I borrowed this book from the local library. “A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True” by Brigid Pasulka is a fascinating fictional book tells the stories of two generations of the same family in Poland. The chapters alternated between the grandparents’ experience in WWII war years & beyond, and their granddaughter’s life in the mid 1990’s living their dream in Krakow after leaving Half-Village, the rural home. I found the story of the grandparents more interesting. The golden handed “Pigeon” who falls in love with the beautiful Anielica (who looks like Veronica Lake) and builds her parents a new house in their small hamlet before he asks for her hand, only for their future to be interrupted by the impending German invasion. The author fashions the tale in an almost fairytale like narrative spiced with European / Yiddish humor which I found hilarious. The chapters about the granddaughter, Beata, reveal to the reader the new Poland; while Beata’s own life is being put on hold. Instead of harsh rural life it’s a harsh city life where the Germans invade as tourists and the only thing the English try to liberate are women’s underwear. Along the way the reader gets…
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” by L. Frank Baum is the first of 15 books in the fictional Oz series and tells the story of Dorothy, a girl from Kansas who was swooped with her dog Toto by a mighty wind to the Land of Oz.
The third book of the series if finely crafted much like the first. Larsson does a skillful job at interlacing between the good and the bad, the intelligence agencies, the police and the media. While the first book was about corporate takedowns, the second about the sex traffickers this one is more of a courtroom drama. .There are still many elements which the first two books incorporate: Salander and Blomkovist punish their enemies, strong female characters, relaxed attitude toward sex and, as mentioned, strong opinions about government, corporations and sleazeballs in general..
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The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet is an epic which is meant to be read slowly and deliberately, the tale is smart and the story is fun. Even though the book incorporates shoguns and samurais, most of the account is carried by clerks and translators. The epic rescue attempt in a sanctuary surrounded by snow capped mountains is no less exciting than the description of diplomatic rituals and the “arse-licking pilgrimage” one must make before meeting the shogun.
The Kill Artist is a well written spy novel, filled with details in all the right places as well as several characters from Silva’s previous novels and wonderful political popcorn for those of us that care. I am looking forward to reading the rest of the series.
I borrowed this book from the local library. “The Gates” is a fictional story by Irish author John Connolly, which introduces us to Samuel Johnson and his beloved dachshund Boswell. Samuel is a strange boy who likes to confuse his teachers and dreams of getting his soon-to-be-divorced parents back together. In order to get a leg up on all the other kids during Halloween Samuel goes trick-o-treating two days before only to witness the gate to Hell opening up at 666 Crowley Road due to the rituals the owners playing at devil worship while at the exact time the Hadron Collider is working on the other side of Europe. No one believes poor Samuel that the end of Earth is near, demons are trying to kill him and that the neighbors are Satan’s minions. No one except Boswell and his friends Maria and Thomas. The book becomes a keystone- cops type of comedy, with the minions of Hell being roughed up and a lower entity demon – Nurd, The Scourge of Five Deities – becoming a lovable figure which I hope we’ll meet again. Even though I’m not the target audience for this book, I found this book…