The Girl on the Train and Other Unreliable Narrators

Source: flickr, dr_john2005

Paula Hawkins' debut novel, The Girl on the Train, is a hit. Readers and critics alike appear to love Hawkins' gripping psychological thriller. With some incredibly satisfying plot twists and an unreliable narrator to keep things interesting, it's shaping-up to be this season's Gone Girl, and I have noticed engrossed readers toting this book around everywhere. An […]

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Malcolm X on the Anniversary of His Death

Malcolm X

Like his father and three uncles—and countless others who have spoken up for justice—Malcolm X was assassinated. He was killed 50 years ago at age 39 on February 21, 1965, while giving a talk at the Audubon Ballroom in New York City—just one week after his house was bombed. Malcolm is known to most as […]

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“Miracle on Ice” 35th anniversary

ice hockey skate, stick and puck

It's hard to believe, but on February 22, it will be 35 years since the historic "Miracle on Ice" game unfolded at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. As an avid hockey fan, it still boggles my mind that a bunch of college kids, led by Coach Herb Brooks, was able to beat […]

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Read Tomorrow’s African American Classics Today

Author Percival Everett Source: elenatore, Flickr

Long before African American History Month was widely celebrated, my third-grade teacher brought African American history to life and into the classroom. I still remember him standing us in a circle and teaching us “Lift Every Voice and Sing," the Black National Anthem. (Thank you, Mr. Ruff!) I still celebrate African American History Month—these days […]

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Organize Your Stuff, Reduce Your Stress

organized shelves and desk

If you're anything like me, you begin the new year with the best of intentions. As we're already well into the new year, I'm wondering, how are those New Year's resolutions going? I stopped making official New Year's resolutions a long time ago. There are just too many expectations left unfulfilled and too much pressure. That […]

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Women Entertainers and the Civil Rights Movement

Nina Simone 1

If you're looking for heroes of the civil rights movement, there are the usual suspects, the names that everyone knows: King, Shuttlesworth, Abernathy, etc. But how about the people who were heroes a little more indirectly? Those who were heroes for other reasons, but lent their fame to the cause? I speak of the entertainers. Lena Horne, Nina […]

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Travels for Armchair Detectives

armchair and books 2

What with the recent blizzard and subsequent cold snap, most people prefer to be indoors this time of year. If you like mysteries and are fantasizing about being somewhere warm and exotic, never fear: the Scandinavians haven't cornered the market on mysteries in foreign lands. Tarquin Hall writes a charming series set in New Delhi, India. Vish (sounds like […]

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Sweet Treats for Your Vegan Valentine

Vegan cupcakes

The new millennium has brought us many new and wondrous advances in civilization, not the least of which is a sugary explosion of luscious, vegan baked goods. Vegan baking used to evoke memories of your hippie aunt's rock-hard bran muffins. Then in 2006 a cookbook called Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World took over the (vegan) […]

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That’s Love (and Marriage) Baby!

Man's and woman's feet clad in dancing shoes

Famous couples often only need one name each—Anthony and Cleopatra, Scott and Zelda, Bogart and Bacall—but what do we really know about their story? What's it like to have a famous spouse, or to live your life in the spotlight or be at the center of history? Here are some power couples as they appear in fiction. Above […]

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Literary Anti-Heroes

silhouette near tunnel

The skies are dark, hope is lost, corruption reigns, and those few bright lights willing to fight back are sure to be betrayed by their closest allies, or their own frail nature. Enter the anti-hero, a lone wolf just a shade better than the desperate souls that surround her, as contrary and complicated as your average […]

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