Pieces of Lucy’s Life

Book Review of "Anything is Possible" by Elizabeth Strout. With this book, Strout returns to her connected short story format, which she used for her well-known book, “Olive Kitteridge,” but this time she does so with a type of follow-up to her novel “My Name is Lucy Barton.” These nine stories take place in the … Continue reading Pieces of Lucy’s Life

Pulling a “Nellie Bly”!

Book Review of “Woman 99” by Greer Macallister. How far would you go to save your sister? What if she’s the one who saved your life many times throughout your childhood? Would you risk everything, possibly even your own sanity? This is the dilemma that Charlotte Smith faces when her sister Phoebe is put into … Continue reading Pulling a “Nellie Bly”!

Night Witches and Chasing Evil

Book Review of “The Huntress” by Kate Quinn. By the beginning of 1950, the efforts to find Nazi war criminals and bring them to justice for their horrendous and unthinkable crimes was already on the wane, except for the biggest of fish. Still, some Nazi hunters couldn’t let go of finding any of these criminals, … Continue reading Night Witches and Chasing Evil

Seasoned for Stealth

Book Review for “The Chef’s Secret” by Crystal King. In the 1500s in Italy, there lived a man, Bartolomeo Scappi, who is known to this day as one of Europe’s most creative and talented chefs. Scappi, who died in 1577, rose from being a humble cook to a master who devised elaborate dishes and meals … Continue reading Seasoned for Stealth

My “Hello” to Philip Roth!

  Book Review of “Goodbye Columbus” a novella and five short stories by Philip Roth. When I heard of Roth’s passing, I realized that while I knew the name well, and I’d seen some films based on his writings, I never read any of his books. In an attempt to correct that situation, I immediately … Continue reading My “Hello” to Philip Roth!

The Tint and the Taint

  Book Review of “The Blue” by Nancy Bilyeau. In the author’s notes of this book, Bilyeau calls this “a spy story set amid the rivalry of eighteenth-century porcelain factories,” in which the author tells the story of Geneviève Planché, who becomes entangled in the intrigue behind discovering a new shade of blue that is … Continue reading The Tint and the Taint

The Beauty of Genius

Book Review of “The Only Woman in the Room” by Marie Benedict. The name Hedy Lamarr might not mean much to many younger people these days, even less so will the name Hedwig Kiesler, with or without the additional names of her many husbands. But Hedy Lamarr was a very popular screen and stage actress … Continue reading The Beauty of Genius

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

Inconvenient Separations

  Book Review of “Brides in the Sky: Stories and a Novella” by Cary Holladay. This book is a collection of eight short stories and a novella, which include the following: Brides in the Sky Shades Comanche Queen Fairy Tales Interview with Etta Place, Sweetheart of the Sundance Kid Ghost Walk Operator Hay Season A … Continue reading Inconvenient Separations

The Rise and Fall of Ragtime

  Book Review of Temptation Rag: A Novel by Elizabeth Hutchison Bernard. Back in the late 19th century in America, the latest rage was ragtime music. While the first name that might come to mind for us today is Scott Joplin, the origins of this musical genre predated him by quite a bit. In the … Continue reading The Rise and Fall of Ragtime