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  • Senator proposes unconventional approaches to character building

    "The Vanishing American Adult: Our Coming-of-Age Crisis -- and How to Rebuild a Culture of Self-Reliance" by Ben Sasse. St. Martin's Press (New York, 2017). 306 pp., $27.99. There are two subjects U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse, a Republican from Nebraska, deems off-limits while analyzing what he calls "America's coming-of-age crisis:" sex and politics.

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  • Enjoyable bio looks at McDonald's businessman, his philanthropist wife

    "Ray and Joan: The Man Who Made the McDonald's Fortune and the Woman Who Gave It All Away" by Lisa Napoli. Dutton Books (New York, 2016). 353 pp., $27. Ray Kroc was driven to succeed. The first 50 years of his life he hustled to sell paper cups and then milkshake machines. He supported his wife and daughter in a little house in the Chicago area but never hit the big time. But he never gave up on his dreams, and he continually looked for opportunities to prosper.

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  • Fans of Jesuit author will find surprises in collection of his works

    "James Martin: Essential Writings," selected and with an introduction by James T. Keane. Orbis Books (Maryknoll, New York, 2017). 245 pp., $22. No matter how many of the bestselling books authored by Jesuit Father James Martin you have read, a great deal of what's in this book -- a volume in the publisher's "Modern Spiritual Masters Series" -- is likely to be unfamiliar. While it includes some brief excerpts from his most popular books ("The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything," "Jesus: A Pilgrimage," "A Jesuit Off-Broadway" and "Between Heaven and Mirth"), most of what you'll find here comes from articles by Father Martin that appeared in various periodicals including America (over 200 to date), the Tablet, Huffington Post and Portland, the University of Portland's alumni magazine. James T. Keane does the author's many fans a service, then, by presenting them with material they might otherwise never know about.

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