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Monday, March 4, 2013 - Page updated at 05:00 a.m.

Staff picks: ‘Doctor Who,’ bourbon, ‘War Games’


‘Doctor Who’ (11th Version)

My 18-year-old son coerced me into watching the latest version of the beloved British TV series “Doctor Who,” and I am a convert. Matt Smith, the latest and 11th version of the Doctor, is a revelation — funny, charming, quirky and smart, as are the mind-bending plots. You can find the Smithian seasons (2010 and 2011) on Netflix — for the latest, tune in to BBC America. I promise — you’ll be bigger on the inside if you do.

Mary Ann Gwinn,
Seattle Times book editor


Pappy van Winkle bourbon

The much-loved Pappy van Winkle bourbon is a cult brand chased by many connoisseurs and casual drinkers. Psst — here’s one of the great deals around: Get a flight of three samples: a (1 ounce) pour of Pappy 12-year, Pappy 15-year and a Sazerac 6-year rye for $25 at The Golden Beetle, 1744 N.W. Market St., in Ballard.

Tan Vinh,
Seattle Times staff writer


‘War Games’

Wright Morris (“The Works of Love”) is best known as a Midwestern writer. But this curious novel, written in 1952 and not published until 1972 because Morris’ editor had no idea what to make of it, is better described as “Brooklyn Gothic.” A matter-of-fact gender-bender before gender-bending was the fashion, it concerns an elderly army colonel whose encounter with members of a Viennese immigrant family leads him into a world where transformations of the self take fantastical and sinister turns. I recently reread it for the first time in 30 years and marveled at how well the whole seamless, droll, beautifully written package held up.

Michael Upchurch,
Seattle Times arts writer

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