Category Archives: degraffenrj

Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-ravaged Hospital by Sheri Fink

Five Days at Memorial: Life and Death in a Storm-Ravaged Hospital is a much longer and expanded version of the Pulitzer Prize winning article Sheri Fink wrote about the suspicious deaths in a New Orleans hospital following hurricane Katrina. The … Continue reading

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Call the Midwife, Season 1 (DVD)

These poignant and lightly humorous episodes are based on Jennifer Worth’s memoirs about midwifery in East London in the 1950′s.  The nurses and nuns that run Nonnatus House are well developed, and I especially adore nurse Chummy Browne’s fish out of water … Continue reading

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Swan Peak by James Lee Burke

Dave, Molly and Clete have gone to Montana for a peaceful summer vacation.  But where they go murder seems to follow and Swan Peak is no exception.  Two college students are brutally murdered close to the ranch where the friends … Continue reading

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Benediction by Kent Haruf

Haruf once again sets his story—this slice of life—in Holt, Colorado, a fictional town on the high plains.  Dad and Mary Lewis have been married for over 50 years.  The book chronicles the last few months of Dad’s life as … Continue reading

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The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton

This sometimes drawn-out tale revolves around the life of Dorothy Nicolson and her family.  It moves between present day, 1959 and 1942.  Chapter headings help the reader keep track of the time frame.  Dorothy is dying and her daughter, Laurel, … Continue reading

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American Ghost by Janis Owens

The author has been compared to Marjorie Rawlings and other famous Southern writers who provide insight into Southern culture.  This interesting saga delves into the culture of a backwater town in northern Florida where the residents – an inbred mix … Continue reading

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Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver

Dellarobia wishes her life were even a fraction as interesting as her name.  Pregnant and married at 17, she lives with her husband in a home his parents built for them in the shadow of their own and under their … Continue reading

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Prague Fatale by Phillip Kerr

This rambling mystery moves from Berlin to Prague as Bernie Gunther, recently on the Eastern Front with the German army, resumes his work as detective.  While investigating the death of a Dutch railway worker he becomes involved with a local … Continue reading

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The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon

Mental institutions were exposed for the unspeakable places they were in the 1970’s.  The exposure led to the closing of most of these human warehouses and the development of education and community services for families and individuals with disabilities.  Laws … Continue reading

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White Doves at Morning by James Lee Burke

Burke strays from his usual mystery genre, but not from his geography.   This Civil War tale is in part a story of his ancestors, Robert Perry and Willie Burke, and is set in and around New Iberia, Louisiana.  Willie is … Continue reading

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