Less a diatribe against America than a sorrowful analysis of the ofen-imperialistic actions motivated by greed, political expediency, or willful ignorance, this book chronicles missteps from the genocide of the continent's original inhabitants to the export of toxic rap. The author winds up the book with "Ten Things America Has Done Right". Interesting, but would have been improved by a good copy editing.
Quick read with some very funny lines as Mel Brooks brings his 2000-year-old man character to the printed page. The bacover reviews over-hype it, but I guess that's what you get when you're Mel Brooks.
Fun chick-lit about a young woman who thinks she's lost everything when her snakey boyfriend hijacks her ideas and then dumps her, but finds she has a lot more going for her -- like good friends, loving family, and boobs that are just exactly the right size. (I'd have rated this one higher if either the author or her copy editor understood when to use "me" and when to use "I".)
Couldn't get through it. Kind of a New Wave, non-linear story (?) set in a dystopian 21st Century New York City, full of characters who seem to have no relationship to each other. Some nice turns of phrase, but the payoff didn't seem to be worth the effort.
Rather than looking at the American Constitution as a remarkable step forward in the human notion of governance, Skousen's "Principles of Freedom 101" wanders deeply into Judeo-Christian theology. Just not what I was looking for.
On an ice-shrouded New Year's Eve, a minor car accident becomes a nightmare when the mutilated body of a young woman is ejected from the trunk of one of the cars. Unravelling who she was and what happened to her drives this thriller. Hoag continues to play her extremely skillful bait-and-switch game with readers, but this one feels a bit padded and drags somewhat in the latter half.
This odd little book raises a lot more questions than it answers, and doesn't end so much as just dribble off the playing field. The set-up -- a high school sex ed teacher who gets in trouble with the growing fundamentalist Christian population of her school district -- poses some questions but never really answers them. And the plot complication of her attraction to one of those fundamentalists -- a man who is fighting demons of his own -- never really gets its due.
Were many of the hysteria attacks of the Salem withcraft era brought on by ergotamine fungus on the rye flour used in some breads? And if so, could modern medical research develop useful psychotropic drugs from the same source? Cook uses this idea and sets it all against the background of a contemporary descendant of one of the executed women, who is searching for the mysterious hidden "evidence" used against her ancestress. Great ideas all, but just not well handled.
Lightweight collection of essays, observations, and sound-bites from the alter-ego of an over-40 free spirit, drifting from academic job to academic job, from love to lover, and from country to country. Amusing.
Guess what? Mary Tyler Moore is ... boring. At least her poor-little-me-my-daddy-didn't-love-me bio is. The lively "inside" stories (funny an otherwise) one generally expects from celebrity tell-alls (or tell-somes) are conspicuously absent here.
Interesting study of several women living on a small island off the coast of Vancouver, B.C., each of whom is alone for different reasons and dealing with the problems of making human connections without sacrificing some essential part of herself.
Crusie and Mayer get it together this time, in a slow-starting story about a cranky food columnist with a penchant for bopping people with frying pans, a flamingo-studded wedding, and a psycho bitch grandmother-of-the-bride who may or may not be sitting on five million dollars in cash.
Compelling and fast-moving tale of the aftermath of a fictional in-flight incident that left passengers dead and injured. Crichton tackles corporate infighting and infotainment "news" for the zing and supports it with the nuts and bolts description of the internal investigation by the plane's manufacturer.
Sandra Dallas' talent lies in finding beauty, strength, and compassion in the small, simple moments of women's lives. She has done it again in this Civil-War-era novel, once again using the theme of quilting to highlight her characters' lives. Even as Alice uses patience and skill to make otherwise useless bits and pieces of fabric into expressions of love that are both beautiful and practical, so does the story piece together bits and pieces to create a skillfully wrought portrait of the characters' lives and time.
The cover blurb says this is a novel about love that crosses over into obsession. I'll have to take their word for it, because I couldn't get through it. The Dickensian style and the incredibly unlikeable narrator made it just too dreary to be worth the effort.
Bragg's memoir covers much the same kind of territory Frank McCourt explored in "Angela's Ashes" -- a grim childhood marked by a drunken, often-absent father and a mother who struggled as best she could to make a life for her children, this one set in Alabama rather than Ireland. Like McCourt, Bragg writes so beautifully that the reader is able to get past the worst of the ugliness.