books

Teresa Frontado / WLRN

It's far from the most important thing you should worry about when preparing for a hurricane — but if you're a reader, you probably thought hard about what book(s) to bring to wherever you were riding out Hurricane Irma.

You're not only choosing what you might read in that time, you are potentially choosing what books you will save from all of those in your home.

Here's what some of WLRN's staffers chose. Share yours in the comments, or tweet us @wlrn.

Teresa Frontado, WLRN digital director

Patti Smith, Isabel Allende, James McBride and Wallace Shawn are some of the authors participating in the 2017 edition of the Miami Book Fair's "Evenings With ... " series, presented by WLRN.

Participants in "Evenings " will have the opportunity to hear authors read from their latest books for five nights in a row. Some days there will be functions at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Unless otherwise noted, all events are at the Chapman Conference Center, Building 3, 2nd floor, of the Miami Dade College Wolfson Campus in downtown Miami. Tickets are $15 per person. 

The author Salman Rushdie has set his books all over the world. His most famous novels — Midnight's Children and The Satanic Verses — take place in India and the United Kingom, both countries where Rushdie has lived. His latest, The Golden House, is set in the city he now calls home, New York, and its themes are deeply American.

Work: It's just one of the many reasons to explain why Americans love the weekend so much.

This weekend, however, we're going to give you a little bit more of it - in book form, that is. It is Labor Day weekend, after all, so we're celebrating. 

It's a pair of rites we see often at the passing of great authors: first, the tributes from those who loved their books; then, the good-faith effort to find their unfinished works and shepherd them to the bookshelves they never would have found otherwise.

If you've seen the hit musical Hamilton — or even if you've only heard about it — you might want to know more about the founding father who was the United States' first Secretary of the Treasury. And if so, the Library of Congress just made it easier to go right to the source.

Just a few pages into My Absolute Darling, Martin Alveston quizzes his 14-year-old daughter, Turtle, on her vocabulary; it's a subject the young girl is having considerable trouble with at her middle school. Frustrated by his daughter's progress, Martin tosses her notebook across the room, and places a semiautomatic pistol in front of her. He holds a playing card in his hand, daring her to shoot it. "You're being a little b----," he says. "Are you trying to be a little b----, kibble?"

The Keys are on our minds this week because it's the annual Florida Keys Museums and Attractions Weekend.  If you've ever wanted to explore more about the history, culture and natural environment of the Keys, you can get free and discounted admission to more than 20 museums and attractions from Islamorada to Key West.

If you can't make it, or want to learn more about the Keys on the page, we came up with these recommendations from some people who really know the island chain. If you have suggestions, add them in the comments or tweet them to us @WLRN.

All evidence points out to the fact that the earth is warming and the climate is changing. In Florida, that means more unpleasantly hot days, rising seas and stronger storms. 

So, it may be time to read up on the subject, if you haven’t already. Some concerned members of the community have taken up learning how to teach others about climate change science and solutions. 

The last year has been a divisive one for our national political scene. But one uniting factor has been to turn a lot more of us into political junkies - talking, texting and tweeting about the latest moves in Congress or the White House as if they were episodes of "Game of Thrones."

Sometimes, though, it's nice to take a break from the fire hose of breaking updates and Twitter feeds and read an entire book. We asked some journalists who closely follow politics for their recommendations.

It's a time-honored tradition for novelists to draw material from their own lives, and author Tom Perrotta is no exception. His 2004 book, Little Children, sprang from his experience as the parent of young kids. Three years later, he published The Abstinence Teacher, which was inspired, in part, by the junior-high and high-school sports his children played at the time.

Simon Cocks / Flickr

Florida takes its hits, from late-night TV jokes to, now, even a ranking as the worst state in the nation for a “staggeringly impressive” “awfulness resume,” according to the website Thrillist.

But for all the Flori-duh jokes (that we make, too, but we live here so it’s OK), this is an astonishingly large, diverse, beautiful, interesting and yeah, sometimes staggeringly awful place — and it has produced some remarkable works of literature.

For an entire generation of writers, Michiko Kakutani acted at times as intrepid champion, hated villain or helping hand. But from her perch as chief book critic at The New York Times, the Pulitzer Prize winner rarely left one thing in doubt: her vast influence over the literary world she assessed.

On Thursday, after 38 years, Kakutani announced she is stepping down.

Courtesy of ruthbehar.com

A few years after Ruth Behar and her family arrived in Queens, New York from Cuba in the early 1960's shortly after Fidel Castro took power, they were in an awful car accident that killed five teenage boys and left her in a full-body cast for most of the next year. She was nine years old, and spent her 10th birthday in that cast. 

We've had mangoes on our mind all month. (Stay tuned for an upcoming story about mango chutney!)

Then we remembered Miami Spice month starts Aug. 1. So, to prepare for deals on delicious meals in South Florida, we asked two writers and a chef about their favorite food books. 

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