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Erin O’Brien and Bob Perkoski

Rust Belt Burlesque – The Softer Side of a Heavy Metal Town

Swallow Press

Connoisseurs of all forms of theater, Clevelanders and Buckeyes in general, will enjoy Rust Belt Burlesque. It’s a jam-packed read, loaded with old and modern photos, postcards, playbills and backstage shots chronicling one of Cleveland’s many contributions to American culture—which include Superman and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. There’s a concise history of Cleveland burlesque’s 19th century rise and 20th century decline, currently in revival among all shapes, sizes, ethnicities, genders and tastes. As a former Daytonian, whose youthful eyes took in the marquees of all those downtown Gem City Burly-Qs, it felt like old times.

– Bruce Collier



Laura Lippman

The Lady in the Lake

Faber & Faber

A wife and mom decides to reinvent herself at the ripe old age of 37 (!) in 1966 Baltimore and finds herself involved with the still-thriving newspaper business, as well as a pair of murders. Somehow, she makes time for a forbidden affair with a black police officer, too. Ms. Lippman knows even her most minor characters inside and out and never panders to cheap nostalgia. Good thing racism and sexism are behind us, right?

– Chris Manson



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