In this new collection Toren explores the musicality of personal life in essays describing the spirit of the pre-dawn gloaming the allure of half-forgotten childhood memories the wisdom of Tin Pan Alley and the anxieties and satisfactions of singing in a choir. An ebullient energy animates both the book's lyrical prose and the author's breezy conversational approach to his chosen themes.
Writer editor book designer warehouse manager: John Toren has been involved in many aspects of the publishing world in the course of his career. His essays articles and reviews have appeared in a variety of regional and national publications including the History Channel Magazine Minnesota Monthly the Star-Tribune and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel and he received an Utne Independent Press Award for general excellence in 2007. He and his wife Hilary live in Golden Valley Minnesota.
"Reading John Toren's essays is like talking with a smart well-read observant thoughtful friend with an open mind and generous spirit. Conversational in style each spins out an experience a line of thinking a memory and/or a series of observations. ...There's not a pinch of pretension anywhere in this collection which explores the links between music and life sometimes obviously and sometimes obliquely." -Pamela Espeland MinnPost ArtScape
"Toren references Heidegger in the same paragraph as the wonderment at the bustle of a brewery taproom and the silence of a frozen lake at midnight. In other words the heart of this collection resides not just in the avenues through which Toren explores philosophical ideas but the dialogue he utilizes to bring them to life within the framework of our own society and culture... A highly detailed writer Toren makes it easy for readers to join along in the journey. Sometimes the path is physical sometimes conceptual but it always engaging-and just like any good journey you will always end satisfied and far from where you started." -Zach Butovich The Corresponder