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Dena C. - Reviews

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All the King's Men (Harvest Book)
All the King's Men (Harvest Book)
Author: Robert Penn Warren
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 51
Review Date: 4/6/2010
Helpful Score: 4


One of the most brilliant American novels ever written---a must read if you're interested in politics, the South, racism, the populist movement, or the relationship between Christianity and guilt. This amazing book is a thinly veiled biography of Governor Huey Long of Louisiana, but it is so much more in its broad, encompassing themes. It will make you ask yourself, "What is true morality? What is right action?" If you weren't forced to read it in high school, you should have been. This would be Ideal for a book club with a lively membership. Finally, let me add this: the prose absolutely sings---vivid characterizations and passages that make me weep with their evocation of human emotions. If you only saw the movie, and haven't read the book, you were robbed.


A Breath of Scandal (Sin, Bk 2)
A Breath of Scandal (Sin, Bk 2)
Author: Connie Mason
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 48
Review Date: 7/12/2008


She was an out-of-wedlock earl's daughter enjoying her last summer as a gypsy before having to claim her heritage. He was an earl, but also a secret agent in disguise, washed up on shore after the bad guys tried to kill him. She nursed him back to health. Intrigue, adventure and lots of hot nasty sex ensued.


Bride of Pendorric
Bride of Pendorric
Author: Victoria Holt
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 3/4/2010


One of Holt's early books, this is a fast moving romantic thriller. Young Favel Farrington lives happily with her artist father in Italy until she is swept off her feet by the dashing British heir to Pendorric. Upon returning to England and meeting the family, Favel starts having unpleasant surprises. Is someone trying to kill her? Is that someone her husband? Questions are answered in a shocking climax.


Candle in the Window (My First, Bk 1)
Candle in the Window (My First, Bk 1)
Author: Christina Dodd
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 178
Review Date: 7/12/2008
Helpful Score: 1


One of the more unusual medieval romances, in that the heroine is BLIND, and no, she doesn't miraculously recover her sight. Dodd is a good writer and this is a heartwarming tale.


The Celestine Prophecy
The Celestine Prophecy
Author: James Redfield
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 136
Review Date: 7/12/2008
Helpful Score: 1


A lot of people said they got deep insights from this book. Some of them were people I knew who were quite nice people. Unfortunately I was not one of those people who got something from this book. Except perhaps an urge to develop my own version of "I found the secret to the universe and I'll tell you if you buy this book."


The Champion (Knights of the Black Rose, Bk 1) (Harlequin Historicals, No 491)
Review Date: 7/12/2008


First in a trilogy about a group of knights returning home from the Crusades, where they formed bonds of friendship with each other---good adventure and sweet romance.
2nd is The Rogue and 3rd is The Conqueror


The Conqueror
The Conqueror
Author: Brenda Joyce
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 3
Review Date: 7/12/2008


This is a classic of old style historical romance, back before we all got educated that "no" means "no." Lots of dominance and submission histrionics. Wonderfully cheesy and over-the top. Conquering hero has to wed one of two Saxon sisters. Mistaken identity--oops---"the one I really really want I can't have so I gotta marry the ugly one." Complications ensue. Lusty hero and heroine safely wed by end.


Courting Midnight (Berkley Sensation)
Courting Midnight (Berkley Sensation)
Author: Emma Holly
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 195
Review Date: 5/1/2010
Helpful Score: 2


Hmmmm-set in Regency England, so it's a historical romance, but with vampires (or upyrs, a very imaginative reframing on Holly's part) who can shape shift into wolves. I bought this only to post it onto my pbs bookshelf, because I know there are a lot of fans of paranormal romance out there, but of course I read it first, and I enjoyed it. Well written, with a dry wit and 3 dimensional characters, but a little "too much information" for me in some of the sex scenes, this turned out to be a very pleasant surprise. Emma Holly has quite an imagination and can employ the right words to make you see her mental creation. You go, girl!


Dangerous Gifts
Dangerous Gifts
Author: Haywood Smith
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
 13
Review Date: 7/12/2008


Not marketed as such, but could be termed a Christian medieval romance. Heartwarming story.


Flight of the Buffalo: Soaring to Excellence, Learning to Let Employees Lead
Review Date: 7/25/2007
Helpful Score: 1


Great book primarily for those in the corporate world, but even has some threads of usefulness for the small business owner and the self employed.


From Death to Morning: Short Stories
From Death to Morning: Short Stories
Author: Thomas Wolfe
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 4/6/2010


Not as magnificent as "Look Homeward, Angel" but still a powerful and poetic collection of short stories by Thomas Wolfe with locations set in his home state of North Carolina and his adopted home of New York City.


The Gift (Crown's Spies, Bk 3)
The Gift (Crown's Spies, Bk 3)
Author: Julie Garwood
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 409
Review Date: 3/14/2008
Helpful Score: 3


Garwood's heroines are often klutzy, ditsy gals, and it can get tiresome, but once this heroine, Sara, gets kidnapped aboard her sweetie's pirate ship, comic mishaps come thick and fast. It was laugh-out-loud funny!
Truly an enjoyable read.


Gospel Parallels: A Synopsis of the First Three Gospels
Review Date: 1/9/2011


Fascinating to see the development of remembered sayings put into somewhat of a narrative form, and to see which pieces were chosen or added to the story. For believers and those solely interested in literary criticism too.


Heart of the Flame (Dragon Chalice, Bk 2)
Heart of the Flame (Dragon Chalice, Bk 2)
Author: Tina St. John
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 11
Review Date: 7/12/2008


Good medieval romance---lots of action and memorable characters. Too much "magic" for me, but if you don't mind shapeshifters, could be an ideal escapist read for you!


How Far She Went: Stories
How Far She Went: Stories
Author: Mary Hood
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 7/21/2007
Helpful Score: 1


This is a stark and sensuous little book, reminiscient of Caldwell's "Tobacco Road" but with none of that book's nastiness and cynicism. Rather, it has a pathos born of a woman's insight and sensitivity. Mary Hood won the Flannery O'Connor Award.


The Immense Journey : An Imaginative Naturalist Explores the Mysteries of Man and Nature
Review Date: 7/25/2007


"There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."---Albert Einstein

This is a book for those who think, without recourse to standardized religions, that everything is a miracle.


Man's Search For Meaning
Man's Search For Meaning
Author: Victor Frankl
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 7/16/2007


One of the great philosophical treatises of the 20th century, written by a concentration camp survivor whose family was wiped out during World War 11, the book has brought insight to many who question the value of human existence. Frankl never lost his faith in the idea that human life has purpose and meaning.


Master at Arms
Master at Arms
Author: Rafael Sabatini
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 7/12/2008


This is swashbuckling fiction by a master of the genre. Courage and wit carry the day, and the fair maiden.


Minx (Splendid, Bk 3)
Minx (Splendid, Bk 3)
Author: Julia Quinn
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
 372
Review Date: 7/25/2009


This is a sweet historical romance set in England in 1816. The plot is: unsophisticated tomboy tames worldly rake. There was a bit of a Big Misunderstanding device thrown in near the end, just for dramatic tension, but it was soon resolved. Enjoyable read!


Moll Flanders
Moll Flanders
Author: Daniel Defoe
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 1.5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 4/6/2010
Helpful Score: 1


This book was written in 1722 and was incredibly daring for its time. Many people still find it risque. It is now regarded as an early feminist work, since it openly discusses gender inequities and the problems of prostitution and abortion: matters which absolutely could not be talked about in the 18th century. In the 18th century, it was not possible for a lady to get a husband without being in possession of landed property or other forms of property. Women were responsible for the payment of their dowry. For this reason, Moll needs to have cash, bonds or landed property in order to get married. Since she is not rich, she pretends to men that she has money so that she can seduce them. She has bad experiences with men and does prison time, leading a hard life, but she never succumbs to bitterness, and the novel even ends on a very happy note. If you missed it in English class (and if you were home schooled, you probably did) you should read it now, especially with the excellent forward by professor James Sutherland.


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