Seligson, Susan

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Seligson, Susan

PERSONAL:

Married Howie Schneider (deceased, 2007). Education: Graduated from Boston University, 1980.

ADDRESSES:

Home—North Truro, MA. Agent—Susan Ramer, Don Congdon Associates Inc., 156 5th Ave., Ste. 625, New York, NY 10010.

CAREER:

Writer and journalist.

WRITINGS:

Going with the Grain: A Wandering Bread Lover Takes a Bite out of Life, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 2002.

Stacked: A 32DDD Reports from the Front, Bloomsbury (New York, NY), 2007.

CHILDREN'S BOOKS; WITH HOWIE SCHNEIDER

Amos: The Story of an Old Dog and His Couch, Joy Street Books (Boston, MA), 1987.

The Amazing Amos and the Greatest Couch on Earth, Joy Street Books (Boston, MA), 1989.

Amos, Ahoy! A Couch Adventure on Land and Sea, Joy Street Books (Boston, MA), 1990.

Amos Camps Out: A Couch Adventure in the Woods, Joy Street Books (Boston, MA), 1992.

Contributor to periodicals, including Salon.com, Atlantic Monthly, Redbook, Boston Globe Magazine, Outside, Allure, and the New York Times Magazine. Humor columnist for the Provincetown Banner (Provincetown, MA).

SIDELIGHTS:

Susan Seligson is a writer and journalist who contributes to a number of periodicals, including Salon.com, Atlantic Monthly, Redbook, Boston Globe Magazine, Outside, Allure, and the New York Times Magazine. Seligson started her book-writing career with her late husband, Howie Schneider. The pair wrote four children's books featuring Amos, an Irish setter who has a magical couch.

After a decade-long break in publishing books, Seligson published Going with the Grain: A Wandering Bread Lover Takes a Bite out of Life in 2002. Seligson traveled around the United States and a few international destinations in search of the cultural variety evident in the ways of making bread. Dotted with various bread recipes, the book covers French, Indian, Hasidic, Moroccan, Pueblan, Irish, southern American, and mass-produced American bread traditions. She compares her visits to the Wonder Bread factory in Maine, the largest bakery in the world, with the communal ovens or Morocco and gives accounts of her own personal interactions with the bakers along the way. Reviews for the bread book were mostly positive. Ravi Shenoy, writing in Library Journal, thought that ‘Seligson's breezy, lighthearted style … makes this a fun yet informative read.’ Mark Knoblauch described it as ‘a surprising, humane, thought-provoking examination of a topic too often taken for granted’ in a Booklist review. A critic writing in Kirkus Reviews wrote that the book was ‘energetic and certainly lively,’ but felt that Seligson's ‘jokey personal comments soon wear thin.’ A contributor to Publishers Weekly disagreed, concluding: ‘Seligson's debut essay collection is as smart and evocative as it often is laugh-out-loud funny."

In 2007 Seligson published Stacked: A 32DDD Reports from the Front, a personal book about the status of her DDD-sized breasts and people's fascination with them in general. She talks about the way her large breasts have benefited her in life and the ways that they have cast negative stereotypes on her in professional settings. Seligson also covers the role plastic surgery and breast augmentations have on the national psyche and on the women themselves. She also provides interesting factoids on breasts. Reviews for the memoir were mixed. A contributor to Publishers Weekly thought her ‘earthy merriment and compassionate humor triumph as she sure-footedly tours’ the topic of breasts, one ‘bound to elicit strong feelings ranging from adulation to derision.’ A contributor to Kirkus Reviews summarized the book as ‘fuzzy and forgettable.’ Ada Calhoun, writing in the New York Times Book Review, concluded: ‘Seligson is likable, if for no other reason than that she's absolutely dizzy with admiration for her assets. The book's superficiality actually makes her point well: it's not just construction workers who are distracted by large breasts."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

BOOKS

Seligson, Susan, Stacked: A 32DDD Reports from the Front, Bloomsbury (New York, NY), 2007.

PERIODICALS

Atlantic Monthly, March, 2007, review of Stacked, p. 112.

Booklist, November 15, 2002, Mark Knoblauch, review of Going with the Grain: A Wandering Bread Lover Takes a Bite out of Life, p. 563.

Bostonia (Boston University), winter, 2002, Jenny Brown, review of Going with the Grain.

Daily Mail (London, England), March 21, 2007, review of Stacked.

Entertainment Weekly, February 23, 2007, Tina Jordan, review of Stacked, p. 104.

Geographical, March 2004, Andrew Norgate, review of Going with the Grain, p. 95.

Kirkus Reviews, August 15, 2002, review of Going with the Grain, p. 1206; November 15, 2006, review of Stacked, p. 1166.

Library Journal, October 15, 2002, Ravi Shenoy, review of Going with the Grain, p. 87; January 1, 2007, Debra Moore, review of Stacked, p. 132.

New York Times Book Review, April 1, 2007, Ada Calhoun, review of Stacked, p. 21.

Observer (New York, NY), February 25, 2007, Rebecca Steinitz, review of Stacked.

Publishers Weekly, August 19, 2002, review of Going with the Grain, p. 73; November 6, 2006, Stefanie Marsh, review of Stacked, p. 46.

Times (London, England), March 20, 2007, review of Stacked.

ONLINE

Litter Box Web site,http://run4chocolate.wordpress.com/ (March 28, 2007), Mark Shanahan, author interview.