Have Words–Will Write 'Em

On Books, Writers, Most Things Written, Including My Light Verse.

Archive for June, 2020

In Roddy Doyle’s “Love,” Sharing Beers — and Memories While Visiting the Pubs of Dublin, Two Men Look Back on Life”

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It takes the two men a while and a few pints for them to open up to each other. “There is a reason why men don’t talk about their feelings. It’s not just that it’s difficult, or embarrassing. It’s almost impossible. The words aren’t really there.” Ah, but in wine there is truth and in beer there is ‘drunken sense’ and the two manage to do a lot of storytelling. Joe reveals that he’s left his wife, Trish, for another woman, Jessica, whom Joe and Davy were each infatuated with more than 30 years ago.

You can read my review of Roddy Doyle’s Love in the Boston Globe by clicking the image below.

You can buy Roddy’s Doyle’s Love at Barnes & Noble.

Written by Joe Peschel

June 20th, 2020 at 3:13 pm

Posted in News

“Shakespeare in a Divided America” Considers the Tug-of-War Over the Bard

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In his introduction, Shapiro, who teaches at Columbia University, writes that it was the election of Donald Trump as president that led him to write the book. The author wrestles with the outcome of the 2016 presidential election and he even visits red states in the South, to talk with audiences about Shakespeare and “grapple with what, from inside my blue state bubble, I had failed to understand about where the country was heading.” He succeeds, however, in presenting an even-handed account of Shakespeare and American politics, though his observations, comments, and conclusions convey an unmistakably liberal viewpoint.

You can read my review of James Shapiro’s Shakespeare in a Divided America in the Christian Science Monitor by clicking the image below.

You can buy Shakespeare in a Divided America at Barnes and Noble.

Written by Joe Peschel

June 20th, 2020 at 2:57 pm

Heathcliff Redux: A Novella and Stories, by Lily Tuck

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The narrator asks Cliff if he’s ever read Wuthering Heights. Cliff says no. She, of course, has read it, and is re-reading it. As Wuthering Heights incorporates elements of Gothic and Romance fiction told in two stories, Heathcliff Redux embraces an interior story of a sort, too. ‘Redux’ is told in short chapters, sometimes as brief as a single sentence with a footnote, but ‘Redux’s’ interior ‘story’ consists of excerpts from Wuthering Heights, some of Brontë’s poems, criticism of Brontë, and it integrates elements of modern fiction with culinary elements borrowed from cozy mysteries and chic lit. Not only is there a recipe for boeuf bourguignon, but there’s the reminder to use a Bordeaux or a Burgundy for the three cups of red wine. What’s more, there’s a pithy recipe for spaghetti: boil a lot of water and add spaghetti. Isn’t that why we read fiction?

You can read my review of Lily Tuck’s Heathcliff Redux: A Novella and Other Stories by clicking the image below.


Written by Joe Peschel

June 6th, 2020 at 4:17 pm