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Loud and Clear
Cover of Loud and Clear
Loud and Clear
Borrow Borrow
In this remarkable book, Anna Quindlen, one of America’s favorite novelists and a Pulitzer Prize– winning columnist, once again gives us wisdom, opinions, insights, and reflections about current events and modern life. “Always insightful, rooted in everyday experience and common sense...Quindlen is so good that even when you disagree with what she says, you still love the way she says it,” said People magazine about her number one New York Times bestseller Thinking Out Loud, and the same can be said about Loud and Clear.

With her trademark insight and her special ability to convey the impact public events have on ordinary lives, Quindlen here combines commentary on American society and the world at large with reflections on being a woman, a writer, and a mother. In these pieces, first written for Newsweek and The New York Times, Loud and Clear takes on topics ranging from social change to raising children, from the political and emotional aftermath of September 11 to personal values, from the impact on individuals of global events to the growth that can be gained by spending summer days staring into the middle distance. Grounding the public in the private, connecting people to each other and to the greater world, Quindlen encourages us to develop authentic lives, even as she serves as a catalyst for political and social change.

“Anna Quindlen’s beat is life, and she’s one hell of a terrific reporter,” said Susan Isaacs, and Quindlen’s unique qualities of understanding and discernment, everywhere evident in her previous bestsellers, including A Short Guide to a Happy Life and Living Out Loud, can be found on every page of this provocative and inspiring book.
In this remarkable book, Anna Quindlen, one of America’s favorite novelists and a Pulitzer Prize– winning columnist, once again gives us wisdom, opinions, insights, and reflections about current events and modern life. “Always insightful, rooted in everyday experience and common sense...Quindlen is so good that even when you disagree with what she says, you still love the way she says it,” said People magazine about her number one New York Times bestseller Thinking Out Loud, and the same can be said about Loud and Clear.

With her trademark insight and her special ability to convey the impact public events have on ordinary lives, Quindlen here combines commentary on American society and the world at large with reflections on being a woman, a writer, and a mother. In these pieces, first written for Newsweek and The New York Times, Loud and Clear takes on topics ranging from social change to raising children, from the political and emotional aftermath of September 11 to personal values, from the impact on individuals of global events to the growth that can be gained by spending summer days staring into the middle distance. Grounding the public in the private, connecting people to each other and to the greater world, Quindlen encourages us to develop authentic lives, even as she serves as a catalyst for political and social change.

“Anna Quindlen’s beat is life, and she’s one hell of a terrific reporter,” said Susan Isaacs, and Quindlen’s unique qualities of understanding and discernment, everywhere evident in her previous bestsellers, including A Short Guide to a Happy Life and Living Out Loud, can be found on every page of this provocative and inspiring book.
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Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    8.6
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
    UG
  • Text Difficulty:
    7

Recommended for you

Excerpts-
  • Preface Preface

    ON THE MORNING OF SEPTEMBER 11, 2001, I was doing what I do as well as anyone I know: that is, not writing. This is an enduring part of my daily routine, something like the unbirth- day party in Through the Looking-Glass. Unlike some of my colleagues—mainly the ones I don’t really care for—I do not fly to my desk each morning with a full heart and a ready hand. I skirt the perimeters of my home office with a sense of dread, eyes averted from an empty computer screen. Instead of creation there is always procrastination: the call to my closest friend to chew over the morning paper and to gossip, which sometimes comes to the same thing; the power walk in Central Park and the interlude at Starbucks—my husband calls it Four-bucks—and the triple venti no-foam latte. Luckily the laundry room is five stories below my office, or I could surely eke out another half hour folding sheets and T-shirts. Several years ago my daughter downloaded a computer game called Snood onto my laptop and for months, before I had used up all the demonstration games, I played over and over in single-minded pursuit of nothing more than a position on a scoreboard that only I ever saw and on which I was known as Big Mama. Eventually I deleted the program. I had developed a terrible Tetris problem a decade earlier that had enabled me to put off writing until well past 10:00 a.m., and I could see which way things were headed.

    I am a creature of habit; it is all that allows me to write in the first place, the routine designed to ward off the moment, and then the moment itself, when the first feeble sentence, often merely a prelude to better things, appears as my fingers play word jazz on the keyboard. What follows is usually a manic two or three hours fed by caffeine and the CD of the moment. Sondheim, Tori Amos, Rosemary Clooney, James Taylor, Alanis Morissette. I did not want to learn to type, but the nuns insisted, saying someday I might marry a man who would need his papers typed or be employed by a man who needed the same done to his business letters. My fingers are the only sure-handed things about me when I first sit down to write. After all those years in newsrooms I am a very fast typist indeed, as fast as any executive secretary.

    But it was the variation from routine that enables me to remember that morning in particular, remember it before it became the morning of the most important day in the history of the United States during my lifetime. It was my eldest child’s eighteenth birthday, and that morning at breakfast his father and I had recalled with clarity and more than a little schmaltz the stiflingly hot morning when he had arrived, limp and gray after a forceps delivery. Twelve days before we had left him at college for the first time, and we were still smarting from the fissure in our family. Before we got into the car and drove away, we reminded him yet again that when he turned eighteen he was obliged by law to go to the post office and register with the Selective Service. Neither of us felt any fear when we told him to do that; it seemed almost quaint, that particular demand at that moment in time from the two of us, the former boy who had lived through the Vietnam draft lottery, the former girlfriend who had stood by breathless waiting for his number to come up, the young couple exhaling in relief after. If I had thought there was any chance my son would be forced to go to war, I would have bought him a ticket to Canada instead of driving him to Connecticut.

    There were two other reasons that I remember that morning so clearly as well. The day before my daughter and I had attended the funeral of a family friend in...

About the Author-
  • ANNA QUINDLEN is the bestselling author of four novels (Blessings, Black and Blue, One True Thing, and Object Lessons) and four nonfiction books (A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Living Out Loud, Thinking Out Loud, and How Reading Changed My Life). She has also written two children’s books (The Tree That Came to Stay and Happily Ever After). Her New York Times column “Public and Private” won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992. Her column now appears every other week in Newsweek.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    February 23, 2004
    Bestselling author Quindlen (One True Thing
    ; A Short Guide to a Happy Life
    ; etc.), a veteran reporter and winner of the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, couldn't have picked a more apt title for her latest collection of columns from Newsweek
    and the New York Times
    . Whether or not readers agree with Quindlen's opinions on everything from youth culture to gun control, these razor-sharp musings will open avenues of debate and discussion long after the book is closed. Quindlen is at the top of her game when she turns her eagle eye on the tiny threads that make up the fiber of domestic life. After all, "The world of children and child-rearing is social history writ small but indelible, whether it's the minutia of Barbie dolls and Power Ranger action figures or the phenomenon of books like Harry Potter
    or The Cat in the Hat
    . It's a shared experience, not just for the children but for their parents, and a snapshot of where we were then." The only weak link in this memorable book is the scant connective tissue between sections. Quindlen divides the essays by theme—heart, mind, soul, voice and body—and while the individual pieces shine, the overviews of each topic provide thin explanations for why they are grouped this way. Overall, however, this is not a matter of great concern. Quindlen's columns speak for themselves, loud and clear. (On sale Apr. 6)

    Forecast:
    Although all of these essays have been previously published, the book should still attract an enormous number of buyers. National TV and radio interviews in New York and Washington, D.C., as well as print ads and a chapter sampler promo, will ensure high visibility.

  • Library Journal

    December 1, 2003
    Quintessential Quindlen: columns of recent vintage.

    Copyright 2003 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Booklist

    February 1, 2004
    In her first retrospective essay collection since " Thinking Out Loud" (1993), best-selling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Quindlen continues to unscramble gnarly social issues with splendid clarity and pithiness, wit and compassion, and uncommon common sense. As always, the autobiographical energizes her persuasive arguments and sense of justice, and Quindlen writes with her signature candor about her children's metamorphoses into young adults, her decision to give up her prestigious " New York Times" column to write novels, including " Blessings "(2002), her felicitous return to journalism as the back-page columnist for " Newsweek," and her experiences of September 11 and its aftermath. So true is Quindlen's moral compass, and so lucid, vital, and forward-looking are her insights, that her opinion pieces not only stand the test of time but also provide an invaluable gauge of where we've been and where we're going. Here are probing essays about "overscheduled" children and homeless children, the tremendous advances women have achieved and the persistence of misogyny and sexual aggression, personality and politics, gun laws, tobacco wars, women's health issues, Barbie, pedophile priests, and Iraq. A valiant writer who addresses every aspect of our lives with both gravitas and humor, Quindlen is a tonic for mind and soul.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2004, American Library Association.)

  • San Francisco Examiner, about Living Out Loud

    "Quindlen is an astonishingly graceful writer."

  • Boston Sunday Herald, about Thinking Out Loud "Quindlen...has earned her [Pulitzer] Prize and even sounds like somebody who would be fun to have to dinner."
  • Newsday, about Living Out Loud "Quindlen displays...an easy, elegant prose style and a canny eye for small details that reveal larger truths about people and society."
  • Patricia Volk, The New York Times, about Blessings "Anna Quindlen is America's Resident Sane Person. She has what Joyce called the common touch, the ability to speak to many people about what's on their minds before they have the vaguest idea what's on their minds."
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    Random House Publishing Group
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