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Laurie Hertzel

Senior Editor | Books
phone: 612-673-7302
Laurie Hertzel is the books editor for the Star Tribune, which means she spends hours every day opening boxes, and each night lugs home more books than anyone could read in a lifetime. But she’s not complaining and knows exactly how lucky she is to be paid to write about books. (When she’s not opening boxes.)
Recent content from Laurie Hertzel
Beloved Minneapolis mystery bookstore, Once Upon a Crime, going on the market

Beloved Minneapolis mystery bookstore, Once Upon a Crime, going on the market

Owners Pat and Gary are putting their beloved bookstore up for sale.
Review: 'Blackout,' by Sarah Hepola; alcohol's dangerous lure

Review: 'Blackout,' by Sarah Hepola; alcohol's dangerous lure

NONFICTION: In her honest and forthright memoir, Sarah Hepola examines the iron grip that alcohol has had on her since she was a child.
Jocelyn Hale to leave post at the Loft Literary Center

Jocelyn Hale to leave post at the Loft Literary Center

Executive director will stay through August.
Loft Literary Center names Britt Udesen as new director

Loft Literary Center names Britt Udesen as new director

A Minnesota native will take over as the center marks its 40th year.
Minnesota bookstores will celebrate release of Harper Lee novel

Minnesota bookstores will celebrate release of Harper Lee novel

That ticking noise you hear is the countdown to the release of the new Harper Lee novel, “Go Set a Watchman,” which will be in bookstores July 14.
Dean Bakopoulos' novel 'Summerlong' follows Iowa marriage in crisis

Dean Bakopoulos' novel 'Summerlong' follows Iowa marriage in crisis

Dean Bakopoulos’ third book concentrates on an Iowa couple’s marital struggles during a long, hot summer.
Summer books: New in paperback for relaxing reads

Summer books: New in paperback for relaxing reads

Mostly lighthearted, some downright funny, here are some happy paperbacks for your hot beach read.
Minnesota writer Spike Carlsen tells the story of his handmade North Shore cabin

Minnesota writer Spike Carlsen tells the story of his handmade North Shore cabin

The North Shore land that Spike Carlsen fell in love with was considered nearly unbuildable. This barely slowed him down.
Meet Megan Marsnik, author of this year's summer serial, 'Under Ground'

Meet Megan Marsnik, author of this year's summer serial, 'Under Ground'

Megan Marsnik, author of the novel running this summer in the Star Tribune, grew to love history and writing during her northern Minnesota childhood.

Minneapolis Central Library closing book on its store

Libraries are all things to all people — they lend books, CDs, DVDs and e-books. They have meeting rooms, a piano room, places to hold…
Twin Cities bookstores plan events for Independent Bookstore Day

Twin Cities bookstores plan events for Independent Bookstore Day

From face-painting to F. Scott Fitzgerald bingo, independent bookstores are throwing a giant party on Saturday.
Independent Bookstore Day: What to do/see/read

Independent Bookstore Day: What to do/see/read

From face-painting to F. Scott Fitzgerald bingo, independent bookstores are throwing a giant party on Saturday.
Author's quest to follow a young immigrant becomes a book

Author's quest to follow a young immigrant becomes a book

Sonia Nazario rode atop trains and hitchhiked in Mexico to write about a young immigrant.
Marlon James, Joyce Sidman pick up 2nd Minnesota Book Awards; Lori Sturdevant picks up 3rd

Marlon James, Joyce Sidman pick up 2nd Minnesota Book Awards; Lori Sturdevant picks up 3rd

Novelist Marlon James and poet Joyce Sidman each picked up their second Minnesota Book Award on Saturday night, and previous nominees Julie Klassen and Margi…
Huge writing conference has Mpls. fully booked

Huge writing conference has Mpls. fully booked

The Association of Writers and Writing Programs, known as AWP, begins Wednesday at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
Review: 'What Comes Next and How to Like It,' by Abigail Thomas

Review: 'What Comes Next and How to Like It,' by Abigail Thomas

Nonfiction: In her plain-spoken and wise memoir, Abigail Thomas turns an unflinching eye on aging and death.
Review: 'Window-Shopping Through the Iron Curtain,' by David Hlynsky

Review: 'Window-Shopping Through the Iron Curtain,' by David Hlynsky

NONFICTION: Photo book captures the odd displays of Soviet era shops.
Review: 'The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy,' by Rachel Joyce

Review: 'The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy,' by Rachel Joyce

In this companion book to “The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry,” a dying woman in the north of England waits for her old friend to arrive.
Writer Peter Heller gets thrills from fiction

Writer Peter Heller gets thrills from fiction

After kayaking, flying, surfing and traveling the world, Peter Heller settles down to fiction. For now.

Minnesota Book Award finalists announced

Minnesota writer Larry Millett is a finalist for a Minnesota Book Award in two categories; the children’s literature category is a hotbed of competition with…
Marathon reading of 'Beowulf' to mark National Readathon Day

Marathon reading of 'Beowulf' to mark National Readathon Day

A marathon reading of “Beowulf” will mark National Readathon Day.
Stranger in a strange land

Stranger in a strange land

Elena Gorokhova’s memoir about moving to the United States from Brezhnev’s Russia is particularly strong when conveying the confusion of a new immigrant and the lyrical longing for the country she left behind.
Artist of year: Kate DiCamillo, rock star of children's lit

Artist of year: Kate DiCamillo, rock star of children's lit

After 18 books and two Newbery Awards, the Minneapolis children's author still feels grateful, and a little surprised, to be a writer.
Holiday books: The best regional books

Holiday books: The best regional books

  “By the Waters of Minnetonka” By Eric Dregni. (University of Minnesota Press, 224 pages, $29.95.) There were big plans for Lake Minnetonka back in…
Coffee House Press founder Allan Kornblum passes away

Coffee House Press founder Allan Kornblum passes away

Allan Kornblum, the wiry-haired, keen-minded founder of the internationally renowned Coffee House Press, died Sunday morning at his home in St. Paul. He had been…
Review: 'A Backpack, a Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka,' by Lev Golinkin

Review: 'A Backpack, a Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka,' by Lev Golinkin

NONFICTION: The memoir of a Jewish boy and his family, who emigrated from the Soviet Union in 1989.
Phil Klay wins National Book Award for fiction

Phil Klay wins National Book Award for fiction

Minneapolis’ Graywolf Press has two finalists, but no winner.
A Q&A with John Connolly, author of the Charlie Parker series

A Q&A with John Connolly, author of the Charlie Parker series

Author John Connolly sets his Charlie Parker mystery series in the Maine of his memories.

'Bookmatch' pairs up writers and readers

New “Bookmatch” program matches up readers and books — and music and desserts.
Author James McBride finds humor in pain and pain in humor

Author James McBride finds humor in pain and pain in humor

The bestselling author doesn't find everything funny. Humor, he notes, depends on context. He will speak Wednesday night at the University of Minnesota.
Maureen Corrigan explains why 'Great Gatsby' is a literary miracle

Maureen Corrigan explains why 'Great Gatsby' is a literary miracle

In her new book, NPR critic Maureen Corrigan takes apart Fitzgerald’s masterpiece and finds it nearly perfect.
Authors of "GI Brides” tell the stories of the Englishwomen who came to America after the war

Authors of "GI Brides” tell the stories of the Englishwomen who came to America after the war

New book tells the true stories of four English women who moved to America after WWII with their GI husbands.
November 2013: Freeman and Erdrich in conversation about the writing life

November 2013: Freeman and Erdrich in conversation about the writing life

Louise Erdrich turns the tables on critic John Freeman, interviewing him about the writing life.
Author William Kent Krueger still has passion for writing

Author William Kent Krueger still has passion for writing

Even after awards for “Ordinary Grace” and the Cork O’Connor series, William Kent Krueger gets up every morning and writes.
Q&A with bestselling author Deborah Harkness

Q&A with bestselling author Deborah Harkness

Writer and scholar Deborah Harkness hits bestseller gold with her All Souls trilogy.
Coffee House Press' writers in residence find inspiration

Coffee House Press' writers in residence find inspiration

Coffee House Press is embedding artists and writers in libraries – even little ones – to look for inspiration.
St. Paul author Stephan Eirik Clark gets 'Colbert bump' for new novel

St. Paul author Stephan Eirik Clark gets 'Colbert bump' for new novel

As part of his vendetta against Amazon, comedian Stephen Colbert asks viewers to make “Sweetness No. 9” a bestseller by buying it from independent bookstores.
Interview with an author: Brad Taylor, author of 'Days of Rage'

Interview with an author: Brad Taylor, author of 'Days of Rage'

Thriller writer Brad Taylor draws on his own special operations experience in the Mideast for his Pike Logan novels.
Club Book announces fall schedule

Club Book announces fall schedule

The free reading series will open with Lev Grossman, end with Nikki Giovanni.
Hillary Rodham Clinton to sign books July 20 in St. Paul

Hillary Rodham Clinton to sign books July 20 in St. Paul

The former secretary of state — and possible presidential candidate — will autograph up to 1,000 books at Common Good Books.
Coffee House Press debut novelist wins Baileys Prize

Coffee House Press debut novelist wins Baileys Prize

Irish writer Eimear McBride beats Donna Tartt and Jhumpa Lahiri for the award.
Turn a new page, with books for summer

Turn a new page, with books for summer

Four Minnesota authors, plus our critics and readers, suggest books to get lost in during our fleeting sunny months.
Summer books: 5 paperbacks you must read--and then ten more.

Summer books: 5 paperbacks you must read--and then ten more.

Maybe you missed them in hardcover — or want to read them again.
Eulogy for an owlet

Eulogy for an owlet

A great horned owl chick brings neighbors together in anticipation, joy and sorrow. It had no idea when it fell that so many hearts were broken
Meet Cary J. Griffith, author of the Star Tribune's summer book serial, "Savage Minnesota”

Meet Cary J. Griffith, author of the Star Tribune's summer book serial, "Savage Minnesota”

Cary J. Griffith sets his mysteries in the outdoors, drawing on a childhood love of nature.
Robert Bly comes out for Poetry Month, and the poets come out for Bly

Robert Bly comes out for Poetry Month, and the poets come out for Bly

Bly comes out for Poetry Month, and the poets come out for Bly.
Obituary: Mystery author Harold Adams was known for S.D. stories

Obituary: Mystery author Harold Adams was known for S.D. stories

The small-town, Depression-era hotel in Corbin, S.D., where most of Harold Adams’ mystery novels took place was based on a hotel that his grandparents ran…
Minneapolis' Graywolf Press wins second Pulitzer in three years

Minneapolis' Graywolf Press wins second Pulitzer in three years

The award for “3 Sections,” a collection of poetry by Vijay Seshadri, comes just four months after Tracy K. Smith won the Pulitzer for “Life on Mars.”
Elizabeth Strout's novels are suffused with the salty tang of Maine

Elizabeth Strout's novels are suffused with the salty tang of Maine

A writer can find her voice in all kinds of ways: Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Elizabeth Strout found hers through stand-up comedy.
Winners of the Minnesota Book Awards announced

Winners of the Minnesota Book Awards announced

The mystery writer tied the record set by Louise Erdrich.
Author Lorrie Moore in conversation with author Ellen Akins at "Talk of the Stacks”

Author Lorrie Moore in conversation with author Ellen Akins at "Talk of the Stacks”

Lorrie Moore spoke about ghosts, humor and morning rituals at Talk of the Stacks.
Kathy Reichs, producer of 'Bones' TV show, coming to Cities on book tour

Kathy Reichs, producer of 'Bones' TV show, coming to Cities on book tour

The woman behind the hit TV show “Bones” visits the Twin Cities with her son and co-author to promote the latest book in their young-adult series.
Hognander History and Kay Sexton awards winners announced

Hognander History and Kay Sexton awards winners announced

The last two big awards leading up to next month’s Minnesota Book Awards Gala have been announced. The Hognander History Award, which is given every…
Listening for the call and response of courting owls

Listening for the call and response of courting owls

The courtship of great-horned owls takes place in the dark and cold of deepest winter. For those who stumble across it, it’s a wonderful thing to behold.
Hoot patrol: Listening for the call and response of courting owls

Hoot patrol: Listening for the call and response of courting owls

The courtship of great-horned owls takes place in the dark and cold of deepest winter. For those who stumble across it, it’s a wonderful thing to behold.
Anna Quindlen to read in Twin Cities

Anna Quindlen to read in Twin Cities

Prize-winning journalist and bestselling novelist Anna Quindlen will read and sign books in the Twin Cities.
Looking for home in Louisville

Looking for home in Louisville

A trip to Louisville, the place of her birth, leaves a traveler wondering what makes one place resonate, and another place leave you cold?
New book will tell the story of Zach Sobiech, who wrote the song "Clouds”

New book will tell the story of Zach Sobiech, who wrote the song "Clouds”

Laura Sobiech of Lakeland, Minn., whose son Zach died of cancer last year, has written a memoir about his life. “Fly a Little Higher: How…
Minneapolis writer Kate DiCamillo wins second Newbery Medal

Minneapolis writer Kate DiCamillo wins second Newbery Medal

Kate DiCamillo’s “Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures,” a book about a girl and a squirrel, won the John Newbery Medal, considered the most prestigious award in children’s literature.
Minnesota Book Award finalists announced

Minnesota Book Award finalists announced

Many past winners are among this year’s honorees.
Interview with Ruth Ozeki

Interview with Ruth Ozeki

The author of the Booker short-listed “A Tale for the Time Being” is coming to St. Paul.
Club Book brings in Berg, Sullivan and others

Club Book brings in Berg, Sullivan and others

J. Courtney Sullivan, Nikki Giovanni and Elizabeth Berg, plus a host of regional writers will kick off this year’s free, suburban authors series.
Keeping an eye on the foxes in St. Paul's Como Park

Keeping an eye on the foxes in St. Paul's Como Park

Watching a litter of red fox kits grow up in St. Paul’s Como Park proves to be a lesson in the brutal and beautiful ways of nature.
Season's readings: Holiday book recommendations and gift guide

Season's readings: Holiday book recommendations and gift guide

When we asked the simple question, “What was the best book you read this year?” readers flooded us with answers.
Holiday books: 10 that reflect Minnesota and the region

Holiday books: 10 that reflect Minnesota and the region

From collected letters to collected stories, from memoir to adventure, these 10 books reflect Minnesota and the region.
Pat Conroy: Son of Santini

Pat Conroy: Son of Santini

Nearly 40 years after “The Great Santini,” Pat Conroy follows his bestselling debut novel with a nonfiction sequel about his violent father.
Cambridge, Mass., library rejects collection of J.F. Powers' letters

Cambridge, Mass., library rejects collection of J.F. Powers' letters

The daughter of Minnesota literary lion J.F. Powers published his letters. The book was rejected.
Poet Robert Bly launches new collection in a poignant evening

Poet Robert Bly launches new collection in a poignant evening

A poignant evening with Robert Bly
Lahiri and Erdrich discuss 'The Lowland' in Minneapolis

Lahiri and Erdrich discuss 'The Lowland' in Minneapolis

Jhumpa Lahiri had requested no photographs, so you will just have to imagine the scene: Two lovely, intense women, both with long dark hair and…
Minnesota poet Matt Rasmussen shortlisted for National Book Award

Minnesota poet Matt Rasmussen shortlisted for National Book Award

His book, “Black Ap­er­ture,” also won the Walt Whit­man Award.
Great horned owlet has great adventure in Como Park

Great horned owlet has great adventure in Como Park

Every morning in early spring, the great horned owlets were hanging around the silver maple tree, too young to fly. And then one of them fell.
REVIEW: 'Gaddafi's Harem,' by Annick Cojean

REVIEW: 'Gaddafi's Harem,' by Annick Cojean

NONFICTION: A French reporter uncovers evidence of systematic rape and torture throughout Moammar Gaddafi’s regime.
Books: Jhumpa Lahiri, Stephen King and more

Books: Jhumpa Lahiri, Stephen King and more

Pulitzer Prize winner Jhumpa Lahiri will be in conversation with Louise Erdrich on Oct. 9 in Minneapolis, and that is going to be one hot ticket to get.
Sue Grafton closing in on the end of the alphabet

Sue Grafton closing in on the end of the alphabet

Best-selling crime novelist Sue Grafton tackles “W” in her latest mystery. We chatted with her in advance of her Sept. 17 Twin Cities appearance.
Along the Superior Hiking Trail, up the North Shore

Along the Superior Hiking Trail, up the North Shore

On an October hiking trip up the North Shore, our correspondent clings to summer even as the leaves begin to fall.
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