Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

May 17, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

Hope Remains

I don’t feel great in the fearsome months of May and December – do you? (Speaking as a person who’s wound pretty tight already.) I’m grateful that mental health gets a lot more attention than it used to. Matt Osborne returns to Bacon today with a feature on Mental Health Awareness Month and the provocative, heart-wrenching work of artist Derek Hess. (You can find Hess’s work …

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January 21, 2018
by jenniferpuryear

All I Have To Do Is Dream

The Everly Brothers were not the first to croon about the power of dreams, but they did pretty much corner the market for a while. There’s a new kid in town – Matthew Walker – and Matt Osborne returns to Bacon today for a terrific discussion of his new book, Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams. From Matt: I love to …

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June 30, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Who’s Your Favorite Literary Character? (Summer Series, Part 1)

  Which literary characters have most enchanted you, taking up residence in your mind and heart? For me: Dorothy, Frodo, Laura and her family, Harry and Hermione (the two forever linked in my mind, I can take or leave Ron). Also the little girl in The Little Princess, and James Herriot, to the extent that an autobiography is a person’s creation of himself as a …

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March 23, 2017
by jenniferpuryear

Spring Break Special: It’s Epic!

Book Title: Norse Mythology

Spring Break is all fun and games until one of the kids – your friend’s kid! the kid she trusted you with! – steps on a shard of glass poolside which lodges at a strange angle in her foot and you find yourself at Urgent Care. At that point you’re feeling EPIC ANXIETY followed by EPIC RELIEF after the doctor successfully removes the shard and …

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December 9, 2016
by jenniferpuryear

Bob Dylan’s Nobel: How Does It Feel?

Thank you, Nobel Committee – we needed something else to divide our nation!   Friends, neighbors, and co-workers have been shocked by the Committee’s decision to award Bob Dylan the Nobel Prize for Literature, sparking heated discussions across the land. I convened a symposium of four friends who are passionate about music and literature, and here’s what they have to say…  From George Cassidy, author, songwriter, …

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October 31, 2016
by jenniferpuryear

Guest Post by Matt Osborne: Lampholder in the Dark Places

Book Title: My Dark Places

Matt Osborne is an American original, a Southern intellectual and anti-intellectual who practices law by day and fights crime by night.  In his cape.  All tatted up.  Cue soundtrack:  Gimme Shelter (Rolling Stones).  I’m kidding about a few of those things but not all!  Today, Matt illuminates by taking us into the dark. From Matt: James Ellroy is the undefeated and still heavyweight champion of …

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March 29, 2016
by jenniferpuryear

Parenting By The Book

The Witch’s lament from “Into the Woods” haunts me.  “Children can only grow from something you love into something you lose,” she mourns, after her beloved Rapunzel escapes the tower.  It is part of Sondheim’s genius that your heart is breaking with her. Today, regular Bacon contributor Matt Osborne reflects on children growing up – and the parent he has tried to be. From Matt: The clock …

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October 20, 2015
by jenniferpuryear

Guest Post by Matt Osborne: Art is Honesty…

Book Title: Please Be With Me: A Song for My Father, Duane Allman

Matt sends this post from Chapel Hill, NC, to Bacon readers and music lovers in Nashville (and beyond): Art is honesty; else you have entertainment, or distraction. Entertainment and distraction are welcome, even necessary at times, but there is something so different – a visceral, soaring, beautiful intensity – in a Terrence Malick frame, or a Jeremy Mann painting, or a Sally Mann photograph.  And it was …

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July 20, 2015
by jenniferpuryear

Guest Post by Matt Osborne on Go Set A Watchman: “If You Did Not Want Much, There Was Plenty”

Book Title: Go Set A Watchman

Matt Osborne is likely the only person who bought Go Set A Watchman, by Harper Lee, and Dark Days: A Memoir, by Randy Blythe, on the same day.  Randy Blythe is frontman for the metal band Lamb of God and spent time several years ago in a Czech prison.  Matt reads (and listens to metal) with passion and careful attention.  Today, he brings his formidable talents to Go Set …

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