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Grant Wood (1892-1942) was born near Anamosa, IA on February 13, 1892. He is best, perhaps only, remembered for American Gothic


Georges Simenon (1903-89), creator of the immortal French detective Maigret, was born in Lieges, BELG on February 13, 1903. Brothers Judd recommends the whole series, try A Maigret Trio.


Darren Aronofsky was born in Brooklyn, NY on February 12, 1969. Read Orrin's review of the movie Pi (1988) (directed by Darren Aronofsky 1969-)


Abraham Lincoln (1809-65) was born in Hodgenville, KY on February 12, 1809. Brothers Judd recommends Lincoln (1995)(David Herbert Donald)


The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was founded in New York, NY on February 12, 1909.


Charles Darwin (1809-82) was born in Shrewsbury, ENG on February 12, 1809. Brothers Judd recommends the excellent critical analysis Darwin on Trial (1993) (Phillip E. Johnson)


Boris Pasternak (1890-1960) was born in Moscow, Russia on February 10, 1890. Read Orrin's review of Doctor Zhivago (1956)(Boris Pasternak 1890-1960) (Grade: B-)


Berthold Brecht(1898-1956), German playwright, was born in Augsburg, Bavaria on February 10, 1898.


Alban Berg was born in Vienna, Austria on February 9, 1885


Alice Walker (1944-) was born in Eatonton, GA on February 9, 1944. Read Orrin's review of The Color Purple (1982)(Grade: B+)


John Grisham (1955-) was born in Jonesboro, AR on February 8, 1955. Read our review of The Firm (1991).


Jules Verne (1828-1905) was born on February 8, 1828. Read Orrin's review of Around the World in Eighty Days (1873) (Grade: A+)


Kate Chopin (1851-1904) was born in St. Louis, MO on February 8, 1851. Read Orrin's review of The Awakening (1899)(Grade: B+)


Charles Dickens (1812-1870) was born in Landport, ENG on February 7, 1812. Read Orrin's reviews of A Christmas Carol (1843)(Grade: A+), A Tale of Two Cities (1859)(Grade: A+) and Great Expectations (1860-61)(Grade: A+)


Sir James Murray (1837-) was born in Denholm, Scotland on February 7, 1837. Read Orrin's review of The Professor and the Madman: A Tale of Murder, Insanity, and the Making of the Oxford English Dictionary (1998)(Simon Winchester) (Grade: B+)


Sinclair Lewis (1885-1951) was born in Sauk Centre, MN on February 7, 1885. Read Orrin's review of Main Street (1920)(Grade: C)


Sir Thomas More (1477-1535) was born in London, ENG on February 7, 1477. Read Orrin's review of A Man for All Seasons (1960)(Robert Bolt) (Grade: A+)


Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867-) was born in Pepin, WI on February 7, 1867.


Gay Talese (1932-) in Ocean City, NJ on February 7, 1932. Read Orrin's review of Honor Thy Father (1971) (Grade: A)


Tom Brokaw (1940-) was born in Yankton, SD on February 6, 1940. Read Orrin's review of The Greatest Generation (1999)(Grade: D+)


Ronald Reagan (1911-) was born in Tampico, IL on February 6, 1911. Read Orrin's reviews of: Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Reagan (1999)(Edmund Morris)(Grade: A/F),What I Saw At the Revolution: A Political Life in the Reagan Era (1990)(Peggy Noonan 1950-) (Grade: A-)and On the Brink; The Dramatic Saga of How the Reagan Administration Changed the Course of History and Won the Cold War (1996)(Jay Winik) (Grade: A+)


George Herman "Babe" Ruth (1895-) was born in Baltimore, MD on February 6, 1895. Brothers Judd recommends Robert Creamer's great biography: Babe: The Legend Comes to Life


John Guare (1938-) was born in New York, NY on February 5, 1938. Read our review of Six Degrees of Separation (1990).


Bob Marley (1945-81) was born in Rhoden Hall, Jamaica on February 5, 1945. Brothers Judd recommends Catch a Fire: The Life of Bob Marley (Timothy White)


Hank Aaron (1934-) was born in Mobile, AL on February 5, 1934. Read Orrin's review of I Had a Hammer: The Hank Aaron Story (1991)(Henry Aaron (1935-) with Lonnie Wheeler)(Grade: A)


Robert Coover (1932-) was born in Charles City, IA on February 4, 1932. Read Orrin's review of The Universal Baseball Association, Inc. : J. Henry Waugh, Prop. (Grade: A-)


Russell Hoban was born in Lansdale, PA on February 4, 1925


Charles A. Lindbergh (1902-74) was born in Detroit, MI on February 4, 1902. Read Orrin's reviews ofThe Spirit of St. Louis (1953) (Grade: A+) andLindbergh (1998)(A. Scott Berg) (Grade: A+)


Norman Rockwell (1894-1978) was born in New York, NY on February 3, 1894.


Gertrude Stein (1874-1946) was born in Allegheny, PA on February 3, 1874.


Felix Mendelssohn was born in Hamburg, GER on February 3, 1809.


James A. Michener was born on February 3, 1907.


Paul Auster (1947-) was born in Newark, NJ on February 3, 1947. Read Orrin's reviews of The Music of Chance (1990) (Grade: A-) and Paul Auster's City of Glass: A Graphic Mystery (1994) (adapted by Paul Karasik and David Mazzucchelli) (Grade: A)


Thomas M. Disch (1940-) was born in Des Moines, IA on February 2, 1940. Read Orrin's review of The Dreams Our Stuff Is Made of: How Science Fiction Conquered the World (1998)


James Joyce (1882-1941) was born in Dublin, IRE on February 2, 1882. Read Orrin's reviews of:A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916)(Grade: F), Ulysses (1918)(F x Googleplex), Finnegan's Wake (1939)(Grade: G) and The Death of a Joyce Scholar: A Peter McGarr Mystery (1989)(Bartholomew Gill 1943-)


James Dickey (1925-97) was born on February 2, 1925. Read Orrin's review of Deliverance (1970) (Grade: A+)


Ayn Rand (1905-82) was born on February 2, 1905. Read Orrin's review of Anthem (1946)(Grade: A)


Reynolds Price (1933-) was born in Macon, NC on February 1, 1933


John Ford (1895-) was born in Cape Elizabeth, ME on February 1, 1895. He was recently named one of Brothers Judd Ten Greatest Cultural Figures of the 20th Century.


Langston Hughes (1902-67) was born in Joplin, MO on February 1, 1902. Read Orrin's review of The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes (Grade: B+)


Muriel Spark (1918-) was born in Edinburgh, Scotland on February 1, 1918. Read Orrin's review of The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1961)(Grade: D)


Norman Mailer (1923-) was born in Long Branch, NJ on January 31, 1923. Brothers Judd has reviewed several of his books.


John Lukacs (1924-) was born in Budapest, Hungary on January 31, 1924. Read Orrin's review of Five Days in London, May 1940 (1999) (John Lukacs 1924-) (Grade: B)


Zane Grey (1872-1939) was born in Zanesville, OH on January 31, 1872. Read Orrin's review of Riders of the Purple Sage (1912) (Grade: A)


John O'Hara (1905-1970) was born in PA on January 31, 1905. Read Orrin's reviews of Appointment in Samarra (1934)(Grade: A) and BUtterfield 8 (1935)(Grade: B+)


Kenzaburo Oe (1935-), the 1994 Nobel Laureate, was born in Shikoku, Japan on January 31, 1935. Read Orrin's review of A Personal Matter (1969)(Grade: A+)


Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882-1945) was born in Hyde Park, NY on January 30, 1882. Read Orrin's review of Freedom from Fear: The United States, 1929-1945 (1999) (David M. Kennedy)(Grade: A) & No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt(Doris Kearns Goodwin)(C+)


Richard Brautigan (1935-84) was born in Tacoma, WA on January 30, 1935. Read Orrin's review of Trout Fishing in America (1967)


Thomas Paine (1737-1809) was born January 29, 1737.


Romain Rolland (1866-1945) was born in Nievre, on January 29, 1866.


Edward Abbey (1927-1989) was born in Home, PA on January 29, 1927. Read Orrin's review of The Brave Cowboy: an Old Tale in a New Time (1956)(Grade: B+)


Anton Chekov (1860-1904) was born in Taganrog, Crimea, Russia on January 29, 1860. Brothers Judd recommends He and She and Other Stories 1880-82 : The Complete Short Stories of Anton Chekhov (Vol 1) (Anton Chekhov 1860-1904) (translated by Peter Sekirin)


William McKinley (1843-1901) was born in Niles, OH on January 29, 1843.


Colette (Sidonie-Gabrielle) (1873-1954) was born in Saint-Saveur-en Puisaye, Burgundy, France on January 28, 1873.


Donna (Donnabelle Mullenger) Reed (1921-86) was born in Denison, IA on January 27, 1921.


Lewis Carroll (Charles Lutwidge Dodgson)(1832-1898), our Grandfather's favorite author, was born in Daresbury, ENG on January 27, 1832. Many of his works are available online, but every library should have his Collected Works.


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-91) was born in Salzburg, Austria on January 27, 1756


Douglas MacArthur (1880-1964) was born in Little Rock, AR on January 26, 1880. Brothers Judd recommends William Manchester's bio American Caesar


Paul Newman (1925-) was born in Shaker Heights, OH on January 26, 1925. Brothers Judd particularly recommends: Harper (1966), Cool Hand Luke (1967), The Sting (1973), and The Verdict (1982)


Robert Burns (1759-1796) was born in Alloway, Scotland on January 25, 1759.


W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) was born on January 25, 1874. Read Orrin's reviews of Of Human Bondage (1915) (Grade: F)(#66 on the Modern Library Top 100 Novels of the 20th Century) and The Moon and Sixpence (1919) (Grade: C+)


Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) was born in London, ENG on January 25, 1882. Read Orrin's review of To the Lighthouse (1927)(Grade: F) and A Room of One's Own (1929)(Grade: C+)


Edith Wharton (1862-1937) was born in New York, NY on January 24, 1862. See Orrin's reviews of The House of Mirth (1905)(Grade: B+), Ethan Frome (1911) (Grade: A) and The Age of Innocence (1920)(Grade: A)


Hadrian (76-) was born in Seville, Spain on January 24, 76.


Derek Walcott (1930-), 1992 Nobel Prize Laureate, was born in Castries, Saint Lucia on January 23, 1930.


Jean-Baptiste "Django" Reinhardt (1910-53) was born in Liberchies, Belgium on January 23, 1910. In 1934 he formed the famous quintet the Hot Club of France with violinist Stephane Grappelli. Dryfoos recommends: Django with his American Friends, especially the 4 cuts he made with Benny Carter and Coleman Hawkins in the mid-30's. Carter provided the arrangements and some nice work on alto and trumpet; Hawkins has a great solo in each of the tunes. Although Django doesn't solo much on these tracks, his distinctive sound and sense of swing absolutely propel the session.


Edouard Manet (1832-) was born in Paris, FR on January 23, 1832.