Category Archives: boutrosk

Sister Queens: the Noble, Tragic Lives of Katherine of Aragon and Juana, Queen of Castile by Julia Fox

I was so excited to see this book!  Sister Queens is a carefully researched, dual biography of two of Isabella and Ferdinand’s daughters – Katherine became a queen by marrying the heir to the English throne, later crowned Henry VIII, … Continue reading

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The History of White People by Nell Irvin Painter

Wonderful, thought provoking scholarship.  Not easy reading, exactly. After all, this is sociology, ethnology, intellectual history, anthropology, etc.  But Painter has delineated concepts so carefully and written so gracefully and clearly that The History of White People is quite accessible.  It is … Continue reading

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Fear Index by Robert Harris

Privacy invasion, stock market manipulation, character assassination…The Fear Index  is all so timely!  “Torn from the headlines”, as they say.  The capacity for causing all this mayhem, plus more, is not here just yet, but not too far in the … Continue reading

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Watergate: a novel by Thomas Mallon

 If you remember how Watergate unfolded, this fictionalized character study will read much easier than if you know it only as a political chronology.  The author has flipped common perspectives about the era on end, and in this novel presents … Continue reading

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Shiny Objects: Why We Spend Money We Don’t Have in Search of Happiness We Can’t Buy by James A. Roberts

I picked this book out because of my enduring fascination with how the economic situation got to where it is today.  I’m a major tightwad…a saver against that inevitable rainy day, when I lose my job, my health, or my … Continue reading

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The Last Queen by C.W. Gortner

The Last Queen is a fictionalized autobiography of Juana of Castile, known to history as Juana la Loca, the daughter of Isabella and Ferdinand of Spain.  The third child of their Catholic Majesties is betrothed to Philip the Fair, Duke … Continue reading

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Counterstrike: the Untold Story of America’s Secret Campaign Against Al Qaeda by Eric Schmitt

Schmitt’s Counterstrike is as lucid, clear and comprehensive an explanation of the country’s foreign policy direction as we are ever likely to have in non-government speak.  The book is not an apology, defense or condemnation.  It begins with a fact … Continue reading

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Zorro by Isabelle Allende

Oh, what fun!!!  Allende has invented a beginning for the Zorro stories.  I remember the TV series and I was totally smitten with the swashbuckling, mysterious avenger.  Okay, I was just a kid, but the TV Zorro was a much … Continue reading

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Crossbones by Nuruddin Farah

In Crossbones, two Americans from Minneapolis’ Somali expatriate community, in search of a runaway teenager, navigate the dangerous Mogadishu – a city torn apart by civil war, criminal anarchy, and religious extremists.  One of the men, Malik, a war correspondent, … Continue reading

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Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean: How a Generation of Swashbuckling Jews Carved out an Empire in the New World in Their Quest for Treasure, Religious Freedom – and Revenge by Edward Kritzler

Pirates, political intrigue, gold, tropical islands …and hidden histories!  I love it!  Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean is a grand topic.  And instead of being based on just lively imagination, there’s actually some real information and research here….though some of … Continue reading

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