Monday, June 20, 2011

Another Week in Books

I'm not sure when I found time to read, in between the weeding and fighting the invasion of grass into flower-beds, but maybe I cheated--a few of these books were really short. Anyway, today, despite the weather forecast's promised sun, it's too wet and miserable to chase more weeds and I'm posting book reviews instead.

Non-Fiction.
The Grand Design, by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow: I got this as a Christmas present--how did it take so long to get around to reading it. But once I started I couldn't stop. Great illustrations (in pictures). Great illustrations in words. A fascinating ride through the wonders of modern science. And a book to be read with a 5-star intense cup of coffee.

Crime.
One Hot January, by J. Conrad Guest: The mix of Bogie, WWII and science fiction is irresistable; definitely an intriguing read, to be enjoyed with a 3-star balanced, full-flavored coffee.

After Lyletown, by K.C. Frederick: Relationships filled with good intentions, secrets and the ominous threat of exposure; 1960s folly intruding on a modern good lawyer's life; definitely a character-driven novel, with the sort of characters who become so real I imagine I've shared a 4-star complex coffee with them.

Bangkok 8, by John Burdett
: Surreal police procedural set in Thailand with lots of corruption, steamy streets, red-light districts, Buddhist musings, drugs and alcohol, all combining to form something really fascinating, very logical and precise, and a great read. Read it with a 5-star bold, dark, intense coffee.

Crossing the Line, by Stephen Jay Schwartz: A short story introducing the author's character, Hayden Glass, a young cop, eager to advance and about to fall into his city's seamy temptation. Drink in the words with a 5-star bold intense (and short) cup of coffee.

More Short stories
Here Comes Charlie, by RW Holmen: A beautifully written, scarily real vignette of young men in the Vietnam War. Drink a short sharp 1-star coffee and enjoy an enthrallingly haunting tale.

The Second Fly-Caster, by Randy Kadish: This story leads to Vietnam too, via a young man's relationship to his Dad, and his Dad's relationship to fly-fishing. Beautifully told--enjoy with a 2-star relaxing coffee.

Women's Fiction.
The Daughter’s Walk, by Jane Kirkpatrick: I always enjoy Jane Kirkpatrick's books. I love the way she can take a real life and turn it into beautifully plotted fiction. I love the way she brings the Pacific Northwest to life. And I love her characters, real women with real problems, real lives, and real lessons to learn. Drink a 3-star well-balanced coffee with this beautifully balanced tale.

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