KP Reads
43 results total, viewing 1 - 20
A Baptist missionary named Nathan Price leaves Georgia and takes his wife and four daughters to a small town in the Congo in 1959. What could go wrong? more
The great travel writer Jonathan Raban survived a stroke while sitting at his Seattle dinner table one evening with his 18-year-old daughter, Julia. more
I no longer remember when I first encountered the poems of W.S. Merwin, but it was likely in some snooty magazine back in the 1980s I had no business reading. Once discovered, I sought out his poetry … more
The scene took place last Spring. Four middle-aged male humanities professors were sitting together in a pub in Vancouver, BC, sipping beer, sharing their impressions of a just-concluded conference. … more
It was a long evening with old friends and their children, who outnumbered us at our long table, all in college or college-aged, as we found our way through a cold ceviche, warm pear salad, and a … more
Violence tests us in unexpected ways. It strains our identity when the time comes to defend all those fancy principles we think we hold. I was already suitably humbled when I heard the … more
Dusk, late summer. A deer works the edge of the pasture. A lonely frog, peeping, is answered by a cricket. As the light slips, a bat skitters in and out of the shrinking circle I can see. more
A year ago in September, I wrote about a few books in these pages that I thought our community might read and asked for suggestions for those many titles I certainly missed. One that came in … more
As someone who teaches college-level literature classes for a living, once or twice a year I find myself giving my students some version of this speech: It’s no surprise to me that I only … more
One day last month I was standing in line at my neighborhood gas station with a six-pack in one hand and a three-day-old corndog in the other when a tall, younger (than me) Black man with a … more
Maybe you miss it too. Or maybe you just missed it, or missed most of it. Not that it was all lollipops and moonbeams. There was plenty of horrible stuff. But looking back, a lot of important things … more
Do you know what nonbinary means? If you don’t care to know, do you think others should have the opportunity to read about it if they so choose, like at a library? What if … more
One of the greatest summers of my life was spent in New York City in 1986. I had worked my way through a prestigious university with honors, survived a year of lymphoma, and landed my dream job … more
Late last fall I read that one of my favorite directors, Noah Baumbach, had written and directed a movie based on the novel “White Noise” by Don DeLillo from the 1980s. I read the book … more
In 1986, an 18-year-old white woman named Ronda Morrison was murdered during an apparent sexual assault at the dry cleaners where she worked in Monroeville, Alabama. The community was stunned but … more
In “Saving Us,” Katharine Hayhoe suggests that the most important thing any of us can do to fight climate change is to discuss it with others.  She admits it can be hard to have a … more
A strange thing happened last winter when I was teaching H.G. Wells’ 1897 sci-fi novel “The War of the Worlds” to a class of college freshmen. All of a sudden, the story became … more
A friend recommended this novel to me after it was banned from the curriculum last summer by the Muskego-Norway school board in Wisconsin, a district of about 4,800 students. There were no complaints … more
I was driven to read Atul Gawande’s compelling book for the first time shortly after its publication in 2014. more
In mid-May, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tracked its highest-ever weekly CO2 levels in Earth’s atmosphere … more
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