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t’s been a good couple of years for Grover.A new book, “The Forgotten Conservative: Rediscovering Grover Cleveland,” by John M. Pafford, lays out Cleveland’s life and makes the case that the two-term president – in nonconsecutive periods, as 22nd and 24th of our chief executives – was both a deeply Christian man and a more conservative president than he is given credit for…

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Principal Robert Clemens doesn’t use the word “throwback” to describe his disciplined style of running an elementary school. Instead, when he tries to explain why his Buffalo P.S. 81 on Tacoma Avenue consistently earns the state title of “School in Good Standing,” Clemens simply calls himself a dinosaur.He maintains order and academic excellence among almost 800 students w…

Monday, 6 p.m.: Book talk and book signing with Amy Stewart, author of “The Drunken Botanist: The Plants that Create the World’s Great Drinks” (Algonquin Books). Stewart is the award-winning author of five best-selling books on the perils and pleasures of the natural world, including “Wicked Plants” and “Wicked Bugs.” Mike A’s at the Hotel Lafayette, 391 Washington St.Tues…

Dear Tom and Ray: I have a 5-gallon gas can that has an old-style spout, which used to have a bright-yellow cap. The cap got lost, so I got a rubber stopper to put in the end, to prevent vapors from escaping when not in use. Well, last night I put some gas in the car from this can, and not thinking, I forgot to take off the rubber stopper. You guessed it, the gas did not p…

Dear Abby: I am writing you not because of a problem, but because of two special people in my life. I have two daughters, both in their 20s. They are well-educated and happy. I adore them. My wife and I consider ourselves lucky to be their parents. We never pushed them toward goals or to succeed, but they are self-motivated and confident.I have come to the conclusion that …

Dear Miss Manners: My husband and I have been married 12 1/2 years. He once lost his original wedding band, and we got another one. (Maybe 10-plus years ago – a while back.)Today, he “surprised” me with his Father’s Day gift of a new wedding band. His replaced one had gotten too small and needed to be resized. Obviously, the salesman was a good one.Truth is, I love it – it…

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The Silver StarBy Jeannette WallsScribner269 pages, $26 By Karen BradyNews Book ReviewerThere is nothing subtle about Jeannette Walls’ latest novel, an obvious and often heavy-handed offering called “The Silver Star.”But – like Walls’ memoir, “The Glass Castle,” and her first novel, “Half-Broke Horses” – “The Silver Star” has the selfsame hardscrabble pluck that landed tho…

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The Guns at Last Light: The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945By Rick AtkinsonHenry Holt877 pages, $40By Stephen T. WatsonNews Book reviewerOn June 6, 1944, a massive armada crossed the English Channel to begin the long-awaited Allied attempt to win back Western Europe from its German conquerors.Eleven months later, on May 7, 1945, a group of German generals representing wha…

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By Michael D. Langan

Sat, Jun 15, 2013

“And The Mountains Echoed,” Khaled Hosseini’s new multigenerational novel, is about the love of brothers and sisters and extended family. Hosseini was born in Afghanistan in 1965 and settled with his family in San Jose, Calif., in 1980. He became a physician and is now a U.S. citizen. Hosseini says that such a love isn’t perfect. The result is that family members also “wou…

Sleepless in Hollywood by Lynda Obst, Simon and Schuster, 283 pages, $26. On Page 132 of this book, we learn that Nora Ephron – the “best writer” Lynda Obst knew before Ephron’s death and Obst’s “dearest friend” – thought that Lisa Kudrow was a genius. “And, in fact, [she] is,” adds Obst.If you understand that as the purview you’re spending almost 300 pages with here, you’…

CHILDREN’sThe Apprentices by Maile Meloy; illustrations by Ian Schoenherr; G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 432 pages ($16.99). Ages 10 and up....Meloy performed a kind of alchemy in “The Apothecary,” her wondrous 2011 novel, set in 1952, of an apothecary, his son Benjamin and Benjamin’s friend Jane, using a rare old book The Pharmacopoeia - with its secrets of plant elixirs and ways t…

FICTION1. Inferno. Dan Brown. Doubleday, $29.952. And the Mountains Echoed. Khaled Hosseini. Riverhead, $28.95 3. Zero Hour. Cussler/Brown. Putnam, $28.95. 4. Revenge Wears Prada. Lauren Weisberger. Simon & Schuster, $25.99 5. Deeply Odd. Dean Koontz. Bantam, $28. 6. The Kill Room. Jeffery Deaver. Grand Central, $28 7. Ladies Night. Mary Kay Andrews. St. Martin’s,…

– sonnenizio based on a first line by Molly PeacockBy Jennifer Campbell And nothing, not even that girl you lovewill follow you into that even darkening: old age.It’s an unreachable, shadowy cupboard that girlyou love, in her flip-flops and youthful distraction,cannot begin to explore. And she doesn’t even try,just a feeble grasp at a handle, and then your love –your affai…

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As an official “Aunt,” I’ve noticed a few things about kids:Yes, they love the fast and furious, but they also love the cheesy and silly, too (even if they won’t admit it). Which brings us to the fantastic world of quirky, historic amusement parks.Many started during the 19th century as “trolley parks” – usually picnic or recreational areas located at the end of a streetca…

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When Dominic T. Telesco and Patty A. Herbst were preparing for their wedding, Patty’s daughter, Erin Culligan-Gagen, offered her own wedding dress for the occasion. She knew how much her mother liked it – when they first selected the dress, Patty recalled, “I think I liked it more than she did at first.”Still, Patty was hesitant about this reversal of tradition.“I felt lik…