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Fifty-five writers, including many well-known former residents, and six photographers contribute to a new collection of stories about Buffalo. The book is called "Right Here, Right Now: The Buffalo Anthology" (Belt Publishing, 237 pages, $19.99). It's edited by Jody K. Biehl, who directs the journalism program at the University at Buffalo. The book is the seventh in …

In an age when even toddlers have I-Pads in crashproof rubber cases, loaded with games and their personalized NetFlix account, a case can still be made for the tactile experience of words on paper, for turning pages, for the gorgeous full-page illustrations of a bound book. Among the wonderful book offerings from publishers this year are: Christmas books Margaret …

Beyond any reasonable doubt, the finest popular music-related tome to hit the book shelves this year was Bruce Springsteen’s autobiographical “Born to Run,” a game-changing work notable for, among many other qualities, kicking the notion that “rock stars need ghost writers” straight to the curb. That Springsteen can write was not a surprise. That he writes that l…

The best thing about giving books as gifts is also the worst thing about them: they're so personal. You've got to be very careful about what your gift book says to your recipient. If, for instance, you give a new John Grisham novel to a spouse who's a reluctant reader of anything at all just because you want to read it, your spouse will be able to guess their true (seco…

This year has brought a bumper crop of cookbooks for deserving people in your life. I’ve got suggestions appropriate for the armchair traveler and sensation-hunters, the home cook looking for new ideas, and the accomplished cook looking to add more flavor to their year. There’s also a love letter to Harlem, in words and recipes, from one of New York City’s star…

The delightful thing about home decor books is that you not only can get ideas on how to decorate, you also can decorate with them. It's the same with fashion books. Usually oversized with eye-catching covers, they command a strong presence on the coffee table or artfully arranged bookcase. This season's roundup includes some real beauties but there's also a practical g…

Frequent Buffalo News reviewers picked their favorite books among all those they had reviewed in 2016. Barkskins, by Annie Proulx, Scribner, 713 pages, $32. If ever there was a book for yuletide giving, it is Annie Proulx’ majestic “Barkskins” – a novel so exciting, timely and readable that, even at 713 pages, one doesn’t want it to end. For here, in a single …

Culture is what sustains us in uncertain times. So we can be thankful that even in the annus horribilis of 2016 -- when so many of our great artists, musicians and cultural forces departed for greener pastures -- yielded an astounding collection of worthy books. Whether you're interested in more deeply exploring local treasures like the Albright-Knox Art Gallery…

NON-FICTION Bellevue: Three Centuries of Medicine and Mayhem at America’s Most Storied Hospital By David Oshinsky Doubleday 387 pages, $30 Pulitzer Prize winner David Oshinsky is out with the remarkable story of Bellevue Hospital on New York City’s East Side. It’s the place where we usually think only the poor are taken for treatment. What a mistake. …

Novel Every Man For Himself By Mark Hannon Apprentice House Press 427 pages, $19.99 There aren’t many Buffalonians around who still remember the infamous “Pinball Scandal” of the early 1950s. More than six decades ago, many Buffalo bars and restaurants had pinball machines that could be mechanically rigged into gambling devices. In terms of taking p…

"In Sunlight Or In Shadow: Stories Inspired by the Paintings of Edward Hopper," edited by Lawrence Block, Pegasus, 277 pages, $25.95. The Mystery Writers of America have a nice Renaissance Craftsman-like way of recognizing the worthiest among their fellow craftsmen. They call them “Grandmasters.” Lawrence Block, who grew up on the corner of Starin and Parkside av…

Nonfiction The Daily Show (The Book); By Chris Smith, Foreword by Jon Stewart; Grand Central Publishing, 459 pages ($30) The great ones have a way of making it look easy. Think of Joe Montana throwing a touchdown pass or Frank Sinatra singing a Cole Porter tune. For more than 16 years on “The Daily Show,” Jon Stewart made it look easy. Now a new book chroni…

MEMOIR Settle For More by Megyn Kelly; HarperCollins, 340 pages ($29.99) For journalists, especially on a national level trying to gauge the temperature surrounding a Donald Trump presidency, the information contained in Megyn Kelly’s new memoir offers little hope of a smooth ride over the next four to eight years. In fact, “Settle For More” may send the merc…

William Faught's black-and-white and color photographs take center stage in "Allentown: A Photographic Journey in the Heart of Buffalo, NY" (Buffalo Heritage Limited, 102 pages, $49.95/$29.95). Faught is a retired architect and urban planner, and Allentown is his adopted home. He lives on Irving Place, but grew up a world away in Arkansas. Living in the Washington, …