get married, start a family. I wish time would go faster. My obsession with time grew even worse in graduate school, where I literally penciled out my entire day. I guess that should embarrass me. Even though I was extremely efficient, I do not remember feeling at peace very much. Continue reading