Monthly Archives: January 2011

Easy A

Easy A is an absolutely brilliant movie! Emma Stone is fantastic in the lead role, and the rest of the cast are terrific, too. The script is incredibly smart, sharp, hilariously funny and emotionally resonant. The movie shows some of … Continue reading

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Love Songs from a Shallow Grave by Colin Cotterill

And yet another undiscovered author!!  Who would have thought that a Laotian coroner trying to unravel mysteries set in Laos in the 1970s would be at all gripping or absorbing? Colin Cotterill recreates  the environment and atmosphere of the struggling … Continue reading

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The Yellow House by Patricia Falvey

Set in Ulster in the early 20th Century, this is the tale of the “Irish issue” from the perspective of the O’Neill family – Eileen in particular. Her father raised her to be a warrior, and she had to fight … Continue reading

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Just Kids by Patti Smith

In her memoir of early life with photography icon Robert Mapplethorpe, Godmother of Punk Patti Smith has crafted an evocative tale of how two kids from New Jersey and Long Island, once factory workers and hustlers, rose to the upper … Continue reading

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Cold Magic

This book should be a mess, with it’s elaborate alternate history and mash-up of genre bits, but Elliott handles it all with incredible precision. There’s Jane Austen-esque romance, swashbuckling adventure, sharp dialogue, weird magic, mystery, intrigue, and several stunning plot … Continue reading

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The Distant Hours by Kate Morton

As a confirmed Anglophile who enjoys period pieces I find Kate Morton’s mix of modern day and “old England” to be very engaging. Her latest book story begins with Edie’s visit to Milderhurst Castle where the sisters Blythe have lived … Continue reading

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City of bones by Cassandra Clare

City of Bones tells the story of a fifteen-year-old girl, Clary, trying to make sense of her world when it is turned upside down. First she becomes involved with three “people” that no one else sees and what she sees is impossible. Then, her … Continue reading

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The Lost Garden by Helen Humphreys

Set in 1941, The Lost Garden is a beautifully written story about a thirty-five-year-old English woman who volunteers for the Women’s Land Army, an organization devoted to growing crops for the war effort. Gwen Davis, who works for the Royal Horticultural … Continue reading

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Shop Class as Soul Craft by Michael Crawford

The author chucked a lucrative professional career (he was head of an international NGO at the time) as he began to feel increasingly isolated from whatever it was his efforts were supposed to be producing.  He knew the organization was important, and … Continue reading

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Heroes of the Valley – Jonathan Stroud

If you read any of the Bartimaeus books, be prepared for a whole different kind of story in Heroes of the Valley. It isn’t entirely clear from the outset whether this book contains any myth or fantasy, or if it … Continue reading

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