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All the superlatives apply to this wondrous novel - mesmerizing, enthralling, hypnotic and elegant.
One can feel the fog and the lurking shadows of post war London where siblings Stitch and Wren are abruptly left in the care of men who might be mobsters. The Moth,The Darter, and the entire cast are never quite what they seem. Whether cruising down the Thames in a mussel boat, or understanding the importance of stegophilists for espionage, readers will be captivated by every twist and turn. I give this a standing ovation for every single element - and especially for Ondaatje's clever reference to the state of "Schwer". His writing here is utter perfection. ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker
This is the story of Yellowstone's most famous Wolf , number 832AF, or more affectionately known as "06" for the year she was born. Observed, tracked and photographed by novices and biologists alike, 06 was internationally revered for her majestic stature, merciful leadership, tender parenting and fierce hunting skill. Her legendary reign as the granddaughter of one of the first Canadian wolves brought to repopulate the park in 1995 is both fascinating and magical. Yet American Wolf is a much larger and critical story. It illuminates the inherent tensions of contemporary life in the American West and begs a number of important questions. What do we value? What are we willing to sacrifice to preserve our precious wild places? ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker
My Absolute Darling is a family war story with one hell of a courageous heroine at its vortex. Turtle Alveston is unforgettable. Reading this novel will keep your shattered heart pounding through every last page - and you will be obsessed with getting there, though not so quickly as to miss any detail provided by this enormously talented author. ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker
Zeitlin's collection is part memoir, part documentary and part personal essay. His most recent book explores a cross section of his experience as a professional folklorist - examining and documenting the meaning and power of human expression in all of its varied forms. Here he challenges and inspires us to celebrate the ordinary as the extraordinary, how our daily work, play, music, food, art, and family traditions matter. How these precious ingredients, if we allow them, if we are mindful and aware of their importance to us and to our time, can be the inspiration that allows us to engage in a more creative life. ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker
An intense unsettling ride into the heat, dust, dirty back roads and truck stops of a southern rural town where murder and violence erupt following the coincidental return of two former residents. Secrets, revenge, passion and old mistakes haunt the characters in Desperation Road who can't see beyond the next few hours in a day but are just too stubborn to quit. This is a great big novel that you'll finish in one night because you just have to know what lies around the next curve and you'll desperately hope with each turn of the page that mercy and justice will make everything alright, or at least mostly. If you've enjoyed Ron Rash, Daniel Woodrow, David Joy, or Tom Franklin's novels, put this on your must read list. ~ Reviewed by Nancy Scheemaker