Category Archives: New Books Network Podcasts

Frankel, Laurie This is how it Always Was

“It was one of those hot, humid buggy Wisconsin summers where it went from snow to sauna in a week and a half and stayed there. The boys spent it perpetually wet from the lake, the sprinkler, a surprisingly durable water slide Roo built out of trash bags on his grandmother’s front lawn. Carmelo taught Rigel to knit. At first, she thought it was the resemblance of the needles to something a ninja might own that appealed to him, and maybe it was, but he fixed on it like sand to sunscreen and spent the summer trailing training scarves everywhere, dropped stitches unraveling like plot threads. Ben used practice tassels as bookmarks. Jupiter used abandoned projects as bedding. Orion employed them as bandanas, sweatbands, do-rags, tube tops, cummerbunds, and toga tails, coming down to lazy summer breakfasts as Bruce Springsteen and Julius Caesar (equally ancient in his mind), 50 Cent and Fred Astaire. But Claude wore them as long flowing hair-tresses that cascaded down his back or could be attached via headband then rubber-banded up like a real ponytail. Roo began a practice he would hone to an art in the years to come: pretending he wasn’t related to any of them.”