In 2012, Emma Chichester Clark began chronicling the life of her dog in the Plumdog Blog, an illustrated, often cheeky diary in the voice of Plum, her black “…whoosell, a whippet mixed with Jack Russell and poodle.” Plumdog, Clark’s 2015 book, captures all the fun of the blog and is a delight for dog lovers with its engaging illustrations and text that describes a year in the life of London’s busiest, funniest and most world-wise dog.
In Twisted: My Dreadlock Chronicles, University of Richmond English and American Studies professor Bert Ashe has written about growing his hair into the long, ropy, matted hairstyle largely associated with Rastafarians, reggae musicians, Whoopi Goldberg, and a fair number of college students.
Sarah McCoy’s The Mapmaker’s Children is a good historical novel involving Sarah Brown, daughter of radical abolitionist John Brown who, with his sons and others, raided the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry, Virginia in October 1859, planning to arm slaves with seized weapons.
Freelancer Joan Tupponce reviews “Vania and Sonia and Macha and Spike.”
LaShonda Katrice Barnett’s 2015 debut novel Jam on the Vine is this year’s book to savor. Barnett’s story of early 20th-century African-American woman Ivoe Williams and her goal to empower her people through the written word is hard to put down and easy to recommend.
The story of Frankenstein may have been written by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, but its themes are as old as mankind. It is the story of creation itself. It is the story of the conquering of death. It is the story of immortality.
Firehouse Theatre brings a new work to the area. Theatre critic John Porter looks at “The Aliens.”
Theatre VCU tries to breathe new life into Frankenstein.
Olly Explores 7 Wonders of the Chesapeake Bay, written by Elaine Ann Allen and illustrated by Kelli Nash, is an age-appropriate and fun way to introduce young children to the marvels of the Chesapeake Bay and its wildlife, infrastructure and history. With the curious Olly the Oyster who is looking for adventure, children discover that following the current leads to many wonders big and small. With interactions with Mr. Snail, Mrs. Blue Crab and others, Olly learns about the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem in language that is informative and friendly.
Freelance writer Joan Tupponce found “Sam and Carol” at Gottwald Theater has good acting and fascinating content.