Opening and Closing Wounds.

Book Review for “Swimming Back to Trout River” by Linda Rui Feng. Summary: “In the summer of 1986 in a small Chinese village, ten-year-old Junie receives a momentous letter from her parents, who had left for America years ago: her father promises to return home and collect her by her twelfth birthday. But Junie’s growing … Continue reading Opening and Closing Wounds.

Sunny Days.

Book Review for “Summer on the Bluffs” by Sunny Hostin. Summary: "Welcome to Oak Bluffs, the most exclusive black beach community in the country. Known for its gingerbread Victorian-style houses and modern architectural marvels, this picturesque town hugging the sea is a mecca for the crème de la crème of black society—where Michelle and Barack … Continue reading Sunny Days.

Tessa Tries Intrigue.

Book Review for “Death in the Grand Manor: A Tessa Crichton Mystery” by Anne Morice. Summary: “The narrator of this classic mystery is fashionable young actress, Tessa Crichton-obliged to turn private detective when murder strikes in the rural stronghold of Roakes Common. Leading hate-figures in the community are Mr. and Mrs. Cornford - the nouveaux … Continue reading Tessa Tries Intrigue.

Precious Memories.

Book Review for “The Last Night in London” by Karen White. Summary: "London, 1939. Beautiful and ambitious Eva Harlow and her American best friend, Precious Dubose, are trying to make their way as fashion models. When Eva falls in love with Graham St. John, an aristocrat and Royal Air Force pilot, she can’t believe her … Continue reading Precious Memories.

Industry about the Cottage.

Book Review for “The Jane Austen Society” by Natalie Jenner. Summary: Just after the Second World War, in the small English village of Chawton, an unusual but like-minded group of people band together to attempt something remarkable. One hundred and fifty years ago, Chawton was the final home of Jane Austen, one of England's finest … Continue reading Industry about the Cottage.

Smithies at War.

Book Review for “Band of Sisters” by Lauren Willig. Summary: "A scholarship girl from Brooklyn, Kate Moran thought she found a place among Smith’s Mayflower descendants, only to have her illusions dashed the summer after graduation. When charismatic alumna Betsy Rutherford delivers a rousing speech at the Smith College Club in April of 1917, looking … Continue reading Smithies at War.

They Came from Away.

Book Review for “The English Wife” by Adrienne Chinn. Summary: "VE Day 1945: As victory bells ring out across the country, war bride Ellie Burgess’ happiness is overshadowed by grief. Her charismatic Newfoundlander husband Thomas is still missing in action. Until a letter arrives explaining Thomas is back at home on the other side of … Continue reading They Came from Away.

The Philosophy of Novalis.

Book Review for “The Blue Flower” by Penelope Fitzgerald. Summary: "This is the story of Friedrich von Hardenberg--Fritz, to his intimates--a young man of the late 18th century who is destined to become one of Germany's great romantic poets. In just over 200 pages, Fitzgerald creates a complete world of family, friends and lovers, but … Continue reading The Philosophy of Novalis.

Reading French History.

Book Review for “The Paris Library” by Janet Skeslien Charles. Summary: “Paris, 1939: Young and ambitious Odile Souchet has it all: her handsome police officer beau and a dream job at the American Library in Paris. When the Nazis march into Paris, Odile stands to lose everything she holds dear, including her beloved library. Together … Continue reading Reading French History.

“… the Next Best Thing”?

Book Review for “The Charmed Wife” by Olga Grushin. Summary: “Cinderella married the man of her dreams--the perfect ending she deserved after diligently following all the fairy-tale rules. Yet now, two children and thirteen and a half years later, things have gone badly wrong and her life is far from perfect. One night, fed up, … Continue reading “… the Next Best Thing”?