Books

 “And So It Goes” Charles J. Shields Henry Holt, $30 “Kurt Vonnegut: Novels & Stories, 1963-1973” Edited by Sidney Offit Library of America, $35

Poets Pack a Gallery     It’s billed as a Valentine’s Day reading of poems — but loosely. The day, Saturday, is after the fact, and the definition of a love poem has been expanded to include, for example, a love...
Look Ahead, Writers     February on eastern Long Island. It can seem like the calendar’s equivalent of 3 a.m., when nothing good happens, not even snow. But using the down time to plan for better days — how about July...
    Out this week in paperback, Helen Schulman’s “This Beautiful Life” is a highly contemporary tale of woe. The novel looks at how a family manages and fails to manage in the grip of a thoroughly distressing...

“Elizabeth and Hazel” David Margolick Yale University Press, $26  

“Pushcart Prize XXXVI” Edited by Bill Henderson Pushcart Press, $18.95 Now in its 36th year, the annual Pushcart Prize anthology, “Best of the Small Presses,” has become a standard title for anyone interested in a...

    Now in its 36th year, the annual Pushcart Prize anthology, “Best of the Small Presses,” has become a standard title for anyone interested in a sampling of who or what is happening in contemporary American literature.

“My Dyslexia” Philip Schultz W.W. Norton, $21.95

    If New York’s Gilded Age had once appeared to be gently disappearing into the pages of the history books, the last few years, laden with financial malfeasance, Wall Street greed, burgeoning poverty, and an ever-increasing...

“Kayak Morning” Roger Rosenblatt Ecco, $13.99     Last year was the year of the grief memoir. Joyce Carol Oates’s “A Widow’s Story” concerns the loss of her husband. Meghan O’Rourke...

“The Last Whaler” Nicholas Stevensson Karas AuthorHouse, $25     When I checked my morning mail several months ago, I was surprised by a large mystery envelope. I was delighted to see it contained a local historical...

    Another year . . . and another totally subjective list of my favorite books of the year. As ever, it is a personal list, and one that totally leans toward my own sensibilities. And yet I can’t imagine a reader picking up...

“Portrait of Long Island”     When it comes to gift-giving, books are all well and good as gestures, but, let’s face it, they almost always go unread. This is where the picture book comes in —...