For even the most distinguished of bands, the phrase "first album in a quarter-century" is cause for concern. Who among us is anything close to what we were "back then"? By what means of dark magic could any group reunite after such a layoff and reproduce anything resembling its previous chemistry? Band reunions come and go, and most often the result is forgettable at best.
Alan Furst is fixated on a place on the verge of all-out war — and his many readers are grateful for his obsession.
Furst is the wonderfully inventive author of a series of novels set in Europe on the eve of World War II. He's often been compared to John le Carre, Graham Greene and other masters of fictional espionage. But it's time to consider him on his own merits.
Yvonne the Cow became famous for her escape from a German farm, and certain slaughter. For months, she eluded her owner and a bull sent to lure her out. Now Yvonne may replace the late Paul the Octopus, who predicted the winner for all of Germany's 2010 World Cup soccer matches.