The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale By Miriam R. Kramer We are reprinting my column from July 2017 in advance of my future review of Margaret Atwood’s much-awaited sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, The Testaments. My prediction two years ago was correct: the Hulu TV series The Handmaid’s Tale went on to win Outstanding Drama Series and Elisabeth […]

The Nickel Boys

The Nickel Boys By Miriam R. Kramer Two years ago Whitehead authored The Underground Railroad, a retelling of history in which the passage north for African-American slaves was a real railroad. In plumbing our racial history, he created a symbolic work with surrealist touches reminiscent of William Faulkner and Ralph Ellison. Winning the 2017 Pulitzer […]

Intrigue and Enchantment

Intrigue and Enchantment By Miriam R. Kramer What’s next, a plague of locusts? Following a record rainfall and flash floods in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, temperatures and high humidity recently combined to create a heat wave up the East Coast with a real feel of about 110°F in DC and Old Town Alexandria. If […]

Fun Summer Reads

Last Word By Miriam R. Kramer Fun Summer Reads As Old Town, Alexandria and the DC metropolitan area start getting sleepy, vacationers and “staycationers” are seeking reading to take them away. Here is a list of escapist possibilities, both recent releases and a few classics. After all the hype from this spring’s final season, we […]

The Class Clown of Radio

The Class Clown of Radio By Miriam R. Kramer Ever since I was aware that he existed, Howard Stern has turned me off. As an avid fan of Late Night with David Letterman in the 80s, I’d see him come on the show as an edgy, juvenile loudmouth. In the early 90s I had a […]

The Flowers of Yesteryear

The Flowers of Yesteryear By Miriam R. Kramer In her debut novel, Lilac Girls, and its recently released prequel, Lost Roses, author Martha Hall Kelly tells the story of resilient women torn apart by the conflicts and revolutions in twentieth-century Europe, and how they unite to flower together in an unexpected fashion. When the winds […]

The Border

The Border By Miriam R. Kramer Despite weighing in at a walloping 716 pages, Don Winslow’s The Border explodes off the mark like a doped-up Olympic sprinter. The final installment in a trilogy covering the United States’ War on Drugs, The Border picks up where The Cartel and The Power of the Dog leave off […]

The Kids Are Alright

The Kids Are Alright Miriam R. Kramer Do you have a middle–schooler who loves hiking and rock-climbing but doesn’t like to read? Or a grandchild interested in nature, science, geography, technology, and the environment? Or a son or daughter who loves videogames and puzzles? Trudi Trueit’s Explorer Academy: The Nebula Secret is fast-paced adventure to […]

In Honor of Mary Oliver

In Honor of Mary Oliver By Miriam R. Kramer “If I have any lasting worth, it will be because I have tried to make people remember what the Earth is meant to look like.” As this issue goes to press, the beloved poet Mary Oliver has passed away at age 83. Winner of the National […]

Visionary, Guru, Father

Visionary, Guru, Father by Miriam R. Kramer In the captivating, superbly told authorized biography Steve Jobs, released weeks after Jobs’ death from pancreatic cancer in 2011, Walter Isaacson concisely delineates the rise of his mercurial, narcissistic subject, the global visionary who changed the world in part by exalting gorgeously simple technological design that any customer […]