Lois Leveen

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July 1, 2012

Batchelor Party

John Batchelor has a voice for radio. Listen to that enthusiastic intonation! You can practically here his bow tie wiggling over the audio waves.

I was delighted to join John for this interview about the history behind my novel The Secrets of Mary Bowser.

Please be patient while the audio file loads. Use the time to look at this adorable picture of my cats:
Stinky and The Mug Sing Songs of Love
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June 28, 2012

Sarah’s Key, Mary’s Secrets, and Truth That’s Stranger Than Fiction

I have once again hit the trifecta of Jewish book publications, with this piece about Sarah's Key and The Secrets of Mary Bowser.

For witty commentary on the punning names of the various online Jewish publications, check out my Tuesday blog post, below.
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June 26, 2012

Funny, You Don’t Book Jewish

Turns out, Jews have a way with words. Especially when it comes to describing their way with words.

Check out Funny, You Don't Book Jewish, a piece I wrote that explores what counts as Jewish American literature, and for that matter what counts as Chinese American literature. The piece is available via these punalicious outlets:

The Prosen People (hosted by the Jewish Book Council)
Members of the Scribe (hosted by MyJewishLearning.com)
Arty Semites (hosted by The Daily Forward)

And if you don't get the puns above, just ask. You know how my tribe likes to explicate a text.
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June 21, 2012

Black Slave, White House, Gray Lady

You know you are a geek when . . . your book is already published, but you're still doing research.

When I set out to write The Secrets of Mary Bowser, there very little documented evidence of Bowser's life. Since then, a few key historians have uncovered new information. And I've learned that many common beliefs about Bowser are embellished or completely unproven.

This New York Times article, The Black Slave in the Confederate White House, details my most recent research on Bowser. It includes my analysis of what we can learn from what we don't know about her.

It also includes the only known physical description of Bowser, as recorded by Reverend Charles Beecher, Harriet Beecher Stowe's brother.
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June 19, 2012

Take the Juneteenth Challenge

Happy holiday.

Didn't know you were having one?

Here's
a snip from the Huffington Post
to catch you up:

Today is Juneteenth. This holiday, which commemorates the end of slavery, tells us as much about what America means as the Fourth of July, Presidents Day, or Memorial Day. What distinguishes the United States is our nation's persistent struggle to make real a set of ideals that have been contested and contentious from the earliest days of the republic. It's particularly worth remembering Juneteenth this year, as people across the country mark the sesquicentennial of the Civil War.


You can read the full piece at the Huff Post website, and take the Juneteenth Challenge: name 5 African Americans who helped end slavery--besides Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman?

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