Lake Effect

Alexandra Fuller’s 2001 memoir, Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, offered a first-hand girl’s view of life in British-run Rhodesia as it transitioned violently into independent Zimbabwe and civil war played out in nearby Mozambique. It won fans around the world. Her mother was not one of them.

Mitch Teich

Have you ever looked at a painting in an art gallery and wished you could become part of the world the artist created? Certainly, it’d be nice to spend some time in Claude Monet’s world, and it would be an adventure to make your way through an M.C. Esher drawing. photo

  Many people who live in the city or suburbs have had the somewhat romantic notion of giving up the rat race and buying a place in the country... maybe getting some chickens, growing some of your own food. It's tempting, especially after you've sat in rush hour traffic for a while. But what does it really take to make that pipe dream a viable option?

image courtesy of the author

The page of the country's newspapers can sometimes be rough - stories of crime and mayhem, contentious politics, and - depending your rooting interests - losing sports teams.  But fortunately, there are always the comics to fall back on, some literal comic relief in the midst of everything else.

image courtesy of the author

Jennifer DuBois's new novel asks the central question, How do you keep going when you know things are going to end badly? The book is A Partial History of Lost Causes (Random House, 2012).  

There is No Dog

Mar 20, 2012

Meg Rosoff is the author of There Is No Dog, published by Penguin. She spoke with Bonnie North.  Rosoff's other novels include the multiple award winning How I Live Now, the film of which is currently in pre-production, and the Carnegie Medal in Literature winner Just in Case. There is more of their conversation about Dog below. Just click on the supplemental audio file.

A Dachshund's Tale

Mar 1, 2012

We hear about a wiener of a children’s book about a presidentially named Dachshund. Mequon children's book writer Barbara Behm is the author of Mr. Lincoln Goes to Washington, published by Xlibris. It's illustrated by Milwaukeean Ellen Anderson, and it was given an honorable mention in the 2011 Writer's Digest Awards program.

Book App Astrojammies Blasts into Hardcover

Dec 10, 2011

A children's book application that's led the charge in combining literature and technology gets a hardcover edition. Stacey Williams-Ng is the author and illustrator of the interactive children's book Astrojammies, which is now available as a hardcover print book. It was first published as a book app for the iPad by Chicago-based Demibooks – where Williams-Ng is now Creative Director.

Artifacts of Life

Dec 10, 2011

A new novel combines mysterious artifacts, an import shop... and yoga? Mary Dally-Muenzmaier's debut novel is called Artifacts, published by Cerebral Bends Productions. That's a creative services company Dally-Muenzmaier launched in 2003 with her husband. She is also the communications coordinator at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music and blogs about Wisconsin art and culture at CricketToes.

We learn how one woman's cells changed the course of medicine. Rebecca Skloot is the author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, published by Crown. She'll be the keynote speaker tomorrow at "An Evening to Promote Racial Justice," presented by the YWCA of Greater Milwaukee. Rebecca Skloot lives in Chicago, and spoke with Lake Effect's Mitch Teich.

Gutekunst, Frederick (1831-1917) [Public domain]

We learn about the secret surgery Grover Cleveland underwent and the daring reporter who tried to expose it. 

CBC photo

We’ll go north of the border and meet the creator of The Vinyl Café and the engaging inhabitants thereof. 

Milwaukee's Port at Heart of Commerce, City's Soul

Jan 14, 2011
The History Press

Please note: This interview originally aired Jan. 14, 2011.

While the Port of Milwaukee is not in the heart of the city, it may just be the heart of its commerce.

Celebrated actor Alan Alda was in Milwaukee last month to read from his new book, Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself. He spoke with Bonnie North.

Lake Effect

Alan Alda first rose to fame as Hawkeye Pierce on the TV show, "M*A*S*H*". He also hosted "Scientific American Frontiers" on PBS, and more recently starred as Senator Arnold Vinnick on the NBC drama, "The West Wing". Alda has also acted and written for the silver screen and for the stage. He was in Milwaukee to speak at Alverno College as part of a series sponsored by Schwartz Bookshops. His book, "Never Have Your Dog Stuffed", has just been released in paperback.