Carmela Ciuraru

  • culture June 03, 2010

    Light Boxes by Shane Jones

    The striking cover image of Shane Jones’s first novel, Light Boxes, is both playful and foreboding, an apt rendering of the novel’s offbeat charm. It reads like a twisted fairy tale. The story follows Thaddeus Lowe, who lives with his wife, Selah, and daughter, Bianca, in an unknown era, in an unnamed town where it is always February, presided over by a godlike character—also named February—who is responsible for the soul-crushing cold and darkness. He’s powerful and mysterious and orders “the end of all things that could fly,” a particularly harsh measure for townspeople who escape the gloom

  • culture July 02, 2009

    The Bolter by Frances Osborne

    Had she been a celebrity in our Internet era, her scandalous lifestyle would have caused an even greater frenzy. Still, Lady Idina Sackville managed to stir plenty of shock and controversy in the tabloid newspapers of Edwardian England. Charming, intelligent, rich and seductive, Sackville was a descendant of one of England's oldest families, taking lovers and husbands as she pleased, eventually marrying and divorcing five times.

    The title of a new biography, "The Bolter," written by her great-granddaughter Frances Osborne, comes from Sackville's habit of "bolting" from relationships once she