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Austin Film Festival: Coming Through the Rye
A Salinger-obsessed teen searches for his idol
DAILY Screens  November 1, 2015, by Steve Davis
"...It’s remarkable how J.D. Salinger’s 1951 novel The Catcher in the Rye continues to resonate with each generation of readers who identify with the book’s misunderstood (in his mind) protagonist, the sensitive and troubled 17-year-old Holden Caulfield...."

A Dyke To Watch Out For
Watch out, dykes, Alison Bechdel is coming!
DAILY The Gay Place  November 5, 2008, by Andy Campbell
"...Those who have been readers of the strip, now in circulation for over 25 years, know what a talent Bechdel is. Even if you haven't read DTWOF, Bechdel's Fun Home, a graphic novel which concerns her process of coming out, but also the death of her father (and subsequent discovery that her father may have been gay also)..."

Journey Toward a Novel
Columns  October 16, 1998, by Michael Ventura
"...Obsession re-mains price the of creation," wrote Nelson Algren, "and the writer who declines that risk will come up with nothing." Two years overdue at the publisher's, finally this novel, my fourth, is done. (It concerns a Marilyn Monroe impersonator in Vegas.) For some of us, to delve into our obsession is to go where madness thrives..."

Laying It All Out
Novelist Shelby Hearon has made an art of the little white lie.
Books Story  February 16, 2001, by Robin Bradford
"...When I walked into the polished granite lobby of the Renaissance Hotel at the Arboretum, which was bustling with people in business suits or golf shirts and jeans (the "new" business suit) briskly walking and talking on their cell phones at the same time, I felt much like Ella, the main character in Shelby Hearon's latest novel, Ella in Bloom. Having spent the past five months living on a ranch, I was as out of my element as Ella, the grownup wild child of a staid old Austin clan..."

Memories of My Father Watching TV: A Novel
Books Review  January 14, 1999
"...Around this time, Dodds Barker leaves Plymouth for London by bus. Set up with a rent-free apartment, he's one of those blue-collar wrecks who turn up early and often in Martin Amis novels..."

Working Worked Out
Theaterless Theater Corps, Rude Mechanicals, KAIROS! Co.
Arts Story  August 26, 1999, by Robert Faires
"...The Lab participants, and especially Lab Artistic Director Robert Blacker, recognized that in what Hancock was doing and had no problem with the current novel-length draft of the script. "That was cool," Boone says, "but it took me a while to really accept that that was cool." What helped was the relaxed atmosphere -- "like camp," Boone notes with a grin -- and the openness of the lab..."

Working Worked Out
Theaterless Theater Corps, Rude Mechanicals, KAIROS! Co.
  August 26, 1999, by Robert Faires
"...The Lab participants, and especially Lab Artistic Director Robert Blacker, recognized that in what Hancock was doing and had no problem with the current novel-length draft of the script. "That was cool," Boone says, "but it took me a while to really accept that that was cool." What helped was the relaxed atmosphere -- "like camp," Boone notes with a grin -- and the openness of the lab..."

Darkness With a Twist of Dime-Store Novel
White Whale Games brings the pulp-fiction aesthetic into the Aughties
Screens Story  December 9, 2011, by Ashley Moreno
"...To help players organically and quickly grasp the game's lore, White Whale periodically releases on the company blog cover art for faux fantasy novels about worlds and characters in the game. "We like to pretend [the novels] are in our world," says Royer..."

Santa Claus Is dot.Coming
Some off-kilter suggestions for the online shopper interested in more than Amazon.com.
Screens Story  December 10, 1999, by Jon Lebkowsky
"...Especially cool are the Lego Mindstorms Robotic Inventions System and R.A.D., a high-performance radio-controlled robot you can use to terrorize the neighborhood cats. (If you prefer cyborgs to robots, they do sell Philip Dick's classic novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, filmed as Blade Runner, which is also available on video from this site.)ShipStore.com http://www.shipstore.com/ Over 30,000 marine products for folks who're crazy about boating, fishing, swimming, etc..."

Poodie's Stomps Out Butts
A place to run from F1
DAILY Music  November 13, 2012, by Margaret Moser
"...Back then – the Nineties – nonsmoking venues were novel, but Buckley thought the times were a-changing, and he was right, bless his soul. Over the years, Buckley and I met up for interviews and catching up because we’d gotten friendly over the fact that our fathers died the same year..."

Out of Print and Onto Film
The Austin Film Society Texas Documentary Tour: Mark Moskowitz's 'Stone Reader'
Screens Story  April 9, 2004, by Anne S. Lewis
"...An unread copy of The Stones of Summer, Dow Mossman's 1972 debut coming-of-age novel, sat on book lover Mark Moskowitz's bookshelf for 16 years. When Moskowitz finally got around to reading the book, he loved it and went looking for other Mossman books only to hit a wall: There were none..."

Head On
As the woefully conflicted young Greek-Australian Ari, the feral, dynamic Dimitriades is less a teenage house o' fire than a self-made neutron bomb: He may kill himself, but he'll leave...
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Film Review  October 22, 1999, by Marc Savlov
"...Actually, Ari's outcome is never for a moment certain in this feature debut by Ana Kokkinos, who is also of Greco-Aussie descent. The director has adapted Christos Tsiolkas' monologue-laden novel Loaded for the screen and managed to make one of the most grungily powerful portraits of an imploding down-under youth culture since Geoff Wright's Romper Stomper..."

Pariah
Pariah tells the specific but universal story of a black teenage girl who is a virginal lesbian, budding writer, and nonconformist.
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Film Review  January 13, 2012, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Yes, it’s a coming-out film, but it breaks that mold by being thoroughly unpredictable. It’s a coming-of-age film, too, and by virtue of of telling the story of a young, black lesbian, Pariah also ventures into novel territory for a motion picture..."

AFF Snags Jon Stewart’s Rosewater
The Humbling, The Last 5 Years tapped for opening night
DAILY Screens  September 30, 2014, by Kimberley Jones
"...The fest will be bookended with two other TIFF alums, Barry Levinson's The Humbling and Richard LaGravenese's The Last 5 Years. Adapted from Philip Roth's 2009 novel and starring Al Pacino and Greta Gerwig, The Humbling will open the fest on Oct..."

Lingering on the Beloved Characters of 'What Ever'
Talking with Heather Woodbury about the people in her eight-hour performance novel, What Ever.
Arts Story  December 5, 2003, by Heather Barfield Cole
"...It's been six years since Heather Woodbury last performed What Ever in Austin, and while I've seen the show twice, I crave it, to experience again the sympathy and laughter that prompted so pleasantly in me before. What Ever is not to be missed, but if you do, no worries: Woodbury has reformatted her script into a novel, which has just been published by Faber and Faber Inc..."

Johnny Got His Gun
Austin-bred actor Ben McKenzie stars in this one-man show of Dalton Trumbo's timeless anti-war novel.
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Film Review  September 26, 2008, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Starring: Ben McKenzie. As long as humankind continues to wage war, it's safe to say that Dalton Trumbo's searing anti-war novel Johnny Got His Gun will never go out of circulation..."

In Her Shoes
Even if these Shoes are not perfectly stitched, the fit is nevertheless comfortable and the look is polished.
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Film Review  October 7, 2005, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Confidential, and coming-of-age predicaments that are more accurately the coming-out from a prolonged adolescence like Eminem’s Rabbit in 8 Mile or Douglas’ pot-addled writer in Wonder Boys. Hanson takes a prosaic and overly schematic script by Erin Brockovich screenwriter Susannah Grant (who adapted from the novel by Jennifer Weiner) and spins it into box-office gold..."

Review: Spinning
Tillie Walden's graphic novel is a powerful coming-of-age tale
DAILY Arts  November 3, 2017, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"...Here’s a coming-of-age story that’s not made exclusively of words nor exclusively of images, but of those two things in masterful combination. A graphic novel, yes..."

LoneStarCon 3: The Lois McMaster Bujold Interview
The Hugo Award nominee and past winner on biology as politics
DAILY Books  September 1, 2013, by Amy Gentry
"...Lois McMaster Bujold has won more Hugo Awards for best novel than anyone but Robert Heinlein, and if you’re confused about why, you haven’t been paying attention. For 27 years, she’s been turning out book after book in the acclaimed Vorkosigan Saga, a “military space opera” with a heart – and brain and uterus, or at least uterine replicator...."

The People Person
Peter Hedges' 'Pieces of April' brings the novelist-screenwriter out of the quiet and into the filmmaking fray.
Screens Story  November 7, 2003, by Marc Savlov
"...You may not recall Peter Hedges' name, but you've almost certainly heard of his work. He penned the screenplay for his first novel, What's Eating Gilbert Grape, for director Lasse Hallström, netting an Oscar nomination for Leonardo DiCaprio in the process..."

LoneStarCon 3: The Jo Walton Interview
The Hugo-winning author of 'Among Others' really loves books
DAILY Books  August 30, 2013, by Amy Gentry
"...“If you love books enough, books will love you back.” So says Morwenna "Mori" Phelps, the 15-year-old protagonist of Jo Walton’s weird, wonderful, genre-bending book that won last year’s Hugo Award for Best Novel, beating out, among others, George R. R..."

Fist of the North Star
With more viscera per minute than a John Woo film and enough exploding craniums to render David Cronenberg a lightweight, this new example of over-the-top Japanimation should keep the dear...
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Film Review  January 24, 1992, by Marc Savlov
"...With more viscera per minute than a John Woo film and enough exploding craniums to render David Cronenberg a lightweight, this new example of over-the-top Japanimation should keep the dear departed Walt Disney spinning in his gravesite for quite a while. Based on the best-selling Japanese graphic novel, Fist is set in a post-apocalyptic world populated with oversized martial arts warriors, bright-eyed kids, and cycle-crazed rejects from The Road Warrior..."

Scott McCloud in Austin with The Sculptor this Weekend
The affable theorist of Understanding Comics waxes all fictional.
DAILY Books  February 4, 2015, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"...In fact, the new book isn't even nonfiction. The new Scott McCloud book is a graphic novel for adults..."

The Ice Storm Song
Email exchange with ‘The Ice Storm’ author/musician Rick Moody
DAILY Music  February 28, 2012, by Raoul Hernandez
"...At a Dec. 6 benefit for Austin Bat Cave, a tutoring center for kids, Rick Moody appeared at the Blanton Museum of Art for a screening of The Ice Storm, Ang Lee's faithful adaptation of his second novel..."

Bedside Manner: Hell on Earth
Dark literature in dark times, plus a plea for casting sanity
DAILY Books  September 6, 2011, by Richard Whittaker
"...Mignola himself has announced that he will be returning to sole writing and art duties on Hellboy: It will be interesting to see what that means for his Baltimore, his new endeavor with Christopher Golden. The original oversized illustrated novel Baltimore, or The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire, was a mix of Hans Christian Andersen, Siegfried Sassoon and Nosferatu..."

God Says No
With dust-dry wit, James Hannaham charts a Homeric course for his protagonist through a sham marriage, an identity change, Atlanta's gay underground, an extended pray-away-the-gay program, and more
Books Review  July 10, 2009, by Cindy Widner
"...Sheltered and underwhelmed, Gary seems both perplexed and halfway apathetic about the absurd trajectory of his life. It is the impressive discipline of first-time novelist (and Michner graduate) James Hannaham's flat prose – which displays an almost anti-writerly lack of ornament, devoid of extensive contemplation – that allows such a thorough inhabitation of his character..."

SXSW Film Unveils March Lineup
So much ado!
DAILY Screens  January 31, 2013, by Kimberley Jones
"...In the Headliners category, Tim McCanlies (Dancer, Texas Pop. 81) will debut When Angels Sing, scripted by novelist Lou Berney (Gutshot Straight) and starring Harry Connick Jr., Connie Britton, Lyle Lovett, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson..."

Something Wicked This Way Comes: Lucinda Williams
New songs, new outlook, new horizons
DAILY Music  January 15, 2013, by Margaret Moser
"...At the same time, they found a novel Woody had written but never published, also called House of Earth. So the book is coming out in conjunction with the song..."

Fanning the Flames
Did TV News Reports Jeopardize Out Youth Austin's Partnership With AISD?
News Story  March 24, 2000, by Suzy Spencer
"..."There is nothing novel about talking about sex with teenagers, and sexuality is part of that," Hanna says. And, she points out, "there's a difference between advocating and exploiting, and simply providing information..."

Writing Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror in Austin
How local authors who work beyond the world we know meet, connect, and launch themselves into the business
Arts Story  July 13, 2017, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"..."When I moved to Austin in 1998," says Christopher Brown, who presents his dystopian debut novel, Tropic of Kansas, at BookPeople this Friday, "it was partly because I could tell that there was a rich fantastic-literature community here, a community of both readers and writers."..."

Short Third-Degree Sessions
Jesse Sublett gets personal with four of Bouchercon 2002's featured authors.
Books Story  October 18, 2002, by Jesse Sublett
"...James Carlos Blake: Under the Skin is a 1930s crime novel set chiefly in Galveston in the heyday of the notorious Maceo brothers, but venturing as well into West Texas and Mexico. It's about a violent young man named Jimmy Youngblood, bastard son of Rodolfo Fierro, the fearsome and historically real Mexican revolutionary and a mysterious and wild-hearted American mother; and it deals chiefly with his coming to terms with the truths of his own nature...."

An Austin D.A. Turns to Detective Novels
Q&A with Mark Pryor on his Paris-set Hugo Marston mysteries
DAILY Books  October 10, 2012, by Jordan Smith
"...On Oct. 12, he'll add published mystery novelist to his list of accomplishments with the release of his debut novel, The Bookseller (Seventh Street Books)...."

Picks & Sleepers
Sxsw
Music Story  March 20, 1998
"...LITTLE JACK MELODY: Denton's Little Jack Melody & His Young Turks produce novel and charismatic songs that create a circus cum stratosphere, lounge-meets-cabaret, musical milieu. Add adventurous instrumentation of horns, South American rhythms, a good old-fashioned harmonium, and a few textured ballads, and you have the recipe for one helluva weird, fun ride on Little Jack's melodic reality coaster..."

The Book Thief
This print bestseller about a girl's coming of age amid the horrors of Nazi Germany is swaddled in maudlin melodrama in this film adaptation.
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Film Review  November 29, 2013, by Marc Savlov
"...In 2005, Aussie author Markus Zusak’s staggeringly popular and critically lauded The Book Thief spent four-and-a-half years on The New York Times Best Seller list. No mean feat for an ostensibly Young Adult novel relating an intimate tale of one plucky young girl’s coming of age-cum-survival quest amid the apocalyptic insanity of Nazi Germany..."

Best of Print 1995
Words: Printed, Spoken, and Painted
Books Story  January 5, 1996
"...Words have taken on a new life, on screen, on stage, and, of course, on the page. This year, we've included thoughts on spoken word, poetry, and graphic novels, reflecting the ever-expanding universe of words..."

Even Cowgirls Get the Blues
What this film adaptation of Tom Robbins' popular Seventies novel may ultimately prove is that when the prevailing wisdom regards a particular book as “unfilmable,” adapters should heed the warning...
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Film Review  May 20, 1994, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Starring: Uma Thurman, John Hurt, Rain Phoenix, Noriyuki “Pat” Morita, Keanu Reeves, Lorraine Bracco, Angie Dickinson and Buck Henry. What this film adaptation of Tom Robbins' popular Seventies novel may ultimately prove is that when the prevailing wisdom regards a particular book as “unfilmable,” adapters should heed the warning rather than accept the challenge..."

The Hours
There's a mesmerizing, almost hypnotic rhythm to The Hours, the exquisite adaptation of Michael Cunningham's seemingly unfilmable Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Most films simply move from scene to scene, but this...
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Film Review  January 17, 2003, by Steve Davis
"...Reilly, Claire Danes, Toni Collette, Miranda Richardson, Stephen Dillane, Jeff Daniels and Jack Rovello. There's a mesmerizing, almost hypnotic rhythm to The Hours, the exquisite adaptation of Michael Cunningham's seemingly unfilmable Pulitzer Prize-winning novel..."

Outside Providence
Outside Providence is a sweet and funny coming-of-age movie set in 1974. Despite charting no new ground for the genre, the movie still does what it does extremely well. Beguiling...
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Film Review  September 3, 1999, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...True, underscoring this movie is the imprint of brothers Peter and Bobby -- the duo whose names have become synonymous with the rise of lowbrow humor on the basis of their phenomenal success with such films as Dumb & Dumber and There's Something About Mary. Peter Farrelly wrote the novel on which Outside Providence is based back before he was a force to be reckoned with in the “lowering” of American taste and before he discovered the profit motive in playing dumb -- and dumber..."

A League of Their Own
Screens Story  March 11, 1999, by Jesse Sublett
"...William Broyles (Apollo 13) is polishing his script for Cast Away, currently being directed by Bob Zemeckis and starring Tom Hanks, in an unusual two-part shooting schedule. On the small screen, there's The Memoirs of Cleopatra, ABC's mega-budget 14-hour miniseries written by screenwriter-novelist Stephen Harrigan..."

India Ink
The Literary Coming of the Second Continent
Books Story  December 5, 1997, by Michael J. DiLeo
"...As it turns out, the girlish ring of the prose is just right, for The God of Small Things is the story of multiple regressions. The epicenter is a fateful day in 1969 when everything went horribly wrong for young twins named Rahel and Estha and all around them, but the novel moves in great circles around its climax, whirling forward and back in time..."

Bless Me, Ultima
This honest, earnest, and naturalistic kids’ story about growing up Mexican-American in 1940s New Mexico is based on the popular book.
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Film Review  February 22, 2013, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...The independent film Bless Me, Ultima is based on the most widely read and bestselling novel of the Chicano literary canon, according to the film’s press kit. Written by Rudolfo Anaya and published in 1972, the book tells the coming-of-age story of a young boy under the guidance of his mentor – a curandera or healer – in New Mexico during the Second World War..."

Limitless
As cautionary tales go, this is an entertaining take on finding your muse through chemical means.
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Film Review  March 18, 2011, by Marc Savlov
"...Well, eventually it travels into the black, but before that it's pure wish fulfillment, and giddily so. Adapted from Alan Glynn's novel The Dark Fields, it posits a Philip Dick-ian now in which – as if out of nowhere – a lone and lonely writer finds literary (and financial) salvation in the form of a pill..."

Top Books
Hard-Boiled Top Ten
Books Story  January 10, 1997, by Jesse Sublett
"...Izzi doesn't appear on my Top Ten because I didn't read any of his books this year, but I respected him, and I like books that are, like his, tough and close to the bone. It also seems appropriate that my list should include not only crime novels but a memoir and a biography or two as well...."

Film Reviews
Recommended
News Story  October 13, 1995
"...What you don't expect to see - and what Devil in a Blue Dress shows us, with great results - are not-so-mean streets, streets with homes and shops, streets paved with hard work and washed in sweat, streets on which a good man may find a home. The story, adapted from Walter Mosley's novel, centers on Ezekiel "Easy" Rawlins, a WWII vet whose pride and joy is his own home in 1948 L.A..."

Page Two: Fictional Fiction According to John Irving
Louis Black interviews his former writing teacher about his latest novel, Avenue of Mysteries
Columns  November 5, 2015, by Louis Black
"...A decade after I first met him, the publication of The World According to Garp changed everything. The Hotel New Hampshire, The Cider House Rules, and A Prayer for Owen Meany established Irving as one of our most important contemporary novelists..."

The Fault in Our Stars
The film does justice to the popular novel in this judicious teen tearjerker.
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Film Review  June 6, 2014, by Kimberley Jones
"...A cancer survivor and self-described 18-year-old virgin with only one leg, Gus doggedly ignores Hazel’s efforts to keep a safe distance, keep him in the friend zone. That they will fall in love is foregone, even for those who hadn’t already gulped John Green’s gorgeous source novel – director Josh Boone (Stuck in Love) announces the relationship at the very start of the film, in a flash-forward montage that plays like a trailer, or an early valentine to die-hard fans twitching for that first kiss..."

What Maisie Knew
Young Maisie’s divorced parents are negligent, not cruel, in this contemporary take on the novel by Henry James from the co-directors of the Deep End.
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Film Review  July 12, 2013, by Kimberley Jones
"...“They had wanted her not for any good they could do her, but for the harm they could, with her unconscious aid, do each other.” Henry James wrote that just before the turn of the 20th century, but 21st century children of divorce don’t have to squint to see themselves in young Maisie, the ball batted back and forth between brawling exes. It’s no wonder screenwriters Nancy Doyne and Carroll Cartwright spied expiration-date-free drama in the 1897 source novel; with minimal refurbishment, What Maisie Knew makes an easy transition to contemporary Manhattan...."

Lila Says
Based on an eponymous 1996 erotic novel, Lila Says is the story of a French girl and an Arab boy who learns the difference between words and actions.
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Film Review  September 9, 2005, by Marjorie Baumgarten
"...Doueiri made a small splash a few years ago with his first feature West Beirut, a coming-of-age film about kids growing up amid the ever-changing boundaries of the DMZ and the experience of first love that is complicated by religious differences. In his sophomore effort, Lila Says, Doueiri revisits the task of coming of age, although this time the action moves to an Arab section of Marseilles, and the narrative is based on an eponymous 1996 erotic novel by Chimo..."

Remembrance of Texas Past
The Year in Texas Lit
Books Story  January 5, 2001, by Clay Smith
"...But Stephen Harrigan's The Gates of the Alamo -- which eventually made it to The New York Times bestseller list and other major lists -- went a considerable way toward converting even those people most vigorously uninterested in San Antonio's old brown shrine and the consequences of the battle that took place there. He does it in a deceptively simple way, deceptive because arrigan's eight years of research for the novel don't show up on the page as "research." He writes with a keen awareness that anyone who tears down the hackneyed myths of Travis, Crockett, and Bowie has to supplant them with another story to believe in..."

Dancer in the Dark
Björk goes goes to the death chamber in musical interludes.
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Film Review  October 6, 2000, by Marc Savlov
"...The clank of a factory press becomes a leaden backbeat, the ka-chunk of a train passing becomes a steam-driven rhythm, and suddenly there's song, and dance, and, well, confusion. It's a novel idea, but von Trier's use of DV cameras (he reportedly used over a hundred simultaneously to capture the dance sequences -- it doesn't show) makes the bizarre musical interludes seem less giddy than gritty..."

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