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  • Moral Quandaries

    By Tom Tugend

    March 30, 2000 | 7:00 pm

    Bernhard Schlink is not what you would expect in a German judge and professor of constitutional law. He is a tall, sparse man of 55, dressed in an open-necked shirt and devoid of the traditional Teutonic self-importance bestowed by rank and title.

    He enjoyed his guest stint on "Oprah...

  • Chanukah Calendar

    By Rob Kutner

    December 2, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    When the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles celebrated the launch of its anti-illiteracy program KOREH Los Angeles in September, the focus was on educators and celebrities to read children's books to kids. Meanwhile, on the outskirts of the spotlight at that event were some...
  • Mothers and Daughters

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    White Oleander

    By Janet Fitch

    Little, Brown, $24..

    When author Janet Fitch was 9, her longtime friend disappeared into the netherworld of the Los Angeles foster care system.

    The girl's mother had died, then her father and an elderly aunt. When her older brother, a junkie, was arrested,...

  • One Rabbi’s Book Tour

    By Rob Eshman

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    I am watching my wife with Matt Lauer. She is on "The Today Show," sitting across from the handsome host, both of them locked on each other's eyes the way beautiful people lock eyes on, well, television.

    It's a strange thing, sitting on our couch alone watching Matt Lauer with my...

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  • Festival Becomes Eclectic

    By Wendy J. Madnick

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    The tale of an orphan's search for acceptance. A lawyer's fantasy of a Holocaust survivor's revenge. A book that may save your marriage.

    These are just a few of the interesting choices made for this year's People of the Book Festival.

    Featuring more than 30 authors, including Nathan...

  • Alan Dershowitz’s Guilty Pleasure

    By Hillel Halkin

    November 4, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    Just Revenge

    By Alan Dershowitz

    Warner, $24.95.

    Where does he find the time? A typical day in his life, so it seems, includes several hours put in as defense counsel in a headline-making trial; a class or two taught at Harvard Law School, a few appearances on nationally televised talk...

  • Party of Six

    By Tom Tugend

    October 14, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Perhaps no professional marriage counselor has a surer grip than Neil Simon on the unending nuances and permutations of the marital state.

    Both from personal experience -- he recently introduced what I believe is his fourth wife at the Skirball Cultural Center -- and through some 30...

  • Uncle Vanya’ Hits Sour Note; ‘Amadeus’ in Perfect Harmony

    By Gene Lichtenstein

    October 14, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    No one ever said Anton Chekhov was an easy fit for American actors. In Chekhov, there may be scoundrels, but no villains; interesting, appealing women, but no heroine; a central figure perhaps, but flawed. Under the surface, it is the human condition that he unfolds for us.

    In the...

  • Learning From Loss

    By Diane Arieff

    September 23, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    When painful loss occurs in our lives, we want to make some sense of it: Why did she get so sick? Why did I lose my livelihood? Why can't we conceive a child? Why did he die? In his new book, "Making Loss Matter: Creating Meaning in Difficult Times" (Riverhead Books, $23.95), David...
  • The Lost Bird

    By Sandee Brawarsky

    September 9, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Yvette Melanson is a woman who might say the Sh'ma before going to sleep, and in the morning light whisper the Navajo prayer, "May I walk happily and lightly on the earth." Both are deeply felt, authentic expressions of her soul. As she explains, "I know that I'm Jewish. I feel...
  • “Anne Frank” for Teens

    By  Orit Arfa

    August 5, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Contemporary Holocaust literature for young adults seems to favor a theme: transport unaware teenagers to German-occupied Europe and, together with the characters, the readers will emerge as more sensitive, aware young adults.

    The book, and recent Showtime drama, The Devil's...

  • House of Memory

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    July 22, 1999 | 7:59 pm

    For Chilean-Jewish author and activist Marjorie Agosin, to be a Latin American Jew is to live forever in exile, to be "always from somewhere else."

    Her 1990 memoir, "A Cross and a Star," tells the story of her mother's family, which escaped the Holocaust only to settle in a remote...

  • A Dog Tale

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    July 1, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    Author Paul Auster and his daughter, Sophie, were strolling on Seventh Avenue in Brooklyn one day when they spotted a woman standing beside a skinny, scruffy, fearful, "completely ravaged" golden-yellow dog. Around its neck hung a sign: "Please adopt me. I need a home."

    The mutt was...

  • Tom Friedman’s New World Order

    By Rob Eshman

    April 15, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    It was 1984. A tough, tight-lipped Israeli army colonel was leading a small group of journalists on a tour of southern Lebanon, where Israel was in the midst of a war. The journalists wore army-issue flak jackets. They listened and took notes, as if taking dictation. One...
  • On the Lone Prairie

    By Marlene Adler Marks

    April 15, 1999 | 8:00 pm

    When I consider author Sara Davidson's now-so-public love affair with a cowboy who didn't know about Anne Frank, I can hear my mother saying, "Honey, you could do so much better."

    To which Davidson's response would surely be, "Show me how."

    Davidson's new fictionalized memoir,...

  • Making It: Max Frankel and Henry Kissinger

    March 25, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    I have been reading two books lately, sort of shifting from one to the other -- a bad habit, I know, but it has been with me too long to correct at this point. The books are Henry Kissinger's "Years of Renewal," an indecent 1,151 pages, all about foreign policy during Gerald Ford's...
  • Dark Humor Guides Author

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 18, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    "I despise 'Schindler's List' because it ends on a redemptive note, and I don't see the slightest bit of redemption in the Shoah...There's all this nonsense out there about healing, but I don't want to heal anything. I want to rip open the stitches. I want readers to bleed."

    Don't...

  • Judaism Between the Sheets

    By Diane Arieff

    March 18, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    In these scandalous times, is there anything left to say about sex?

    TV offers us All-Monica all the time. The globally accessible Internet offers its own virtual red-light district. Surrounded by wall-to-wall visuals and 24-hour media blather, we're inundated with sexual information....

  • Art Imitating Life for Mystery Writer

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 11, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    The idea for Rochelle Majer Krich's new mystery, "Blood Money," goes back to the day she discovered some startling photographs in her parents' china closet.

    Krich, then 13, saw her father with an elegantly dressed woman beside a baby carriage holding a baby girl. "'That's Gusta,...

  • Rebel with Another Cause

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    January 14, 1999 | 7:00 pm

    Think Jean-Claude van Itallie, and you think, "icon of the 1960s."

    He is a legendary figure in the downtown New York theater scene and the author of "American Hurrah," considered to be a watershed political play of the Vietnam War era.

    Of late, the 62-year-old playwright has also...

  • Becoming a Best Seller

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    November 5, 1998 | 7:00 pm

    While cities such as Detroit and St. Louis were holding major Jewish book festivals year after year, drawing celebrity authors such as Saul Bellow and Philip Roth, observers here asked, Why isn't there a Jewish book festival in Los Angeles?

    Seville Porush and her colleagues at the...

  • A Committed Life

    By Judy R. Gruen

    October 22, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    For as long as she can remember, Dr. Beth Karlan has been driven to answer one elusive question: what is the difference between a normal cell and a cancerous cell? While the question is common among medical researchers, Karlan's progress in discovering at least a partial answer has...
  • Arts

    By Rob Eshman

    August 13, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    Explaining Hitler: An Interview with Ron Rosenbaum

    By Rob Eshman, Managing Editor

    If you were alive in 1918 and bumped into an undistinguished German army corporal named Adolf Hitler, wouldn't you have been duty-bound to murder him? Just more than 10 years...

  • The Arts

    By Curt Schleier

    June 4, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    "Robert F. Kennedy: A Memoir" is a balanced, warts-and-allportrait of the slain politician. Above, right, Kennedy and his sevensiblings with parents Joe and Rose. Above, Robert and brother John in1959. Below, Kennedy on the campaign trail, shortly before his 1968death.

    When...

  • Beyond ‘Schindler’sList’

    By Tom Tugend

    May 7, 1998 | 8:00 pm

    "He was a satyr, a black marketeer, a drunk and a savior."

    The pithy description by author Thomas Keneallyrefers, of course, to Oskar Schindler, the flawed but ultimatelyheroic German businessman who saved his 1,200 Jewish employees duringthe Holocaust.

    The man and the myth will be...

  • The Arts

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    April 19, 1998 | 8:00 pm


    Far Beyond Tears

    For his portrayal of Primo Levi in'The Truce,' John Turturro tried to approach the subject as Levidoes: delicately and subtly

    By Naomi Pfefferman,

    Senior Writer

    In March 1996, John Turturro packed a trunk filledwith Primo Levi's books and traveled to a remote part of...

  • The Editor’s Corner

    By Gene Lichtenstein

    April 2, 1998 | 7:00 pm

    My problem with Dennis Prager, author, radio host,newsletter writer, is simple: I like the man, but I just can't readhis writing. In person, I find him open, engaging, serious. In print,he comes across to me as narrow-minded, ponderous and self-involved.I usually settle my conflict...

  • Honoring Thy Mother

    By Linda Feldman

    January 15, 1998 | 7:00 pm

    I called my mother to wish her a happynew year. She answered the phone like this: "Commo say yammo." "Mom,why are you speaking in bad Spanish?" I asked. "I've been gettinghang-up calls, so I'm sabotaging my voice," she answered. I broke uplaughing.

    My mother bought my book retail,...

  • All in the Family

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    November 13, 1997 | 7:00 pm

    Theater

    All in the Family

    Annie Reiner is more than just Rob's sister

    By Naomi Pfefferman, Senior Writer

    Author Annie Reiner is tall, elegant, poised -- and politelyexasperated when you ask about her famous father and brother.

    You can hardly blame her: It's the umpteenth time she's...

  • Wolpe Reaches Sinai

    By Tom Tugend

    July 24, 1997 | 8:00 pm

    Rabbi David J. Wolpe, along with his wife and 6-month-old daughter, arrived in Los Angeles from New York on June 30.

    On July 1, he was at his desk to start his new job as senior rabbi of Sinai Temple in Westwood, the oldest and one of the most prominent Conservative congregations in...

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