Post-Tribune Latest news from Post-Tribune Online en-us (Editor) Post-Tribune 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Chicagoans test their skills on ‘America’s Best Cook’ ]]> Lead story image

LORI RACKL: Kitchen amateurs Stephanie Goldfarb and Ramzi Khairallah take on culinary challenges on the new Food Network competition. ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 02:20:36 -0500 <![CDATA[ Puppy mischief abounds in these funny dog tales ]]> Lead story image

Let’s meet some dogs. We begin by learning about “Charley’s First Night,” by Amy Hest. Anyone who has been through a new pet has shared this experience. Henry tells us that his new puppy Charley wants to be carried home through the snow. Charley is a small yellow dog who gets his way. He is carried home in Henry’s old baby blanket. When they get home, Henry shows Charley all around the house, including Henry’s room, and tells him that his parents have made it very clear that Henry is in charge of Charley. He must walk him and feed … ]]> Sun, 13 Apr 2014 02:11:26 -0500 <![CDATA[ Lollapalooza redefines the experience of a music festival ]]> Lead story image

Another year, another Lollapalooza. And with that came another mad rush for tickets, even before the announcement of a lineup. That’s because, expert say, the powerful destination festival, which attracted 300,000 people last year, is shifting away from its early roots as the irrefutable curator of alternative music into a premium-priced lifestyle event. Giving ticketholders a place to interact, dine, and play for a summer weekend, drives ticket sales as much, if not more, as the music. “It’s the social experience that now matters. One thing you see repeatedly with the most successful festivals is they are all about trying … ]]> Thu, 27 Mar 2014 00:58:55 -0500 <![CDATA[ Larry Yando adds another layer to multifaceted career with ‘Dance’ ]]> Lead story image

You might know him as Scar, the sinister wannabe king in the national touring production of “The Lion King.” Or as an impossibly fierce and smarmy Roy Cohn in Court Theatre’s “Angels in America.” Or as Richard Nixon in “Nixon’s Nixon” at Writers Theatre. Or as Pangloss, the happily deluded philosopher in “Candide,” Shere Khan, the villainous tiger in “The Jungle Book,” and the irresistible Ebenezer Scrooge (a role he has played with relish for six years) all at the Goodman Theatre. Of course the actor in question is Larry Yando. And this week he will be back at Writers … ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 11:26:01 -0500 <![CDATA[ Hand: Planting seeds of knowledge ]]> Lead story image

Well, I do believe that spring has come. I hate to tell you about a book that begins with winter, but stay with me. “Little Pear Tree” by Jenny Bowers is a delightful look at the four seasons and unfortunately begins with winter. This is a board book for the little ones with lots of sturdy flaps to lift and great words to talk about. We follow Little Pear Seed from resting under the ground waiting to sprout to the next winter when it again goes to rest. It grows an awful lot in one year, but a little one … ]]> Sun, 06 Apr 2014 02:07:15 -0500 <![CDATA[ Celebrate spring by reading poetry ]]> Lead story image

I have lived here a very long time and contrary to current belief, spring will come. With spring comes April, and April is Poetry Month. Even though I can’t write them, I do love to read them, especially out loud, as the rhythms and rhymes seem so much better then. Douglas Florian brings us “Poem Depot — Aisles of Smiles,” a collection of poems in the style of Shel Silverstein or Jack Perlutsky. It is divided into chapters which are called “Aisles” and begins with a “Welcome.” Since I “Hate to Wait,” that one expressed my feelings exactly. The narrator … ]]> Sun, 30 Mar 2014 02:05:44 -0500 <![CDATA[ Baby announcement not an order to buy supplies ]]> Lead story image

DEAR MISS MANNERS: My sister eloped and quickly became pregnant. They had intended to announce the marriage to family with a spring visit and small celebration, but instead shared all the news after her first trimester of pregnancy. She is very non-traditional and has never cared to have a wedding or be the center of attention. She waited for a long time before sharing her pregnancy with many people and has been reserved. Similarly, she does not want me to host a shower for her. Regardless, many friends and family will want to celebrate her new happiness, and I do … ]]> Sun, 30 Mar 2014 02:05:54 -0500 <![CDATA[ ‘Divergent’: An intriguing time in a grim future Chicago ]]> Lead story image

BILL ZWECKER: Cast chemistry and a strong portrayal of author Veronica Roth’s dystopic world put “Divergent” a cut above most teen franchises. ]]> Fri, 21 Mar 2014 02:31:23 -0500 <![CDATA[ Crank letters do not necessitate a response ]]> Lead story image

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I work as a secretary at an English department. Somewhat to my surprise, we have been besieged by fringe “academics” who are very adamant that we are part of a conspiracy to cover up the fact that Edward de Vere, Earl of Oxford, was Shakespeare. The professors understandably do not wish to waste their time on this. I personally think the “authorship question” is an incredibly stupid and classist one, but as I am not credentialed, just the person handling incoming general mail, I am not sure what to say. GENTLE READER: Have you thought of responding … ]]> Fri, 28 Mar 2014 22:59:36 -0500 <![CDATA[ Little ones will enjoy these toddler tales ]]> Lead story image

I have several babies in my life right now, little ones, and they do love board books. You know the ones I mean, the ones made out of heavy-duty cardboard that you can throw around and turn the pages without tearing them. Unfortunately for reviewing purposes, they do not have great plots, characters or details to report. I do have a few to share with you, however. I love Leslie Patricelli’s series that includes “Tickle” and “Toot,” “Potty” and “Yummy Yucky.” And yes, “Toot” is about what you think it is. These are about bodily functions that are just being … ]]> Sun, 23 Mar 2014 02:09:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ The cycle of water, from rainstorms  down to bathtubs ]]> Lead story image

I have mixed emotions about rain. I know how important it is to life and all, but I sure don’t like it when I plan a picnic outside. My mother always agreed with the “Camelot” statement that it should only rain in the middle of the night. Gail Gibbons gives us an excellent nonfiction look at this phenomenon in “It’s Raining!” Gibbons specializes in telling kids about “real” things in a clear and fun way. Here, she explains the water cycle and its importance to our lives. She then tells us about the different types of rain clouds and about … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 06:22:35 -0500 <![CDATA[ ‘Ring of Fire’ lacks soul of Johnny Cash’s life ]]> Lead story image

Revue at Theater at the Center sounds terrific but falters whenever the music stops and the attempts at dialogue begin. ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 06:13:04 -0500 <![CDATA[ in the spotlight: Jimbo Mathus ]]> Lead story image

Those who know Mississippi native Jimbo Mathus from his years fronting freewheeling roots music revisionists the Squirrel Nut Zippers, may be surprised by the primal rock sound of his band the Tri-State Coalition. “With the Zippers, I considered us a vaudeville act,” Mathus says. “It was theatrical. This is all go, no show.” “Dark Night of the Soul” is Tri-State’s third album, drawing heavily upon blues and honky-tonk. “The sound is inspired by the stories I’m telling, and by the band itself,” says Mathus. “We’ve got a good, hard rhythm section.” The band will bring Mathus’ topical songs raging to … ]]> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 06:10:20 -0500 <![CDATA[ These books  are for the birds ]]> Lead story image

I have never been a “bird person.” I like to watch them and find them fascinating at a distance but that’s all. I have always had cats and so never wanted to attract birds to be dinner for them. I knew that birds have feathers, of course, but didn’t realize that they are the only animals who do have them. Melissa Stewart tells us all about it in “Feathers — Not Just for Flying.” Most birds have thousands of feathers but they are not all alike. Each bird species has different kinds that serve different purposes. The first-two page spread … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 06:25:41 -0500 <![CDATA[ ‘Son of God’: The Good Shepherd in a not-so-good movie ]]> Lead story image

You feel worse about ripping some films than others. If it’s exploitative dreck or cynical torture porn or a brainless sequel, you just fire away, grateful for the opportunity to vent and to warn movie-lovers to stay away. This is not the case with “Son of God.” You almost wince when reviewing this one. The driving forces behind this miniseries-turned-feature film are the husband-and-wife team of Mark Burnett (creator of such enduring reality series as “Survivor” and “Shark Tank”) and Roma Downey (“Touched by an Angel”), two of the loveliest and most spiritual people it has been my privilege to … ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 06:13:09 -0500 <![CDATA[ Local Buzz for March 7, 2014 ]]> Lead story image

Here is a look at music events. Suggestions include gigs at Blue Chip Casino’s Rocks Lounge in Michigan City, the Venue at Horseshoe Hammond, Majestic Star Casino & Hotel’s Lakeshore Lounge in Gary, and Star Plaza Theatre in Merrillville. ]]> Thu, 06 Mar 2014 15:25:36 -0500