Sunday, February 19, 2017

Review: The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Once again, against my better judgment, I fell into the trap of the best seller list. Expecting a "thriller," I found instead an annoying and quite unbelievable main character, whose outreach to every other character fails to ring true.

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Review: The Moon Is Down

The Moon Is Down The Moon Is Down by John Steinbeck
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This short novel was used world-wide in a propaganda campaign to show the effects of an invasion by an unnamed army upon a conquered people. It was published in 1942 at the zenith of Nazi Germany's power and had an extraordinary impact as Allied propaganda. The story shows the power of ideas in the face of brutal force.

Despite efforts by the Nazis and the Fascists, it was secretly translated into French, Norwegian, Dutch, Danish, Swedish, German, Iranian and Russian.

Because of the current American political atmosphere, I found it particularly interesting to read how some people, even while questioning internally, follow blindly the ideas put forth by their leaders.

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Review: Commonwealth

Commonwealth Commonwealth by Ann Patchett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the story of how six children are affected when divorce splits their families. It begins at a christening party for Franny Keating and ends more than fifty years later. In presenting each person's story, Patchett intertwines his/her involvement with others throughout the years. This is a compelling book because of its truthfulness in recognizing that life decisions are never simple, and that happiness is often elusive.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Review: Let Me Be Frank With You

Let Me Be Frank With You Let Me Be Frank With You by Richard Ford
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

In four separate stories Frank Bascombe, older now, takes a philosophical view of his two marriages, his friendships, and his life as a former realtor and resident of the Jersey Shore which is still affected by Hurricane Sandy's desolation. While his wife is a grief counselor for the hurricane's victims at the shore, Frank, now ensconced inland in Haddam, welcomes returning military at the airport and reads to the blind on a local radio station. He has a lot of time to let his thoughts run the spectrum of life's experiences - humor, illness, friendships, and sorrow. Well done.

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