Winter won't officially begin until nearly two more weeks pass, but a winter storm is plowing through much of the eastern part of the U.S. Monday, bringing a dangerous mix of snow, ice, and freezing rain. More than a thousand flights have been cancelled.
"Heavy snow fell Sunday in the Mid-Atlantic, with more than 8 inches reported in Philadelphia and a foot in nearby Newark, Del.," the AP reports.
From the National Weather Service:
"A complicated storm extending from the Great Lakes/Northeast to the Central Gulf Coast will move northeastward to Southeastern Canada and off the East Coast by Tuesday. The system will produce freezing rain/sleet over parts of the Mid-Atlantic that will change over to rain by Monday afternoon. Snow will develop over the Great Lakes into New England through Monday evening."
As of early Monday morning, airline tracker Flightaware.com said that 1,175 flights had been cancelled that were scheduled to travel in the U.S.
Much of that travel trouble began at the airport at Dallas-Fort Worth, where more than 350 flights have been canceled, according to Flightaware. Dallas was shellacked in up to four inches of ice when the storm came through on its way east, according to NPR member station KERA. Many schools and roads will be closed Monday, the station says.
KERA also says that more than 115,000 people in North Texas lost electrical service over the weekend because of the storm — and that the temperatures in Dallas aren't expected to touch 40 degrees until Wednesday.
The most active portions of the storm are now strung out in an area from Virginia into New England; areas that were hit with snow this weekend — such as New York and Philadelphia — could see anywhere from 1-6 inches early this week, according to AccuWeather.
"This snow will cause headaches for millions on Tuesday across the I-95 corridor, especially those taking to the roads," meteorologist Brian Lada writes.
In the West, a mass of cold air has brought bone-chilling cold to areas that already endured the winter storm.
In Montana, for instance, Missoula's KPAX TV is predicting a high of 17 Monday, with a low of 6 below zero.
And a separate system from western Canada will move into the Northern Plains and bring snow to parts of that area and the Rockies, according to the National Weather Service.
The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.
- John Williams' novel Stoner sold a scant 2,000 copies when it was released almost 50 years ago. An understated novel about a Missouri academic named William Stoner, it went out of print the following year. But through a mysterious, even alchemical process, Stoner became one of the most talked-about books of 2013. Republished in 2006 by New York Review Books Classics, it was celebrated in the press. The novelist Colum McCann rhapsodized about it in The Guardian, calling it "one of the great forgotten novels of the past century ... so beautifully paced and cadenced that it deserves the status of classic." The following year, The New York Times called it "a perfect novel." But it wasn't until Anna Gavalda translated it into French in 2011 that the book saw real commercial success, becoming a bestseller across much of Europe. That success began to seep into the English-speaking world. Last week, the U.K. bookstore Waterstones named it book of the year. Waterstones' managing editor, James Daunt, said, "It is incredible that Stoner had effectively disappeared and wonderful that a wave of recommendation and word of mouth has seen this exhilarating novel sweep all before it in 2013."
- Literary celebrations of Nelson Mandela continue, with Maya Angelou writing and performing a poem for the late South African leader. "Yes, Mandela's day is done," she said in a video released by the U.S. State Department. "Yet we, his inheritors, will open the gates wider for reconciliation." Meanwhile, the novelist Ayana Mathis writes in a meditation on Mandela: "That word, 'heroism,' like 'leader' or 'courage,' is inadequate. It breaks like rock in confrontation with the man himself."
- In Bookforum, Heather Havrilesky compares literary contemporaries Nora Ephron and Joan Didion: "When life gave Ephron lemons ... she made a giant vat of really good vodka-spiked lemonade and invited all of her friends and her friends' friends over to share it, and gossip, and play charades. Whereas when life gave Joan Didion lemons, she stared at them for several months, and then crafted a haunting bit of prose about the lemon and orange groves that were razed and paved over to make Hollywood, in all of its sooty wretchedness — which is precisely what this mixed-up world does to everything that's fresh and young and full of promise."
The Best Book Coming Out This Week:
- Published by the literary magazine n+1, No Regrets: Three Discussions is billed as "a book of women talking about the processes of becoming themselves." These conversations about books and life from women, including writers Elif Batuman and Emily Gould, feel at once intimate and erudite. Editor Dayna Tortorici writes in her introduction, "Women speak to one another differently in rooms without men. Not better, not more honestly, not more or less intelligently — just differently, and in a way one doesn't see portrayed as often as one might like."