shynds's blog

Good Things Happen Slowly: A Life in and Out of Jazz by Fred Hersch - Book Review

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Good Things Happen Slowly: A Life In and Out of Jazz Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781101904343
Availability: Click Title for IN STOCK Location
Published: Crown Archetype - September 12th, 2017

Fred Hersch is one of the greatest jazz pianists of his generation. This is his story--from upper middle-class Midwestern beginnings to wild times in New York City where he ultimately forged his illustrious career. Hersch is the first openly gay, HIV positive jazz man. In the overtly masculine world of be-bop and straight-ahead jazz, his was a difficult road in coming to terms with who he was and dealing with serious health concerns. Readers and listeners of jazz will appreciate this candid and musical memoir. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


Montpelier Parade by Karl Geary - Book Review

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Montpelier Parade Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781936787555
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Catapult - August 22nd, 2017

Geary's first novel is brave and deeply affecting. Brave because he tells the story in the second person. (You have to get used to it but you do.) Affecting because of the superbly crafted characters. In 1980's Dublin, Sonny, an aimless, working-class teen falls for Vera, a posh, older English woman. Sonny's life at school and at home is little more than a sad pattern to be endured. Vera represents beauty and worldliness although she is utterly unknowable to him. Their slowly developing relationship is ultimately touching, heartbreaking and doomed. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


All We Shall Know by Donal Ryan - Book Review

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All We Shall Know: A Novel Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780143131045
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Penguin Books - July 4th, 2017

This may be the best book I read in 2017. Melody Shee's husband is not the father of the child she carries. An outcast in her Irish town, haunted by the death of a childhood friend, she befriends a nineteen year old Traveller (gypsy) woman named Mary Crothery. It's a fascinating relationship. Ryan's prose begs to be read aloud. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


Shadow of the Lions by Christopher Swann - Book Review

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Shadow of the Lions: A Novel Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781616205003
Availability: Special Order
Published: Algonquin Books - August 1st, 2017

I got so much more than I expected from this smart, intricately plotted first novel. At first it's an engaging work of boarding school relationship politics. It becomes a mesmerizing thriller full of rewarding surprises. Very well-done and easy to recommend to readers of all stripes. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


The Standard Grand by Jay Baron Nicorvo - Book Review

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The Standard Grand: A Novel Cover Image
$34.99
ISBN: 9781250108944
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: St. Martin's Press - April 25th, 2017

Both sprawling and intimate, this debut novel is unlike any other 21st century war novel I have read. With an AWOL female soldier at its center and a dilapidated Catskills resort as its setting, The Standard Grand is constantly surprising and told in fresh and vivid prose. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


Salt Houses by Hala Alyan - Book Review

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Salt Houses Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780544912588
Availability: Hard to Find - May no longer be available
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - May 2nd, 2017

A powerful and moving novel about several generations of a Palestinian family whose lives are repeatedly uprooted and disrupted by war. All the while they confront the common problems and rites of passage for families in any culture--conflict between parents and teenagers, the discovery or rejection of religion, caring for aging parents. A masterful debut from a major talent. ~ Reviewed by Stan Hynds


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