UC Berkeley alum Tomine starry-eyed in ‘Drawings’

The story of the New Yorker, the renowned arts and culture magazine, is an interesting one in and of itself, but it helps to start with Rea Irvin. Rea Irvin was the magazine’s art editor at its inception. Transplanted to the Big Apple from foggy San Francisco in 1906, Irvin
Read More…


Michael Chabon’s ‘Telegraph Avenue’ oversaturated, dull

It’s clear in the beginning of Michael Chabon’s newest novel, “Telegraph Avenue,” that Nat Jaffe and Archy Stallings are fucked. In fact, it is the second sentence emitted from Nat’s mouth to his co-owner of Brokeland Records, a fictional, yet realistic, jazz music store in the fold of Berkeley and
Read More…

final dress

Junot Diaz’s new fiction challenges yet delights

Published in an August issue of The New Yorker, “The Cheater’s Guide to Love” is a postmodern affair that should be taken with a grain of salt.  A cheater’s guide to love? The idea is laughable, as is his titular proposition: You’re going to allow the exact antithesis of love
Read More…


David Sedaris charms listeners with dark humor

Last Thursday night, David Sedaris talked pretty all over Berkeley. He started in the Berkeley Art Museum at a fundraiser-turned-cocktail party for the California College of the Arts, where the writer met with Stephen Beal —  president of CCA and Sedaris’ former art professor at School of the Art Institute
Read More…


Stories intersect in the desert in Hari Kunzru’s latest novel

In contrast to the standard linear novel, Hari Kunzru’s “Gods Without Men” twitches back and forth between hundreds of years with characters that all relate and complement one another — even if they do not meet. This makes it a thought-provoking novel for the often distracted and difficult-to-impress modern reader.
Read More…


Handler’s mediocre new novel disappoints

The celebrated children’s author Daniel Handler, who is based in San Francisco, wrote “A Series of Unfortunate Events” under the pseudonym Lemony Snicket. But for his latest book, “Why We Broke Up,” he uses his real name. It’s too bad that Handler’s real name is as much of a disappointment
Read More…


Alternative Press Expo 2011

You won’t find many superheroes at the Alternative Press Expo, a yearly comic book convention in San Francisco. And if you do, they’re probably not the sort that the city deserves — big publishers don’t show up to showcase the latest Batman or Superman offerings, nor would you see much
Read More…


With Great Force

A medium simultaneously obscure and ubiquitous, the comic book is often dismissed as reading material for nerds, children and nerdy children. After all, famous characters like the X-Men and Batman constantly find their way on screen in the latest special effects-ridden blockbuster du jour, searing themselves onto the mainstream public’s
Read More…