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By Line search: By STEVE PFARRER

Displaying articles 41 to 60 out of 131 total.
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The Beat Goes On: A busy couple of weeks at The Drake, a new acoustic music series in Holyoke, and more
01-25-2024 11:08 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

In my last column, I mentioned that The Parlor Room in Northampton and the Marigold Theater are maintaining busy schedules right through these early, dead-of-winter days.Another area venue that keeps pumping up the music is The Drake in Amherst, and...


Book Bag: ‘Kindling’ by Kathleen Jennings; ‘And the Trees Talked Back’ by Frederick J. Burns
01-25-2024 11:06 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

KindlingBy Kathleen JenningsSmall Beer Press Kathleen Jennings had already made a name for herself as a talented illustrator of fantasy books when she began writing her own stories some years back — and it turns out she can spin some magical tales of...


Hitting it big for wrong reasons: In ‘American Fiction,’ Black writer’s pastiche hailed as authentic
01-17-2024 7:09 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Though it had only an initial limited theatrical release, and did not appear until December, “American Fiction” has already popped up on a number of critics’ “best films of 2023” lists, and the movie has been nominated for a slew of awards.The buzz is...


Rachel Maddow’s new book examines American fascism in the WWII era
01-17-2024 7:07 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

The conventional story of World War II in the United States is the one about how the country, shrugging off the hardships brought on by the Great Depression, rolled up its sleeves to defeat the fascist forces of Nazi Germany and Japan and make the...


The Beat Goes On: Busy schedules at The Parlor Room and Marigold Theater, a ‘solo ensemble’ guitar concert in Greenfield, and more
01-11-2024 11:15 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Early January, just after the holidays and New Year’s Eve have run their course, can be a quiet time for a lot of music venues.But The Parlor Room in Northampton has put together a pretty jam-packed schedule right through this month, starting with a...


Crossing borders: Hadley author’s short story collection explores the human stories behind immigration
01-11-2024 11:09 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

On the U.S.-Mexican border, a desperate mother sends her young daughter alone across a bridge over the Rio Grande to try make it into Texas. In New York City, a Jewish woman confronts the hole in her heart when she thinks of her former Muslim husband,...


Book Bag: ‘Finding Home’ by Gwen Agna and Shelley Rotner; ‘In Praise of Listening’ by Christian McEwen
01-05-2024 9:11 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Finding Home: Words From Kids Seeking SanctuaryBy Gwen Agna and Shelley Rotner; Clarion Books Headlines inform us every day of the crises many people face around the world — war, climate disasters, violent crime — that force them to flee their homes....


And to think that I saw it at ACT: Amherst Community Theater readies for its newest production, ‘Seussical’
01-05-2024 8:59 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

He’s one of the most famous and beloved children’s book authors ever, and he grew about 20 miles south of here. So the work of Theodor Seuss Geisel — better known, or course, as Dr. Seuss — seemed like a natural fit for the new musical by Amherst...


The Beat Goes On: A Jeff Buckley tribute show, a slate of New Year’s weekend concerts, and more 
01-02-2024 10:34 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Like father, like son: Tim Buckley and his son, Jeff, both became musicians at a young age, and both died well before their time — Tim of a heroin overdose at age 28 in 1975, and Jeff from drowning at age 30 in 1997.Tim Buckley became a pretty...


Book Bag: ‘Noche Triste’ by Robert Radin; ‘My Girl Vaida’ by Caitlin Quinn
12-26-2023 11:04 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Noche Trist: A Memoir of AnorexiaBy Robert RadinIbidem/Columbia University Press A few years ago, Robert Radin, the the director of citizenship and immigration services for Jewish Family Service in Springfield, wrote a memoir about his experience...


Finding a way past apartheid: Documentary revisits program that brought Black South African students to Smith College during civil rights struggle
12-26-2023 10:57 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

The 1980s were a brutal time in South Africa. Decades of apartheid, the ironbound racial segregation system that relegated a majority Black population to second-class citizenship under white rule, led to increasing Black resistance, followed by severe...


Book Bag: ‘The Original Bucky Lew’ by Christopher Boucher; ‘The New Naturals’ by Gabriel Bump
12-15-2023 11:26 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

The Original Bucky Lew: Basketball’s First Black ProfessionalBy Chris Boucher; Wings ePress Inc.Harry “Bucky” Lew might not have the name recognition of Jackie Robinson. But the two men had something in common: Both broke an unstated color barrier in...


The Beat Goes On: Deck the halls with holiday shows, from Amherst to Easthampton to Northampton to Turners Falls
12-15-2023 11:16 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

The holidays are nearly upon us and, no surprise, the Valley’s music calendar is chock full of holiday shows over the next week, with some featuring bands playing their versions of seasonal tunes and others focused more on spreading general good...


Not home for the holidays: ‘The Holdovers’ offers a funny, bittersweet Christmas story
12-15-2023 11:15 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

Back in 2004, actor Paul Giamatti teamed up with screenwriter/director Alexander Payne in “Sideways,” an offbeat comedy/drama about two friends who take a road trip through the California wine country as they both grapple with midlife crises of a...


Restless Books sets up shop in Amherst: Independent publisher started in New York City finds a new home in the Valley
12-09-2023 1:11 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

A bit over 10 years ago, Ilan Stavans, the longtime Amherst College professor and writer, made his first venture into the business world: starting a publishing company dedicated to international writing.Restless Books, whose tagline is “an...


The Beat Goes On: A bluegrass ‘minifest’ in Whately, Swedish a capella in South Hadley, jazz in Holyoke, and more
11-29-2023 8:48 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Summer’s long past, and so are the watermelons. But Watermelon Wednesdays, the long-running summertime acoustic music series at the West Whately Chapel, isn’t ready to pull the plug on its concerts.On Dec. 6, they’re sponsoring what they call...


Just a big kid at art: Carle Museum showcases children’s book art of legendary graphic designer Seymour Chwast
11-29-2023 8:37 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Seymour Chwast turned 92 this summer. But in his heart, he might still be about 8 or 9 years old, based on the work he continues to create.A legendary graphic designer who, beginning in the 1950s, helped revolutionize the look of commercial art,...


Book Bag: ‘L’Allegria,’ translated by Wally Swist; ‘Listen to the Birds’ by Donald Kroodsman, Léna Mazilu and Yoann Guény
11-22-2023 6:09 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

Listen to the BirdsBy Donald Kroodsma, Léna Mazilu, and Yoann Guény; W.W. Norton & Co. Donald Kroodsma, a leading expert on the science of birdsong, once taught biology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. But the Valley writer and scientist...


Fresh exhibits bloom at Valley galleries as colleges reopen
09-11-2023 10:18 AM

By STEVE PFARRER

September brings hordes of college students back to the Valley — as well as new art exhibits. Here’s a selected look at what’s on tap at several local campuses, as well as some area galleries.University Museum of Contemporary Art, University of...


Book Bag: ‘Beyond the Monuments in Washington, D.C.’ by Michael Jacobson-Hardy; ‘The Sky We Shared’ by Shirley Reva Vernick
09-06-2023 7:51 PM

By STEVE PFARRER

The Sky We Shapedby Shirley Reva VernickCinco Puntos PressAmherst author Shirley Reva Vernick has written a number of Young Adult novels based on historical events, including her debut book, “The Blood Lie,” a story of an incident in an upstate New...

Displaying articles 41 to 60 out of 131 total.
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