7 Centuries and 6 Families of Paris

Book Review of “Paris: The Epic Novel of the City of Lights” by Edward Rutherfurd. Epic is a word that has been bandied about far too often, and putting it into the subtitle of this novel might seem a bit pretentious. However, it is precisely the word that use be used about this book, seeing … Continue reading 7 Centuries and 6 Families of Paris

21st Century Fairy Tales?

Book Review of "Ninety-Nine Stories of God" by Joy Williams. Some book reviews are harder to write than others are, and this is going to be one of those. As I noted in another review I wrote for the website Book Browse (review coming soon), I'm not a fan of religious fiction, including Jewish religious … Continue reading 21st Century Fairy Tales?

Gritty New York Stories and Poems

Book Review of "Resident Aliens" by Beth Porter. "Resident Aliens" by Beth Porter is actually a collection of writings. On the menu is a novella, four poems and three short stories, all focusing on New York in the 60s. Before I discuss the various elements of this book, there is a small warning - nothing … Continue reading Gritty New York Stories and Poems

Two World Wars, Two Women, Thousands of Letters

Book review of Letters from Skye by Jessica Brockmole. In March 1912, David Graham is a University student in Urbana, Illinois. He's just read a book of poetry by Elspeth Dunn, who lives on Scotland's Isle of Skye. Impressed, he decides to write to her, and thereby begins a correspondence that will change both their … Continue reading Two World Wars, Two Women, Thousands of Letters

A Literal Fly on the Wall

Book Review of "Jacob's Folly" by Rebecca Miller. Jacob Cerf was an impoverished, religious Jewish peddler in 18th Century Paris. Circumstance led him away from his family and faith and into a world of impious debauchery. 300 years later, he's back, but now he's a fly in 21st Century New York and involved in the … Continue reading A Literal Fly on the Wall

Less than Picture Perfect

Book Review of "Lessons in French" by Hilary Reyl. What budding artist wouldn't grab the chance to work in Paris with the world-famous photojournalist Lydia Schell? For Katherine, who just finished Yale, it will also be like going home, having lived in Paris as a young girl when her father was dying from cancer. Back … Continue reading Less than Picture Perfect

A Socially Capital Laugh

Book Review for "Various Pets Alive & Dead" by Marina Lewycka. Their twenty years of commune life didn't turn out as reaffirming as Marcus and Doro had hoped it would be, so maybe it is time to conform and get married. This isn't news their children ever expected to get, but neither Clara nor Serge … Continue reading A Socially Capital Laugh

Hollywood Secrets and Pasts

Book Review of "Melting the Snow on Hester Street" by Daisy Waugh. Its 1929 and movie director Max Beecham and his actress wife Eleanor hobnob with Charlie Chaplain, Greta Garbo, Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, John Barrymore, Gloria Swanson and more. To them, Max and Eleanor are the happiest, most loving couple in Hollywood. However, the … Continue reading Hollywood Secrets and Pasts

"The Wednesday Sisters" Sequel Story

Book Review of "The Wednesday Daughters" by Meg Waite Clayton. Ally, Hope's mother, has died. Not long before her death, she made several visits the Lake District in England, researching a biography of Beatrix Potter. Hope, together with Anna Page and Julie are going to Ally's cottage to pack up her things and say goodbye. … Continue reading "The Wednesday Sisters" Sequel Story

A fine (gay) romance

Book Review of "The Apple Polisher" by Heidi Belleau. Christian wants to be a preschool teacher, and he's enrolled in a prestigious MA program where he has to be a model citizen. But that isn't as easy as it seems when you're gay. With no money, he finds the only place he can afford. When … Continue reading A fine (gay) romance