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A woman novelist living on an unnamed island off an unnamed country notices things are gradually disappearing. Not just small items like hair clips or ribbon, but birds and butterflies. Most people have no memory of them. The Memory Police keep track of those who remember the existence of the things that have disappeared. The woman worries that her novels and her editor will be gone, so she builds a room under her floor for him. She continues with small rebellions and even has a birthday party for a neighbor. Ogawa's beautiful sparse prose enhances the chilling terror of this dark tale of life in a total police state. ~ Reviewed by Sarah Knight
A fascinating book about tiny things such as an ice cream sundae, Chanel handbags, a tiny Windsor chair and, best of all, tiny cell phones. Almost any object you can think of may be rendered as a tiny object in this book. The book is organized into sections which include Itty-Bitty Flora, Diminutive Wildlife, and Wee Objects. Wonderful photographs, interviews with other collectors and even a tiny book also contribute to giant-sized pleasure. ~ Reviewed by Sarah Knight
Stella Fortuna's brushes with death began in a poor mountain town in Calabria where she was born in 1920. She was named for a sister who had died in childhood. Her father had left for America to make his fortune and returned home only occasionally. A sibling arrived nine months after one of his visits. Stella was a smart, beautiful, standoffish girl who fiercely protected her younger, slower sister. She never wanted to marry after witnessing her father's brutality. When Stella was nineteen, her father decided to take the family to America where he expected her to fulfill the traditional role of women at that time. Her brushes with death continued. Grames writes beautifully and her descriptions of life and her portrayals of people in a large extended Italian family in America at that period are fascinating. A wonderful story told with gusto and love that doesn't sugarcoat the lives of either women or men. ~ Reviewed by Sarah Knight
A wonderful tribute to the Maira Kalman's mother whose closet is now a traveling art exhibit. Poignant, funny, delightful with Maira's wonderful drawings and Alex's photos. If you liked Nick Bantock's Griffin & Sabine this is a book for you. ~ Reviewed by Sarah Knight
A young man disappears after a hockey game with friends on a local pond. Police suspect fowl play while his friends, including an older man he has a secret relationship with, have other ideas. Beautifully written with interesting characters, most of whom are provocatively suspect. Set in Vermont. ~ Reviewed by Sarah Knight