Small Wonder Essays

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Education reformers Deborah Meier, Theodore R. Sizer, and Nancy Faust Sizer have published books that have helped shape a movement. As school principals, all three have done another kind of writing as well: short essays in their own schools' newsletters to families. Keeping School collects the best of these wonderfully readable gems of education writing-from an urban public elementary school and an exurban charter high school-along with new essays.

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The more than two dozen personal essays in this new collection by one of Texas's master storytellers range from travel pieces about Havana and London to stories about small-town exotics that are funny, nervy, outlandish, and all characterized by James Hoggard's sly wit and his noted openness to people he meets along the way. Fast-paced, yet at the same time reflective, Hoggard guides his readers into some of the wonderfully strange turns of the world, including a Saturday morning gathering of khaki-dressed men who have hunkered down at a Dairy Queen to get away from their women who want them to spend the day doing chores.

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In her new essay collection, the beloved author of High Tide in Tucson brings to us, out of one of history's darker moments, an extended love song to the world we still have.Whether she is contemplating the Grand Canyon, her vegetable garden, motherhood, genetic engineering, or the future of a nation founded on the best of all human impulses, these essays are grounded in the author's belief that our largest problems have grown from the earth's remotest corners as well as our own backyards, and that answers may lie in both those places.

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