Book Review: From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler 1

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg When I was a kid one of my favorite movies was called The Hideaways. It played regularly on cable and when it was on I would watch it with keen interest not on the story of a girl and her brother who decide ...

Returning Home to Real Life 2

Returning Home to Real Life
Our last few days in China dragged. I wrote about the adoption reality show, and lamented that all any of us wanted was to get home and start our lives together. Still, one thing that is nice about being in a place like that, about living out of hotels and having your life reduced to ...

Art research; or, what happened to that painting by Veronese? 2

I’m doing research on paintings in the Louvre in 1911, specifically the paintings that were hanging in the Salon Carré that year. I found several paintings depicting the paintings that might have been hanging in the Salon Carré around that time, including this gem by Castiglione painted in 1860: And this view of the room ...

Why do you do this? The Stone Mill 50 Mile Race Recap 1

“Can I ask you a question?” The speaker was the grandmother of a fellow Stone Mill 50 Mile racer. She had come out to cheer on her granddaughter and was sitting in the elementary school cafeteria watching the carnage of runner after runner hobbling into the building. She wore a red sweater and her blue ...

Remove the carpet, remove the problem 2

Remove the carpet, remove the problem
It was a weekend of sweat producing, labor intensive house work. After spending all day Saturday moving and rebuilding a (better) playset for m, I spent Sunday producing even more sweat as I laid a new floor in my office. For the past years—since we moved into the house—we have had a problem with cat ...

It’s a drug like any other. 1

It's a drug like any other.
The book tour is drawing to its inevitable conclusion, and as it does I find myself back where it began: Duluth. I’m sitting in the Duluth Coffee Company, drinking a cup of Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Adado naturally dried coffee, which is by far the best cup of coffee I have ever had. Smooth and well balanced ...

A most difficult thing 1

A most difficult thing
I just had to do one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do: I hugged my wife and daughter goodbye and put them on a plane home while I got back in the car and drove away. They came out this weekend, arriving on Friday night, to join me for a couple ...

First Book Store Events 1

First Book Store Events
I had never heard of the Book World stores before I had events scheduled in them. The first was in a small town near the South Dakota border called Detroit Lakes. The store was on the main strip in town, Washington Avenue. When we arrived a wind whipped from the south, blowing cold air through ...

Trail Run—Finally 1

Trail Run—Finally
Four days into the Minnesota Book Tour and I finally got the chance to run on those famed Minnesota trails. I spent the night in Baxter/Brainerd last night, a place I know mostly from the movie Fargo. (“You know, Babe the blue ox? You betcha!”) This morning was the first morning since we arrived that ...

Book tour begins 1

Book tour begins
My excitement has grown the past few days as the book tour dates approach. On Thursday, I was interviewed by the Rochester Post-Bulletin in advance of my appearance at the Barnes & Noble in the Apache Mall on October 9th. The interview, my first for the book, went well. Tom Weber asked some insightful and ...