Arts & Culture

Arts and culture

In her introduction to Tbe Best American Short Stories 2018,  writer Roxanne Gay says, "I am looking for the artful way any given story is conveyed, but I also love when a story has a powerful message, when a story teaches me something about the world." This famous collection of short stories has famous literary icon Roxanne Gay take the wheel, with stories that do indeed convey powerful, important messages. West Lafayette Library Public Director Nick Schenkel has the review.

Book Review: How To

May 6, 2020

Science can answer many questions about our natural world, but can it solve some of our mundane problems? Problems such as moving, trying to charge your phone, taking a selfie, and other human foils of this day and age?

The book How To: Absurd Scientific Advice for Common Real-World Problems gives unexpected scientific answers to these questions and more. West Lafayette Library Director Nick Schenkel is back with another review from his own home.

Book Review: The Pianist from Syria

Apr 24, 2020

Perhaps we could all use a story of hope in these times. The Pianist From Syria is a story like no other that shows the power of human potential. It's the true memoir of a Syrian man growing up in his war-torn country. Music is his escape, and carries him through a life longing for peace. West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has the review. 

Book Review: Call Upon the Water

Apr 17, 2020

Working for an engineering university, we are more than aware of the steretoypical engineer lacking romanticism. Breaking these stereotypes, Call Upon the Water is one of the few novels that tells a beautiful story of romance with an engineer as its protagonist. And don't worry there aren't any corny mathematics pick-up lines in its pages. West Lafayette Libaray Director Nick Schenkel has the review. 

P.S. The derivative of my love for you is 0, because my love for you is constant 

Book Review: Slime

Apr 10, 2020

When you happen to see algae in your daily life are you one to say "yuck!" at its appearance? Well, after reading this book you might be inclined to say "thanks" or "don't hurt me." The book Slime: How Algae Created Us, Plague Us, and Just Might Save Us by Ruth Kassinger gives complex insight into a seemingly simple organism. West Lafayette Library Director Nick Schenkel is back again with another review from his own home.

Book Review: Let's Make Ramen!

Mar 27, 2020

Rain or shine or pandemic, no matter, West Lafayette Library Director Nick Schenkel is back with another book review recorded from his own home! Are you in need of some comfort food in these strange times? Let's Make Ramen! A Comic Book Cookbook gives a comedic take on a classic food that you may already have stocked in your pantry. Nick Schenkel has the review.

Suzanne Bona has launched a new short-term series on the Sunday Baroque blog: “Beautiful Music in Difficult Times”. She is posting a daily musical selection on the website and Facebook page as a means of social connection to counter the necessary social distancing we are all practicing. Click here for more:

What is love? What is masculinity? What is IKEA? These are the questions husbands face when raising a son, and these are the main topics of the non-fiction book Things My Son Needs to Know About the World by Fredrik Backman. The book offers life advice for Backman’s son, but the lessons shared are universal to anyone who is still growing up. West Lafayette Library Director Nick Schenkel has the review.

Book Review: Elements of Family Style

Mar 6, 2020

Kids are messy. If you have a child you are probably quite familiar with the woes of mud stains, lego blocks, and spaghetti dinners. How can anyone have time for parenting while keeping a clean, stylish living space at the same time? Elements of Family Style by Erin Gates attempts to accomplish this goal. Through her experience as a family blogger/instagram-er, she has seen the gamut of messes. Does it hold up? West Lafayette Public Library Director Nick Schenkel has the review.

Greg Kostraba

In Studio WBAA is an occasional series from our studios in Purdue's Elliott Hall of Music, featuring conversation and performance from tfine musicians in West Central Indiana and beyond. WBAA Content Director Greg Kostraba began the series with guest Baroque cellist Juliana Soltis, who introduces us to the Bach Cello Suites by Johann Sebastian Bach, and performs selections from several of them.