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All Hail the Long-Suffering Cadaver

Once at the center of the murder mystery, the cadaver has become increasingly incidental to the action and now figures as little more than a prop.
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For my complete review of Jennifer Egan's MANHATTAN BEACH published in the New York Times Book Review in October 2017, please visit the New York Times.
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A Glimpse of Stocking

When I was ten, our babysitter Mary Fallon turned on the rarely used kitchen radio to a rock & roll station, and it was never turned off again. Bob Dylan and Bob Seeger; Jimmy Hendrix and Jimmy Page; Keith Richards and Keith Moon: in my teens, I came to know all of these gentlemen quite well, and they have been close friends ever since. But before all of that fine electric guitar and amplified attitude, there was Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Cole Porter Songbook (Verve, 1956).
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This brief interaction in the nether-hour of Closing Time is not simply a setup for a well-crafted song; it is an archetypal American scene. It is a motif that has persisted over a century of our cultural history—appearing as a central image in important works of fiction, music, and film, and serving as a touchstone for a variety of artistic movements spannin
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Though Hopper was active as a painter in New York between the wars—a crowded, volatile and bustling time for the great metropolis—he opted to become a master of the peripheral reverie and the intimate aside. In a quiet café, a young woman sits by herself at a small marble topped table. As a movie plays for patrons, an usherette leans against a wall out of view of the feature. And as the first members of a well-dressed audience assemble, a solitary woman examines her program in her box.
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