Has it all: humor, mystery, science, history, and feminism

Book title: If I'd Killed Him When I Met Him...
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
If I'd Killed Him When I Met Him... - book cover picture

Sharyn McCrumb has succeeded brilliantly in writing a novel that is a decent murder mystery and yet also so much more. She manages to incorporate some interesting bits of Civil War-era history and lore, some little-known facts regarding the nature of a certain poison that figures prominently in the story, and also some thoughtful insights into the nature of contemporary American sexism and women's varying reactions to it. Through it all, McCrumb manages to keep her reader laughing; as she spins out the various threads that comprise her tale, she exhibits a devastating wit which she employs to perfection in illustrating the foibles of her characters and of human life in general.This was a book that once started, I had a hard time putting down. McCrumb always writes with grace and wit, and this is one of her very best efforts.

EAN: 9780345382290
Pages: 277
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Sharyn Mccrumb

An absolute must-read for anyone with a brain or a mind

Book title: What's Going on in There? : How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
What's Going on in There? : How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life - book cover picture

Or both. Dr. Eliot's treatment of the important subject of brain development is not only thorough and disciplined, but it is also enjoyably readable. Besides being indispensible for parents who want to give their child the best possible start in life, this book gives all people a deep understanding of their own minds and where they came from. The facts presented in the book are based on solid scientific research. But in addition, their relevance has been enhanced by Dr. Eliot's own experience as a mother. This is a rare combination of talents that delivers a truly enrichening read.

EAN: 9780553102741
Pages: 544
Publisher: Bantam
Lise Eliot

Wonderfully fresh translation

Book title: School for Wives
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
School for Wives - book cover picture

Bolt achieves with his translation of Moliere's classic comedy what David Hirson did with his 1991 play, La Bete. While remaining true to the general language of Moliere's time and rhyming couplets in iambic pentameter, Bolt is still able to sprinkle modern touches that make the comedy pop out even more. Bolt's British wit sparkles through the French comedy, making for an enjoyable read as well as performance. Interesting, too, is Nicholas Dromgoole's introduction, which makes some incredibly interesting points yet also keeps in tone with Bolt's take on Moliere's commedia dell'arte-influenced School For Wives. Whether you're a fan of Moliere or a novice to his works, Bolt's translation of The School for Wives is a fantastic read that keeps the comedy alive, even after 350 years.

EAN: 9780573013997
Publisher: Gardners Books

A true American Hero

Book title: The Fire Cat (An I Can Read Book)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
The Fire Cat (An I Can Read Book) - book cover picture

Okay, maybe that is an exaggeration, but Fire Cat was one of the first books I read as a child. I was thrilled when I found a beat-up copy at a garage sale a few years ago, thinking I had the last copy on earth. Then, working in a local bookstore, I saw it was still in print. How cool is that? Very cool, my friends, very cool.I highly recommend this for your favorite little people. It teaches that everyone has goodness within them, if given a chance.

EAN: 9780060201968
Pages: 64
Publisher: HarperCollins

Cornwell knows the heart of war

Book title: Rebel
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Audio Cassette
Rebel - book cover picture

Oh to write like Bernard Cornwell! How is it that an Englishman so aptly portrays the inner conflicts of a northern Bostonian who has joined up with the Confederate cause? Perhaps Starbuck, the protagonist in this 3 volumn epic has a counterpart in the successful Sharp series circa the Napoleanic wars. The new Rebel is Nate Starbuck and he's just as dashing, daring, and reckless as the older hero. It's evident that Cornwell visited battlefields on-site and did extensive research prior to writing this novel. But true to Cornwell's style he is able to blend in the good/evil antagonist Washington Falconer, founder of Falconer's Brigade, add a dash of the sexy harlot Ms Truslow, and debate the morals of the good vs evil via Reverand Starbuck the hero's father and you have not just a good novel, but a great novel!

EAN: 9780001050068
Publisher: Harpercollins Pub Ltd
Bernard Cornwell


Book title: The Last Enchantment
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
The Last Enchantment - book cover picture

I have always been disappointed by so many author's summary disposal of Merlin. For such an interesting, mighty figure, he is generally accorded little dignity in regards to his end. Not so in "The Last Enchantment," the best book in Mary Stewart's Merlin Trilogy. FINALLY Merlin is given the respect he deserves. Also, I really enjoyed Ms. Stewart's portrayal of Nimue--the love affair between her and Merlin was incredibly touching, a scene I often find myself flipping back to. And the ending...well, I won't spoil it. I'll just say...it was perfect. This is a wonderful book.

EAN: 9780340258293
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Mary Stewart


Book title: Faces in the Clouds: A New Theory of Religion
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Faces in the Clouds: A New Theory of Religion - book cover picture

"Guthrie proposes that religion is basically an outgrowth of the natural human propensity, probably hardwired in by evolution, to interpret vague or random appearances anthropomorphically. That is, we naturally tend to see faces in clouds or the image of Jesus in a spaghetti ad. This makes perfect sense from an evolutionary viewpoint since it would be beneficial to survival to have a perceptual strategy in which vague appearances were interpreted as (possibly hostile) humans. Better to think we see a glaring face and find that we're wrong than to miss seeing an enemy. Clearly, much of the human propensity towards religiosity could be explained in this way. Guthrie argues his case well." -- Keith M. Parson

EAN: 9780195098914
Pages: 336
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Stewart Elliott Guthrie

Excellent from start to finish

Book title: Lamb : The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Lamb : The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal - book cover picture

This is clearly the most entertaining book I can recall reading. As long as the reader is not thin skinned as far as religious matters go, he will be entertained with the adventures of two young men who are trying to find their identites. Mr. Moore takes a number of liberties with the accepted stories, but on the other hand provides fictional but believeable answers to much of what is left out of the traditional gospels. I always wondered what the "H" stood for when someone said, "Jesus H. Christ". Now I know.

EAN: 9780380813810
Pages: 464
Publisher: Harper Paperbacks
Christopher Moore

Stolen Kisses=Great Book

Book title: Stolen Kisses (Love Stories)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Stolen Kisses (Love Stories) - book cover picture

Stolen Kisses by Liesa Abrams is one of the best romance books I have read, and romance books are all I read. If you like any of the other books in the Love Stories series, you will definitely enjoy this one. On page 156, the main character, Laura, is talking about Mark, her best friends friend, and she says this, "He had turned into a good friend despite any weirdness between them". I think that this quote goes to show no matter how weird two people get after a period of time, they should still be friends. You never know if that person could be possibly one of you best friends. Also, in this book, it seems like that friendship is a key essential in life. I think that Mark and Laura are good friends because of one little kiss at a party because they don't want a possible friendship to just vanish when you never know what could have been. Like I said, I really enjoyed this book but, this book isn't for everyone, guys mostly, unless you really like romance.

EAN: 9780553492880
Pages: 192
Publisher: Bantam Books for Young Readers
Liesa Abrams

How can you?

Book title: Ilium
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Ilium - book cover picture

Explain a Dan Simmons book? Fat chance but...Ever wonder what it would be like to stand on the battlefields of Troy while the battle was happening? Mr. Simmons puts you there. Ever imagine what the Gods of the ancients did to entertain themselves? Mr. Simmons makes you a "fly on the wall." Ever wonder what it would be like to make love to Helen? The "face that launched a thousand ships?" Well guess what?

Mr. Simmons has penned a fantastic flight of imagination that is simply astounding. There is so much going on in a Dan Simmons book i.e., philosophy, history, sociology, fantasy, adventure, and always entertaining sometimes hilarious dialog between characters makes the task of reviewing rather daunting and even professional reviewers can't give a Dan Simmons story justice.

Just enjoy "Illium" and be sad in the knowledge that you have to wait a while for the second volume. Damn, I hate the waiting. Hurry up Dan!

EAN: 9780380817924
Pages: 752
Publisher: HarperTorch
Dan Simmons

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