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Sep 02nd
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Literature

A&E - Literature

Rags to Riches

Rags to Riches

Jay-Z’s ‘Decoded’ tops our January must-read list
You’ve seen him kickin’ it on the Lakers sideline, holding Beyonce’s hand (he liked it, then he put a ring on it), accepting Grammys and sporting blinding bling purchased with his $450 million net worth—but who is Jay-Z, really?

Born Shawn Corey Carter, the 41-year-old rapper, entrepreneur and partial owner of the New Jersey Nets, seems to have it all: 50 million albums sold, a clothing line (Rocawear), an entertainment company (Roc Nation), a record label (Roc-A-Fella Records) and a smoking hot—not to mention, talented—wife.

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A&E - Literature

The Poems of Nicole Cooley

The Poems of Nicole Cooley

Editor’s note: In this week’s Poetry Corner, we feature the work of Nicole Cooley, who grew up in New Orleans. “Milk Dress,” published by Alice James Books (alicejamesbooks.org), which these poems were selected from, is her fourth book of poems. Cooley directs the MFA program in Creative Writing and Literary Translation at Queens College—City University Of New York. She lives outside New York City with her husband and two young daughters.

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A&E - Literature

Color Me SARK

Color Me SARK

A new book presents life lessons in a striking package
For SARK (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy), nothing is more annoying than being forced to feel glad when you don’t. Sure, challenging things happen all the time and you don’t want to spend your life wallowing, but hiding your emotions or pretending you’re feeling something that you’re not is just as bad.

From the title alone, the well known author’s latest book, “Glad No Matter What: Transforming Loss and Change into Gift and Opportunity,” sounds like a cynic’s nightmare: the self-help book. But it’s not.

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A&E - Literature

Top Winter Reading Picks

Top Winter Reading Picks

Just Kids
The Autobiography of Mark TwainUnbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption
The Essential New York Times Cookbook
Half Empty
Cleopatra: A Life
Too Much Happiness
All Is Forgotten, Nothing Is Lost

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A&E - Literature

The Power of Family

The Power of Family

Local author Julie Morley weaves an inspiring tale of love, loss and reconciliation
Rarely does a book hit as close to home as Julie Morley’s new novel, “Cole Creek.” Not only is the compelling story set in    our very own backyard—with scenes from the Santa Cruz harbor and Big Basin among others—but the enduring tale involves the many nuances of life that we all seem to struggle with. David and Rebecca, a couple that at one time was much in love, are threatened by the winding passage that time and life takes. Their separation is hard on their only child Toni, who as a teenager turns to David’s mother Irene in the absence of her own mother. Rebecca experiences an unendurable loss of self worth, and finds herself in a dangerous situation with a new man who wants to manipulate her life to fit his egomaniacal mold. Twists and turns ensue and are woven into a story that becomes more alive with each chapter. Morley also uses the restorative powers of nature and the innate spirituality possessed by human beings to create redemption and to animate her characters’ lives.

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Mercury Enters Libra

It’s the week of Burning Man, the temporary, intentional, alternative, art-filled community on the playas of Nevada. Mercury, messenger of the Sun, enters Libra this week. Libra is the equalizer, a sign of balance and right human relations. Sometimes with Libra, we can be indecisive and confused while learning how to make balanced and right choices. Sometimes to keep the peace we communicate only what others want to hear. Eventually, we learn how to speak from the heart.

 

Final Cut

Cedar Street Video to close after 10 years at downtown location

 

Banter and Spark

Engaging actors, wry script distinguish lightweight rom-com ‘What If’

 

Back to Silicon Beach

With a new wave of startups, the future of Santa Cruz tech looks more promising than ever
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Foodie File: Beer Thirty

Cups runneth over at Soquel’s new beer garden

 

What’s the nicest thing you’ve done for someone this week?

Germany  |  Beekeeper

 

Best of Santa Cruz County

The 2013 Santa Cruz County Readers' Poll and Critics’ Picks It’s our biggest issue of the year, and in it, your votes—more than 6,500 of them—determined the winners of The Best of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll. New to the long list of local restaurants, shops and other notables that captured your interest: Best Beer Selection, Best Locally Owned Business, Best Customer Service and Best Marijuana Dispensary. In the meantime, many readers were ever so chatty online about potential new categories. Some of the suggestions that stood out: Best Teen Program and Best Web Design/Designer. But what about: Dog Park, Church, Hotel, Local Farm, Therapist (I second that!) or Sports Bar—not to be confused with Bra. Our favorite suggestion: Best Act of Kindness—one reader noted Café Gratitude and the free meals it offered to the Santa Cruz Police Department in the aftermath of recent crimes. Perhaps some of these can be woven into next year’s ballot, so stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the following pages and take note of our Critics’ Picks, too, beginning on page 91. A big thanks for voting—and for reading—and an even bigger congratulations to all of the winners. Enjoy.  -Greg Archer, EditorBest of Santa Cruz County Readers’ Poll INDEX

 

A Cab To Be Coveted

I first tasted Villa del Monte’s 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon at a Fourth of July party, where the hosts had bought a case of it because they love it and didn’t want to run out. It’s one of those wines that will grab you—in the best way—with its full body and rich fruit characteristics.