By D.G. Martin D.G. Martin hosts “North Carolina Bookwatch,” which airs Sundays at noon and Thursdays at 5 p.m. on UNC-TV. For more information or to view prior programs visit
  • Thanksgiving and Happiness

    November 21, 2015 at 5:50 am

    Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Why? One reason is that it is one of the very few days we have saved just for families and friends. We have done a better job of keeping the Thanksgiving holiday from getting away from us. It has not yet taken charge of our lives. No dressing up with […]

  • Celebrating connections to winners of the North Carolina Awards

    November 17, 2015 at 1:39 am

    Finally, something to brag about, I thought as I made my way to the annual dinner for the presentation of this year’s North Carolina Awards. These awards recognize contributions in the fields of fine art, literature, public service and science. I am always amazed to learn about the accomplishments and contributions of the award winners each […]

  • An important author’s struggles can help his readers

    November 10, 2015 at 4:25 am

    You can’t go home again. This is what Thomas Wolfe learned after his thinly disguised autobiographical novel cast some of his family and neighbors in Asheville in unflattering roles. It is always dangerous for a successful writer to base fictional characters on real family or neighbors. Like most of us, these people cannot be expected […]

  • Pushing Spellings into the pantheon, not the trash bin

    November 4, 2015 at 9:00 am

    Let’s help her all we can. That is what I am telling my friends in the university community when they express displeasure at the selection of Margaret Spellings as their new president, or when they complain about the UNC Board of Governors’ presidential selection process and some of its other recent actions. First of all […]

  • Who said this about whom?

    October 27, 2015 at 1:50 am

    The candidate “has the knack of doing things and doing them noisily, clamorously; while he is in the neighborhood the public can no more look the other way than the small boy can turn his head away from a circus parade followed by a steam calliope.” Can you guess who was the target of this […]

  • Good for Nicholas Sparks, good for North Carolina

    October 20, 2015 at 12:00 am

    “My books are all different,” Nicholas Sparks, the No. 1 New York Times best selling author who lives in New Bern, told a group of 500 fans at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Alumni Center last week. Except, he says, for two things. One is that there will always be a couple in love. The other is that […]

  • Wearing a Black Doctor’s White Coat

    October 12, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    “Why do black people suffer more health problems than other groups? What do these challenges mean in their everyday lives? How do their struggles play out before a largely white medical community? How can we begin to solve these seemingly intractable problems?” Dr. Damon Tweedy raises and discusses these questions in his new book, “Black […]

  • Jim Martin as a Catalyst

    October 6, 2015 at 1:48 am

    I know the kind of candidate the Republicans need to beat Hillary Clinton or any other Democratic candidate in next fall’s presidential election. It is not any of those running now. That party needs somebody smart who can get along with the far right in the party without frightening the middle-of-the-road voters in the fall. […]

  • Seeing a sheriff’s real challenges through fiction

    September 28, 2015 at 11:40 am

    Just what does a North Carolina sheriff do these days? Retired District Court Judge Stanley Peele, writing about Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood, says that the concept of law enforcement officers has changed from “authority, power and prestige” to one of problem solving. Peele quotes Sheriff Blackwood, “When people are in distress, when they have […]

  • His most hopeful book, says Ron Rash

    September 23, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Ron Rash, Western Carolina professor and author of five previous novels including “Serena,” captures his beloved North Carolina mountains at their best. And their worst. In his new book, “Above the Waterfall,” his main characters, though possessing overwhelmingly positive qualities, have flaws that complicate our admiration for them. For instance, there are two narrators. One, […]

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