Tag: reviews

Death in Venice: The Aspern Papers

Posted June 30, 2015 by Lory in reviews / 16 Comments
Death in Venice: The Aspern Papers

Henry James, The Aspern Papers (1888) Henry James and I have not gotten along in the past. When I was compelled to read The Turn of the Screw in school, I was completely befuddled. Then I heard from other readers that James’s writing was convoluted or impenetrable, and I wasn’t interested in trying to break […]

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A Visit to Barsetshire: The Brandons

Posted December 26, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 4 Comments
A Visit to Barsetshire: The Brandons

Angela Thirkell, The Brandons (1939) After reading Anthony Trollope’s Barchester Towers, I was curious to read some of the novels that Angela Thirkell set in the same (imaginary) county of Barsetshire. Starting in 1933 and extending through World War II and into the 1950s, she chronicled the lives and loves of several interlinked circles of […]

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In the Kingdom of Ice (Nonfiction November Review)

Posted November 28, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 6 Comments
In the Kingdom of Ice (Nonfiction November Review)

Hampton Sides, In the Kingdom of Ice (2014) For my third and final Nonfiction November title (following One Summer: America 1927 and Empty Mansions), I thought it would be interesting to delve into American history once more. This time, upon recommendations by many including Books on the Table, I chose In the Kingdom of Ice, […]

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One Summer: America 1927 (Nonfiction November Review)

Posted November 14, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 21 Comments
One Summer: America 1927 (Nonfiction November Review)

Bill Bryson, One Summer: America 1927 (2013) A historical timeline entry for May-October, 1927 might read something like this: Floods devastate the Mississippi valley Charles Lindbergh makes first solo flight across the Atlantic Sacco and Vanzetti executed Calvin Coolidge declines to run for another term as president The Jazz Singer filmed Babe Ruth hits a […]

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A Traveller in Time: Hild

Posted October 17, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 7 Comments
A Traveller in Time: Hild

Nicola Griffith, Hild (2013)   Hild is not a novel for everyone. If you are put off by the thought of a dense, slow-moving narrative largely preoccupied with political machinations in a remote period of British history, populated by a large cast of characters whose every other name seems to begin with Os- or Aeth- […]

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My First Robertson Davies: Tempest-Tost

Posted October 10, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 6 Comments
My First Robertson Davies: Tempest-Tost

Robertson Davies, Tempest-Tost (1951) The first book you read by a favorite author has a special quality. Even if there are other books by the same author that you realize are more worthy of recognition, the joy of discovery lends your “first” a lingering glow. Sometimes, the particular circumstances of finding the book are stamped […]

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Lost in Translation: Le Grand Meaulnes

Posted October 3, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 6 Comments
Lost in Translation: Le Grand Meaulnes

Alain-Fournier, Le Grand Meaulnes (1913)   It’s been a while since I read a novel in translation. As I read Le Grand Meaulnes, one of the most acclaimed and popular novels that came out of the past century in France, I pondered the various aspects of the writer’s art, and how they can or cannot […]

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My First Diana Wynne Jones: Charmed Life

Posted September 26, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 8 Comments
My First Diana Wynne Jones: Charmed Life

Diana Wynne Jones, Charmed Life (Greenwillow, 1977) The first book you read by a favorite author has a special quality. Even if there are other books by the same author that you realize are more worthy of recognition, the joy of discovery lends your “first” a lingering glow. Sometimes, the particular circumstances of finding the […]

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Darkness in Delphi: My Brother Michael

Posted September 19, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 9 Comments
Darkness in Delphi: My Brother Michael

Mary Stewart, My Brother Michael (1960)   Mary Stewart is rightly acclaimed for creating wonderfully robust settings in her books, which serve as much more than mere stage backdrops to the action. So strong is the sense of place, sometimes, that the setting almost becomes a character or a plot device in its own right. […]

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Suspense with Style: Four by Mary Stewart

Posted September 15, 2014 by Lory in reviews / 14 Comments
Suspense with Style: Four by Mary Stewart

Mary Stewart, Nine Coaches Waiting (Morrow, 1959) Mary Stewart, The Ivy Tree (Morrow, 1962) Mary Stewart, The Moon-Spinners (Morrow, 1963) Mary Stewart, This Rough Magic (Morrow, 1964)    It’s always a great pleasure to discover an author whose books have somehow passed you by, especially if there are plenty of them. Such is the case […]

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