NOT the Jakes Civil War Saga

Book title: North and South (Penguin Classics)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
North and South (Penguin Classics) - book cover picture

I am astounded to see so many glowing reviews here for the wrong book. Does no one at Amazon check these things? And how can so many readers, so enraptured with Jakes, fail to notice the very different author's name? Nevertheless. Mrs. Gaskell's NORTH AND SOUTH is gorgeous. It is a tale of self-discovery, labor upheaval in an increasingly industrialized England and, yes, love, and it is on a par with the best of George Eliot. It is ironic that readers here have mistakenly praised another book, for the rather generic title of Mrs. Gaskell's work had struck me as unfortunate from the start. One wonders just how more familiar her fine, fine novel would be under a name as commanding as, say, MIDDLEMARCH...

EAN: 9780140430554
Pages: 544
Publisher: Penguin USA (P)
Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

brilliant! stunning!

Book title: American Declarations: Rebellion and Repentance in American Cultural History
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
American Declarations: Rebellion and Repentance in American Cultural History - book cover picture

Where can one start when reviewing a masterpiece? I was thoroughly amazed at the depth, the riches, and the erudite manner of expression of Dr. Bush's magnum opus; and yet, here is a book that could be easily digested and admired by a person of general education as well. I recommend this volume to anyone with an interest in books, culture, religion, history, government, Christianity, the Bible, humor, and the Kennedy presidency. Move over, David Reynolds! Take notice, Stanley Fish!

EAN: 9780252024283
Pages: 224
Publisher: University of Illinois Press
Harold K. Bush

Kirkus is full of it

Book title: Deerskin
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Mass Market Paperback
Deerskin - book cover picture

Apparently, the Kirkus review is uncomfortable with the subject of rape. This book is about rape; not an "ordinary" rape, but an incestuous, violent, abusive rape.Actually, the book is about Lissar's recovery from her father's abuse. Details are given in other reviews, so I won't give them again.It is fantastic. You find yourself so involved with Lissar that you wonder at your own memory; whether it is whole or if you have spots you don't remember as she does. She is an all-encompassing character.Kirkus complained of nebulous kingdoms and faceless characters...personally, I think McKinley left them that way on purpose showing the universalness of the character and the situation. Only those who hide from reality can deny that such things happen to people every single day.It was outstanding, wonderful, involving and unique. I highly, highly reccomend it.

EAN: 9780441000692
Pages: 320
Publisher: Ace Books
Robin McKinley

Courage of a child

Book title: Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes - book cover picture

I read this book to my third graders as a kick off to our unit on Japan. The author's word choice makes it a beautiful book to read aloud. Her use of figurative language gives the children a vivid mental picture of Japanese things that they may not be familiar with in the United States. The book is wonderful in how it shows hope and courage in the true stoy of a little girl fighting for her life. My students were able to relate to many things in the story since Sadako is fairly close to their age. I believe this story taught my students that not all great books have happy endings. We were fortunate enough to go and view a performance of Sadako at our local Performing Arts Center. What a great opportunity to compare and contrast the book and the performance! My students saw first hand how authors/artists use artististic license to put their own twist on a story.

EAN: 9780399205200
Pages: 64
Publisher: Putnam Publishing Group
Eleanor Coerr

Goodkinds Crowning Masterpiece

Book title: Temple of the Winds (Sword of Truth, Book 4)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
Temple of the Winds (Sword of Truth, Book 4) - book cover picture

I have not even finished reading Temple of The Winds and already I think it is Goodkind's best book. This book brings new heights to character and plot development. Temple of the Winds is permeated with a anxious hopelessness that gives a sense of great urgency to everything that happens. You never know what will happen next, the Light is always in danger of being overwhelmed by the Dark but not quite; DON'T MISS IT!

EAN: 9780312890537
Pages: 528
Publisher: Tor Books
Terry Goodkind

Excellent book.

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

There are layers upon layers in this story of a house, a family, relationships and greed. I have loved the Mallory series from the start and this is one of the best. You learn more about Mallory's partner Riker and vulnerability of Charles, Mallory's friend and business partner, is a wonderful contrast to the character of Mallory. I would not recommend starting the series with this book, but it is a definitely an excellent addition to the series.

EAN: 7804252046587
Pages: 368
Publisher: Berkley
Carol O'Connell

My Favorite SF Novel

Book title: Ender's Game (Ender Quartet)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Ender's Game (Ender Quartet) - book cover picture

Simply put, Ender's Game is my favorite science fiction novel ever. Does this mean that it is the best Sci-Fi novel ever written? Not necessarily. However, I cannot contemplate what type of person could not relate to the endearing, yet abbrasive EnderWiggin. Card's characters alone make this worthy of your time. It doesn't hurt that there's a masterpiece of a plot backing the characters up, one that's continued in the other excellent books in the series. Give it a try...

EAN: 9780312853235
Pages: 256
Publisher: Tor Books
Orson Scott Card

The best of the bunch

Book title: One Nation: America Remembers September 11, 2001
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
One Nation: America Remembers September 11, 2001 - book cover picture

An extraordinary collection of photographs by Life photographers and essays that capture the history and emotions of 9/11 and the aftermath. The coverage is not just limited to the WTC, but Washington and Pennsylvania as well - the whole nation, in fact. Truly as inspiring as it is horrifying. There have been numerous books already on this subject but this one looks like its going to be the definitive volume to keep.

EAN: 9780316525404
Pages: 192
Publisher: Little, Brown
Life Magazine
editors of LIFE magazine

Don't Be Turned Off By The Title (Mystic)

Book title: The Corporate Mystic : A Guidebook for Visionaries with Their Feet on the Ground
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
The Corporate Mystic : A Guidebook for Visionaries with Their Feet on the Ground - book cover picture

As an avid reader of many business books I had this one shelved for the better part of the year, finally cracked it open only to reveal thoughts and introspective ideas how to "become" a better person and leader. Simple and obvious points are usually the ones we overlook everyday because we are usually looking for complex solutions to our problems. But the points outlined here are practical and immediately useful and implementable. If you think the problem is "out there", read this, you'll see what you and your actions (or inactions) did to contribute to the problem and what you can do now to head off problems. A MUST READ. AN EASY READ. AN ENJOYABLE READ. YOU MAY BE PUT OFF BY THE WORD "MYSTIC" - DON'T BE!!

EAN: 9780553374940
Pages: 240
Publisher: Bantam
Gay Hendricks
Kate Ludeman


Book title: Come Back to Me
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Come Back to Me - book cover picture

An excellent final book to the trilogy. In this one, we get to see Dragon meet his bride (running away and dressed as a boy, of course) and marry to further strengthen the peace between the Vikings and Saxons. Our heroine, Rycca, has had a troubling past and is struggling to overcome her fears and deal with a secret gift she has - and only Dragon can help her deal with it all. This book answered a lot of the questions left from the previous tales and the best part is we get to see our old friends. In this installment, the reader finally finds out who the villain behind the problems that Wolf and Hawk had in Litton's last two books.
An excellent read, as ususal, and I can't wait for her next book! June is very far away!

EAN: 9780553581645
Pages: 400
Publisher: Bantam
Josie Litton

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