We posted the first set of your submitted book reviews right here, and now it's time for some more. Thanks to everyone who has participated so far, and don't forget to submit your review before Summer Reading ends!
So, what have y'all been reading?
Sycamore Row by John Grisham
This book takes us back to the first novel Grisham wrote, but with an entirely new attornay and trial. Even though I expected a happy enging,
I cried in the last chapter and I hope to see more of Attorney Jack in a future novel.
Bad Monkey by Carl Hiassen
Not quite as good/funny as his earlier books, but Hiassen still has a sharp voice about Florida. I wish he were syndicated in the local newspaper. Despite the title, the monkey really isn't the star of the show in this book. I was most intrigued by the former policeman, demoted to restaurant inspector. Despite his demotion, he continues on the trail of at least one murderer and takes a few knocks (physical and psychological) along the eay. And he continues to lose weight since he can't stand eating at any of the restaurants he has been inspecting. The description of bugs and other stuff in the restaurant food almost made me give up eating, too. And the hurricane description was wonderful; I remember living in Boston 25 years ago when we thought a hurricane was going to hit, so we stayed up all night waiting for it. Of course it missed us and we still had to go to work the next day. This is a great introduction to Hiaasen's work. After a reader finishes it, he/she will be anxious to try somne of the earlier works (I hope).
Terminal City by Linda Fairstein
I have been reading Fairstein since her first cook came out and she donated copies to me for a fundraiser I was doing. In addition to "who dun it",
she fills the pages with history of New York and the various crime sites. I feel I know Grand Central Terminal and New York better than before. Great Book!
Delilah by Sheila M. Goss
This book is fantastic. A lot of Drama. I Wish there was a Part 2
Rowing the Atlantic by Roz Savage
Nuts—in a good way. She describes her 100 days of rowing 12 hours to cover 3,000 miles with broken oars, cold food, and blistered, calloused hands and butt. Not the first woman to row alone across the ocean, but still extraordinary.
Hard Sci Fi. What a delight. A complement to "Terraforming Earth" and a contrast to the wretched "Foundation" series. Given the vast timescale and the number of characters, one has to expect character development to be less deep and cut the author some slack. There are bound to be shortcuts, but the novel is nice combination of literary writing and Hard Science Fiction.
The book might be fast-paced for a reader not familiar with the notions of hard science fiction, so it might be better for some to read other books before this one. I can see that those who are not aficionados of hard science fiction might not enjoy it.
In this book, space travel and communications take tens or hundreds or years, at least. It recognizes that, the Earth will not be able to support life at some reasonably well-defined point in the future and that complex life (people) will die out before then. There is a nod to climate change due to the passage of the solar system through dust and gas and to mankind's ability to alter global climate. There is mention of the next ice age. (Check out the nonfiction "Life and Death of Planet Earth" if you want to know more.) It features machine sapience. It recognizes, that, if physics and mankind's technology, economics, and politics allow interstellar travel, it is theoretically possible to colonize the galaxy over the course of millions of years.
The Man Who Was Poe by Avi
I bought this children's book on Wednesday night when I failed to find another John Bellairs book; I finished reading it on Friday night. While I thought that it lacked the mixture of spookiness and coziness that I associate with Bellairs, I enjoyed the story and the clever use of Edgar Allan Poe/ Auguste Dupin* as a character. I also appreciated the setting, in chilly, misty, Providence, RI in November 1848. *In light of the popularity of the "Sherlock" and "Elementary" TV shows, I'll mention that Poe invented Sherlock Holmes; a certain hack from the Island of Britain copied Poe's work but changed the detective's nationality from French to British and his name from Dupin to Holmes. The problem with this novel by Avi is that it will have limited appeal to readers that don't already recognize Dupin as one of Poe's characters and a detective.
The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History by John M. Barry
Fascinating nonfiction. So well-written that it was a very fast read. The story, which included the evolution of scientific medicine, WWI, early advances in (bacterial)
germ fighting, and the daunting challenge of dealing with enemies that can't be seen with a (light) microscope—viruses, drew me into a subject area that had not
appealed to me previously.