Maureen Corrigan appears in the following:
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
For critic Maureen Corrigan, this year's hybrid family holiday may be best celebrated by escaping into a book. Her recommendations include a kids' book about Russian Jews who identify with the Pilgrims, and a novel that contemplates class divides during wartime through the lens of a football game.
Thursday, November 07, 2013
In the many decades since the publication of How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie's self-help classic has been both celebrated and mocked, but it's still selling plenty of copies. Steven Watts' new biography of the man may feel overstuffed, but, as Maureen Corrigan notes, Carnegie's relentless positivity always shines through.
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Donna Tartt is a writer who takes her time — she's published just one novel per decade since her debut in 1992. But critic Maureen Corrigan says she'd gladly wait another 10 years for a book as extraordinary as Tartt's latest work, The Goldfinch, an "exuberantly plotted triumph."
Monday, October 21, 2013
Bridget Jones hasn't aged well. At 51, she's the "geriatric mum" of two small children, and finds herself yearning to plunge back into dating. Critic Maureen Corrigan says if you're looking for jolly feminist cultural commentary, you'd be better off reading a witty "encyclopedia of lady things" from the creators of the website Jezebel.
Wednesday, September 04, 2013
Alice McDermott's characters can often be described as average, and Marie, the heroine of her latest novel, is no exception. But critic Maureen Corrigan says the power of McDermott's writing is that she can make even Marie's run-of-the-mill life one for the record books.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
The prestigious publishing company Farrar, Straus and Giroux helped define the intellectual life of post-World War II America. Boris Kachka's book explores the company's history, from its founding in 1946 to its sale to a German conglomerate in 1994 and beyond.
Tuesday, August 06, 2013
The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P. is a debut novel about a sharp and assured young man living among young, aspiring literary types in Brooklyn. Book critic Maureen Corrigan says never before has a novel made her feel so grateful to be middle-aged.
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Maggie Shipstead mocks the pretensions of New England WASPs, while Jessica Lott executes unexpected riffs on the student-professor relationship plot. Critic Maureen Corrigan reviews two stellar fiction newcomers.
Thursday, July 18, 2013
After "Robert Galbraith" was revealed to be the pen name for J.K. Rowling, many readers have been circling back to a "debut" novel they'd initially overlooked. Critic Maureen Corrigan says the mystery is respectable, but she will shelve it in the "I've read worse, but I've read better" category.
Tuesday, July 02, 2013
This is the second mystery in Sara Gran's series featuring 40-ish bad-girl detective Claire DeWitt. Critic Maureen Corrigan says that reading a noir novel written by a Brooklyn-born author gave her a rush of private-eye, patriotic pride.
Monday, June 17, 2013
Colum McCann won the National Book Award for his 2009 novel, Let the Great World Spin, about a high-wire artist. Critic Maureen Corrigan says McCann's new novel, TransAtlantic, also has its head in the clouds.
Monday, May 27, 2013
Recently, Fresh Air contributor Maureen Corrigan found a letter from then-Secretary of War James Forrestal that had been sent to her father after he had been honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy in 1945. In that letter, she found an expression of gratitude that could serve us well today.
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
The new book from Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is a knockout of a novel about immigration that transcends genre. It's everything from a coming-of-age novel to a romance to a comic novel of social manners to an up-to-the-minute meditation on race.
Tuesday, May 07, 2013
Full of sex, intrigue and clues based on Victorian poetry, Elanor Dymott's Every Contact Leaves a Trace is a literary mystery about a murder at Oxford University. This tale of a clueless husband who discovers his wife's true nature too late reminds critic Maureen Corrigan a little of Gone Girl.
Monday, May 06, 2013
The latest novel from three-time National Book Award finalist Gail Godwin takes inspiration from Henry James' The Turn of the Screw. Both stories take place in isolated old houses, and both revolve around mental contests between a governess character and her young charge.
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Ken Kalfus' new novel about an astronomer obsessed with attracting the attention of Martians appears at first to be an homage to the scientific romances of H.G. Wells and the lost-world sagas of H. Rider Haggard. As the novel develops, however, its unique social commentaries emerge.
Thursday, April 11, 2013
In her new memoir, Shocked, Volk examines the two women who had a lasting impact on her as she began to parse who she was as a woman: her beautiful, critical mother, Audrey Morgen Volk; and the famous — and unconventional — haute couture designer Elsa Schiaparelli.
Wednesday, April 03, 2013
Elizabeth Strout is best known for her short story collection Olive Kitteridge, which won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 2009. Her new book is a novel, and critic Maureen Corrigan says it's a different type of winner.
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
The rich and good-looking get a taste of life among the 99 percent in Jonathan Dee's novels. In A Thousand Pardons, his protagonist, Helen Armstead, finds a secret talent for getting powerful men to apologize after her marriage falls apart and she is forced to enter the working world.
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg has drawn a lot of attention with her "sort of a feminist manifesto" Lean In. Critic Maureen Corrigan finds that much of the book is bland, but toward the end, Sandberg's intellectual charisma breaks through.