Read in the Blue Line

Frederick Busch’s writing resonates upstate

“What to know about pain is how little we do to deserve it, how simple it is to give, how hard to lose. I’m a plumber. I dig for what’s wrong. And what I think of now as I remember pain is the fat young man and his child, their staggering house, the basement filled with death and dark ...

A plea for co-existing in the wild

John Davis’ “Split Rock Wildway” is described by the author as being a “scout’s report” on wildlife he has encountered in a specific area of the Adirondacks. However, in describing the book as such, the author is not completely honest. Instead of being only a scout’s report, ...

Come along for the journey in hiking tales

“An Adirondack Portfolio-1902-1935: The Hiking Stories and Photographs of Francis Bayle” --- Many of us may be fortunate enough to own photos taken by earlier generations; a few might also have some old letters. Bob Bayle, a former teacher from Glens Falls, had his own collection of ...

Terrie’s passion for the outdoors is infectious

“Seeing the Forest: Reviews, Musings, and Opinions from an Adirondack Historian,” by Philip Terrie” ---Philip Terrie has been wandering the Adirondacks for 50 years and writing about it for more than 30. His books “Contested Terrain” and “Forever Wild” were instant classics when ...

Book details love story between American journalist and Russian skater

“Maia — A Cold War Novel,” by Richard Manichello --- Richard Manichello’s consistently entertaining “Maia” is a bit like a seven-part Netflix series. “Maia” is a Cold War thriller; a new take on the star-crossed lovers’ story; a story of redemption; a coming of age story ...

‘Buried Secrets’ delivers suspenseful plot twist

“Buried Secrets” by T.J. Brearton is a book that you shouldn’t read late at night. One of the latest books by the Lake Placid author is an intense thriller that keeps the reader on edge until the last chapter. The protagonist, Brett Larson, is a failed journalist turned construction ...

Fire tower book is a good gift for the holidays

“Views From On High,” by John Freeman and Jim Schneider --- Almost as if on schedule, I received a copy of the newly published book, Views From On High: Fire Tower Trials in the Adirondacks and Catskills, by John Freeman and Jim Schneider, in time for consideration as a holiday gift. ...

So much more than just a food writer

“Fasting and Feasting: The Life of Visionary Food Writer Patience Gray,” by Adam Federman --- As sprightly October settled at last into true autumn with its iron gray skies and rain, I enjoyed returning day after day to the extraordinary life of Patience Gray and her many years living ...

Garage sale find tells woman’s long lost tale

“An Extraordinary Ordinary Woman,” by Susan M. Ouellette --- In an era of Facebook and Twitter, it can be a treat to find someone describing their thoughts and activities during an earlier era in longhand. Is it a love of history that makes discovery of a journal that valuable to us? ...

Readers relive author’s childhood with ill brother

“Shadow Child” by Randall Stark Beach, 2017 --- In this engrossing memoir, Altona native Randall Stark Beach details an otherwise unremarkable childhood that suddenly becomes utterly changed when his younger brother is diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. In this sensitively presented ...

Baltimore Orioles provide purpose for dying man

“Final Season,” by Richard Frost (who reviews books for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise), is a first-person novel about baseball and dying. When 55-year-old physician Dan Jameson’s cancer progresses, he rejects further therapies and follows his passion: the Baltimore Orioles. The novel ...

A detective thriller set in Plattsburgh

“Dark Kills,” by T.J. Brearton, is a page-turning whodunit detective story. Set in Plattsburgh and the surrounding communities, the story follows Detective Gates in a race to solve the mystery behind multiple deaths. But the serial killer has another victim tagged to be next. The ...

A guide to the man-made environment

“A Guide to Architecture in the Adirondacks,” by Richard Longstreth --- Adirondack Architectural Heritage, the historic preservation entity for our region, has just released its long-awaited guide to the North Country’s man-made environment. Entitled “A Guide to Architecture in the ...

Love and longing in local poetry book

‘Body of Water’ by Madeline Hennessey, Ra Press, 2017 --- Saranac Lake resident Madeline Hennessey’s book of poems takes off from the double-entendre of its title to dive deep into details of the natural world, absorbed and transformed into poems of memory, longing and ripples of sound. ...

Bryjak creates vivid ‘Voices from the Civil War’

The America Civil War has been chronicled and analyzed so extensively (the SUNY Plattsburgh Feinberg Library, for example, has about 9,000 books related to it) that a writer might be foolhardy to think he can bring new light to the subject. But George Bryjak’s “Voices from the Civil ...

A couple of good reads

Books are beginning to pile up on my desk, so this week I’ve chosen to address two. For my money, New York Archives is one of the most underappreciated magazines around. Inaugurated in 2001, each quarterly issue offers well-written perspectives on aspects of our state’s history. Famous ...

Benson nails retelling of prison escape

Ben Stiller should have talked to Michael Benson. There’s a great risk in retelling true events, especially events of the recent past. Michael Benson wrote “Escape From Dannemora.” He got it right. The book is a heavily annotated text with information drawn from interviews, press ...

College readiness guide could be better

‘College for Every Student: A Practitioner’s Guide’ by Rick Dalton andEdward P. St. John --- In the mid-’90s, President Bill Clinton launched the School-to-Work Opportunities Act, pumping funds into states to implement career awareness/readiness efforts and partnerships with ...