A Southern Bookstore Serving Up a Little Bit of Everything

For bibliophiles with plenty of time to browse, Richmond’s Chop Suey Books offers a feast of “gently used” books packed into its two-floor store.

By J. D. Biersdorfer

RICHMOND, Va. — “The joke was that when we opened up, we had three Civil War books,” said Ward Tefft, owner of Chop Suey Books, “But we’re in Richmond so we see a lot more now, and it’s grown since then.” Since it first opened 17 years ago, the store has grown more than just its local history holdings, and has become a well-stocked stop for book lovers strolling the vibrant Carytown district of Virginia’s capital (and former capital of the Confederacy). As described on its website, Chop Suey Books offers “gently used literature, art, photography, architecture, design, philosophy, poetry, theater, film and the like” volumes.

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In ‘Spring,’ Ali Smith’s Series Takes Its Most Political Turn

By Dwight Garner

“How’re you doing,” a character asks in “Spring,” Ali Smith’s new novel, “apart from the end of liberal capitalist democracy?”

“Spring” is the third novel in a projected seasonal cycle that began with “Autumn” in 2017 and continued last year with “Winter.” This is the most political book thus far in this earthy and humane series. Its heart is worn far out on its sleeve. It beats arrhythmically somewhere down near the knuckles.

Smith is not going to ride out this tumultuous political moment artistically, as if she were a car parked under an overpass during a storm. She’s delivered a bracing if uneven novel, one that, like jazz, feels improvised. “Spring” is tendentious at times, but it taps deeply into our contemporary unease. It’s always alive.

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The True-Crime Story That Harper Lee Tried and Failed to Write

By Michael Lewis

FURIOUS HOURS
Murder, Fraud, and the Last Trial of Harper Lee
By Casey Cep

Harper Lee was funny and profane and hard-drinking and seemingly uninterested in the role she created for herself: the famous writer who refused to write. She’d been 34 years old when she published “To Kill a Mockingbird.” It had sold several millions of copies — over 40 million to date — and won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1961, plus an Oscar for Gregory Peck in 1963. Then she’d gone silent. She maintained her silence for the next 50-odd years, until her death in 2016. If she was seeking to optimize other people’s interest in her she couldn’t have adopted a better strategy. As the crowds formed at the front of the theater waiting for her show, she’d slipped out the back and told her driver to take her as far away as she could get. “Some people only have one book in them,” she would sometimes explain, in her later years, when in the mood.

But she didn’t always feel that way. Back in the 1970s a story had caught her eye. A true-crime story, that belonged on the shelf more or less created by “In Cold Blood.” She’d helped Truman Capote research that book and would now write her own. She worked for years on the thing, or said she did, but the book never got written. Until now. “Furious Hours” is that book, with a twist. Casey Cep has picked up where Lee left off: She’s written the true-crime story that Harper Lee never figured out how to write. But she’s used it as an excuse to study Lee herself — and the reasons for her long silence.

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Four Design Books to Spruce Up Your Home

By Eve M. Kahn

The Italian designers Cesare Leonardi and Franca Stagi, who partnered in a Modena practice from the 1960s until the ‘80s, spent their spare time obsessively sketching trees in all seasons for editions of “The Architecture of Trees” (Princeton Architectural Press, $125, 424 pp.).

The book is newly available in English, and expanded into a sumptuous format weighing six and a half pounds. It combines quill-pen outlines of leafed and leafless specimens — as varied within strict parameters as Bernd and Hilla Becher’s factory photos — with bare-boned but poetic texts. Captions and a glossary shed light on how to identify epicarps (fruit skins) and flabellate (fan-shaped) foliage. An essay by Ms. Stagi meditates on how “nature experiments in infinite ways” within the confines of trees that “grab on to the planet” and thrive only where it suits them.

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Gabriel García Márquez, Journalist? A Book Revives the Novelist’s First Calling

By Dwight Garner

Gabriel García Márquez, “Gabo” to his friends, lived for journalism. He wrote for newspapers and magazines his entire life, and he founded six publications himself. He once said, against the wisdom of the ages, “I do not want to be remembered for ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude,’ nor for the Nobel Prize, but for the newspapers.”

García Márquez (1927-2014) inhaled fresh ink the way the press critic A. J. Liebling did, as if it were cigar smoke. He called journalism “the best job in the world” and “a biological necessity of humanity.” He understood that newspapers and magazines not only deliver data but that they add, through commentary of all variety, to the gaiety of a society.

A resonant new collection of García Márquez’s journalism, “The Scandal of the Century,” demonstrates how seriously he took reportage and what’s now sometimes called (would Liebling approve?) long-form narrative.

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Christian Yelich Returns With Homer to Cap Brewers’ Sweep of Mets

By The Associated Press

MILWAUKEE — Christian Yelich homered in his return to the lineup, and Zach Davies pitched into the eighth inning, leading the Milwaukee Brewers past the Mets, 3-2, on Sunday for a sweep of their three-game series.

The teams were coming off an 18-inning game on Saturday night, the longest in Miller Park history, that lasted 5 hours 22 minutes.

Yelich, the National League’s Most Valuable Player Award winner last season, was back in the starting lineup after missing five games with lower-back soreness. He lined out as a pinch-hitter in the 10th inning of Saturday’s marathon game.

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N.H.L. Playoffs: Blues Knock Out Stars Goalie and Force Game 7

By The Associated Press

DALLAS — Colton Parayko did not score for the St. Louis Blues on Sunday, but he still delivered a stunning blow to the Dallas Stars.

Parayko’s hard shot from the slot hit Ben Bishop’s left shoulder, knocking the Stars goalie onto his back and deflecting the puck to deep in the circle. Alexander Steen took a shot from there that was redirected by Jaden Schwartz over the still-laid-out Bishop in a 4-1 victory to force Game 7 in the second-round Western Conference semifinal series.

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N.B.A. Playoffs: Nuggets Rebound From 4-Overtime Loss to Top Blazers

By The Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Denver Nuggets have been good at bouncing back all season. Not even a draining four-overtime defeat could keep them down.

Nikola Jokic had 21 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists for his second straight triple-double and fourth of the playoffs, and the Nuggets evened their Western Conference semifinal series against the Portland Trail Blazers at 2-2 with a 116-112 victory on Sunday.

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Yankees Top the Mariners as C.C. Sabathia Bests Felix Hernandez

By The Associated Press

The Yankees pounced on Felix Hernandez, building a big cushion for C.C. Sabathia in a showdown of acclaimed veteran pitchers, and defeated the Seattle Mariners, 7-3, on Monday.

Luke Voit, Brett Gardner and Thairo Estrada homered off Hernandez, giving Sabathia a 6-0 lead after two innings, and the Yankees held on for their 12th win in 16 games.

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Bucks One Game Short of Conference Finals After Beating Celtics

By The Associated Press

BOSTON — Giannis Antetokounmpo had 39 points and 16 rebounds to lead the Bucks to a 113-101 victory over the Boston Celtics in Game 4 of their second-round playoff series on Monday night, moving Milwaukee within one win of its first trip to the conference finals since 2001.

The Bucks have won three straight since losing the opener of the best-of-seven series at home. They can eliminate the Celtics in Game 5 at home on Wednesday night and reach the East finals for the first time since the ’01 team of Ray Allen and Glenn Robinson fell to Philadelphia’s Allen Iverson and Dikembe Mutombo in seven games.

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