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By Michael Pakenham | September 7, 2003
Consumer Joe: Harassing Corporate America, One Letter at a Time, by Paul Davidson. Broadway Books. 224 pages. $12.95. A professional television scriptwriter with a wry mean streak, Davidson rejiggered his persona into David Paulson and under that name challenged a battery of U.S. top corporations to grovel or make fools of themselves. His device was to write letters to the companies or top officers by name, complaining or querying about some aspect of their products or services. The answers are the heart of the book -- from Coca-Cola, with four terse paragraphs that utterly ignore the question to three letters and three responses to and from Marshmallow Fluff about microwaving the stuff.
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By Sid Smith and Sid Smith,Chicago Tribune | February 25, 2007
Somewhere: The Life of Jerome Robbins Amanda Vaill Broadway Books / 675 pages / $40 Few artists influenced Broadway or ballet as much as he did, and no one else so profoundly influenced both. Jerome Robbins conquered - and in many ways defined - both the musical and modern American ballet, a genius by nature while, by reputation, all too often an S.O.B. The gifted, troubled, complicated choreographer infamously named names during the communist witch hunt. When a dancer once blamed her lackluster performance on learning, just before curtain, that her fiance had been killed, he told her that if it had been anyone but her, that person would have been out of the show.
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NEWS
By Bill Boyarsky and Bill Boyarsky,Los Angeles Times | August 18, 1996
"Bare Knuckles and Back Rooms," by Ed Rollins. Broadway Books. 386 pages. $27.50The author, a Republican political consultant with a mouth to match his ego, has written the ultimate kiss-and-yell memoir.It's a lot like drinking with one of his breed, listening to stories that get better with each round. But as closing time nears, a thought nags at even the most alcohol-besotted brain: These stories may not be the entire truth.What elevates this book considerably above the usual political memoir is not the recounting of old battles but the insight into the mysterious and devious mind of the political manager.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Pakenham | September 7, 2003
Consumer Joe: Harassing Corporate America, One Letter at a Time, by Paul Davidson. Broadway Books. 224 pages. $12.95. A professional television scriptwriter with a wry mean streak, Davidson rejiggered his persona into David Paulson and under that name challenged a battery of U.S. top corporations to grovel or make fools of themselves. His device was to write letters to the companies or top officers by name, complaining or querying about some aspect of their products or services. The answers are the heart of the book -- from Coca-Cola, with four terse paragraphs that utterly ignore the question to three letters and three responses to and from Marshmallow Fluff about microwaving the stuff.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Craig Eisendrath and By Craig Eisendrath,Special to the Sun | April 11, 1999
"Bella Tuscany: The Sweet Life in Italy," by Frances Mayes. Broadway Books. 286 pages. $25.A year and a half after her best-selling "Under the Tuscan Sun" (Broadway Books, 1997, 697,000 books in print), Frances Mayes continues her love affair with Italy. Now in her ninth summer in Cortona, a hilltown in rural Tuscany, the poet and professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University practices her craft in rich, sensual descriptions of gourmet meals, fine wines, exquisitely planned gardens, crumbling walls, ancient churches, and the bluest skies in the world.
BUSINESS
By Sheridan Lyons and Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF | November 7, 1998
The expanded Random House Inc. facility on the edge of Westminster is poised to become the sole national distribution center for all of its titles by mid-2000."
NEWS
By Sid Smith and Sid Smith,Chicago Tribune | February 25, 2007
Somewhere: The Life of Jerome Robbins Amanda Vaill Broadway Books / 675 pages / $40 Few artists influenced Broadway or ballet as much as he did, and no one else so profoundly influenced both. Jerome Robbins conquered - and in many ways defined - both the musical and modern American ballet, a genius by nature while, by reputation, all too often an S.O.B. The gifted, troubled, complicated choreographer infamously named names during the communist witch hunt. When a dancer once blamed her lackluster performance on learning, just before curtain, that her fiance had been killed, he told her that if it had been anyone but her, that person would have been out of the show.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Molly Knight and Molly Knight,SUN STAFF | March 23, 2003
A Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson. Broadway Books. 576 pages. $26. Travel writer Bill Bryson has trekked from the Australian outback to the Appalachian Trail. In more than a dozen books, he's chronicled his trips to almost every corner of the Earth. What's left? The Earth itself. In A Short History, Bryson shares what is by far his most ambitious journey. In an effort to understand the origins of the very world he's been wandering, Bryson immersed himself in the work of some of its greatest minds -- from mathematicians and astronomers, to anthropologists and paleontologists.
NEWS
By Corey Kilgannon and Corey Kilgannon,NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | October 20, 2002
MASSAPEQUA, N.Y. - For his first day at John P. McKenna Junior High School, Al DeMeo showed up in a suit. He wore his blond hair slicked back. He was quiet and serious for a seventh-grader. Before the final bell, some eighth-grader hazed Al, knocking his books from his hand. Al pushed the upperclassman against the lockers and pummeled his face until he dropped limp to the floor. Al continued on to class without a word. No one picked on Al DeMeo again. Most of his classmates knew there was already a perfectly compelling reason not to pick on Al: His father was in the Mafia.
NEWS
By Sara Engram and Sara Engram,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | December 10, 2003
After a lengthy period of sobriety, the British actor Peter O'Toole once said, "Being sober for so many years is getting interesting." Lots of folks may opt to avoid alcoholic drinks, but that doesn't mean they have to give up fun and taste when it comes to holiday beverages. That's the premise behind The Ultimate Liquor-Free Drink Guide: More Than 325 Drinks With No Buzz But Plenty of Pizzazz, by Sharon Tyler Herbst (Broadway Books, 2002, $15). This small volume features lots of good ideas for party drinks, along with pithy observations like the one from O'Toole - all of which serve to remind us that we don't need to measure the size of the celebration by the amount of alcohol consumed.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Craig Eisendrath and By Craig Eisendrath,Special to the Sun | April 11, 1999
"Bella Tuscany: The Sweet Life in Italy," by Frances Mayes. Broadway Books. 286 pages. $25.A year and a half after her best-selling "Under the Tuscan Sun" (Broadway Books, 1997, 697,000 books in print), Frances Mayes continues her love affair with Italy. Now in her ninth summer in Cortona, a hilltown in rural Tuscany, the poet and professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University practices her craft in rich, sensual descriptions of gourmet meals, fine wines, exquisitely planned gardens, crumbling walls, ancient churches, and the bluest skies in the world.
BUSINESS
By Sheridan Lyons and Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF | November 7, 1998
The expanded Random House Inc. facility on the edge of Westminster is poised to become the sole national distribution center for all of its titles by mid-2000."
NEWS
By Bill Boyarsky and Bill Boyarsky,Los Angeles Times | August 18, 1996
"Bare Knuckles and Back Rooms," by Ed Rollins. Broadway Books. 386 pages. $27.50The author, a Republican political consultant with a mouth to match his ego, has written the ultimate kiss-and-yell memoir.It's a lot like drinking with one of his breed, listening to stories that get better with each round. But as closing time nears, a thought nags at even the most alcohol-besotted brain: These stories may not be the entire truth.What elevates this book considerably above the usual political memoir is not the recounting of old battles but the insight into the mysterious and devious mind of the political manager.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Pakenham | October 6, 2002
Caviar: The Strange History and Uncertain Future of the World's Most Coveted Delicacy, by Inga Saffron (Broadway Books, 256 pages, $23.95). Saffron first tasted more than a hint of caviar not long after arriving in 1994 as Moscow-based Russian correspondent for the Philadelphia Inquirer. She became obsessed -- as by the enormously complex history, both natural and economic -- of the salt-preserved eggs of sturgeon, one of the most primitive and grotesque of all fish. She also loved the stuff.
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