Author Archives: John Walters

Book Review: Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis by Jared Diamond

One of the most important nonfiction books of the late nineteenth century is Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond. In it, the author posits that environmental variables rather than inherent differences in ability were … Continue reading

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On Rereading The Writing Life by Annie Dillard

I’ve read several of Annie Dillard’s books. I like her writing style, and I appreciate her philosophical observations mixed with comments on nature. I’ve read The Writing Life before too, but the last time was several years ago in Greece. … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal West by David McCullough

The Pioneers tells a compelling story. After the Revolutionary War, Great Britain ceded the vast Northwest Territory to the fledgling country of the United States. This included the area that would comprise the future states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Best of R.A. Lafferty

R.A. Lafferty is an anomaly not only in the world of speculative fiction, but also in literature in general. Although he has won major awards, he is all but unknown outside the genre world. He has an idiosyncratic style that … Continue reading

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Book Review: I, Asimov: A Memoir by Isaac Asimov

Isaac Asimov was an amazingly prolific writer. Although he is probably best known for his science fiction novels and stories – the Foundation series, for instance – he wrote and edited over five hundred books on a wide range of … Continue reading

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The Literary Pilgrimage

Most people, when they take off on holiday, look for warm beaches with clear waters for swimming, or cool forests for picnics and hiking, or foreign cities with unique sights. Alternatively, they crave raucous amusement parks or luxury cruises or … Continue reading

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Book Review: Fault Lines: A History of the United States Since 1974 by Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer

As soon as I first picked up this volume of modern history, I knew it was going to be important to me. I put my name on the reserve list at the library (still poverty-stricken here, folks) and patiently waited … Continue reading

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Eulogy for My Father

I’m writing this as my father John Walters, Sr., now ninety years old, lies bedridden and uncommunicative. I will not publish it until after he has died. If you’re reading it, therefore, it means that he is no longer alive … Continue reading

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Apocalypse Bluff and Other Stories

Apocalypse Bluff and Other Stories, my eighth short story collection, was recently published. Pick up a copy at one of the links below. As invading aliens unleash monsters resembling mutated carnivores to devour all of human life on Earth, an … Continue reading

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Book Review: A Place of My Own: The Architecture of Daydreams by Michael Pollan

Michael Pollan burst into my awareness with his brilliant recent book How to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence. In reading about the author of this amazing study, … Continue reading

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