Written in 1990, The Things They Carried continues to be the classic Vietnam work. Not only did soldiers carry personal items weighing between 15 andWritten in 1990, The Things They Carried continues to be the classic Vietnam work. Not only did soldiers carry personal items weighing between 15 and 20 lbs. such as salt tablets, matches, sewing kits, mosquito repellent, they carried 5 lbs. steel helmets, 6.7 lb. flak jackets, 2lb. quilted lined ponchos. Each man then carried items specific to his needs; diary, dope, Bible, foot powder, condoms. And they carried love letters, memories of home and their experiences in Nam. Going back home, they carried images of war. Tim O'Brien weaves the stories of past, present and sometimes death of a few men in a platoon with such detail and yet it reads smoothly. Fortunately it's written in story form, so you can take a break between stories to truly process....more
Viewing Ernest Hemingway through the eyes of his first wife and was fascinating, frustrating , appalling, exciting and depressing. Later in life he saViewing Ernest Hemingway through the eyes of his first wife and was fascinating, frustrating , appalling, exciting and depressing. Later in life he said Hadley was his true love and he would rather have died than fallen in love with anyone but her. They met in Chicago partying hard, loving hard and adventuring hard. She went from a shy 28 year old living upstairs in her married sister's house to following Ernest to Paris scratching out a living on his writing. Through them we picnic with Gertrude Stein and her wife, attend the Pamplona bullfights, ski the Alps, winter in Austria and tan at the beach with Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. The reader knows what is coming and yet it is hard to see the inclusion of another woman and the very modern arrangement. Historical fiction, but very well researched. Wonderful point of view. Reads easily and quickly....more
As I read this, I had visions of Downton Abbey! I could actually put some of the faces to the characters. The time and place settings are the same, soAs I read this, I had visions of Downton Abbey! I could actually put some of the faces to the characters. The time and place settings are the same, so of course there are many similarities: WWI coming, soldiers returning home with shell shock, customs of the downstairs and upstairs people, women feeling they want more in their day than tea and changing clothes,etc.
I enjoyed this almost as much as Morton's Forgotten Garden. A great deal of foreshadowing, but the twist when the mystery is solved is interesting. Morton flips between present time and the past through the memories of a lady's maid and this technique becomes irritating when the reader is flipped to the present for no good reason, except to stall revelations within the mystery.
A medieval CSI historical novel with a female main character! Adelia trained in Salerno, Italy, to be a doctor and more specifically a forensic doctorA medieval CSI historical novel with a female main character! Adelia trained in Salerno, Italy, to be a doctor and more specifically a forensic doctor thanks to liberal adoptive parents. Salerno was the only place in Europe where doctors could be trained in science without persecution of the Church.
In Cambridge, England, children are being brutally murdered. The Kig of Sicily is asked to send a "doctor of death" to England to investigate. Adelia is the best and speaks English.
Once in the town of Cambridge she finds that the Jewish population is being blamed for the deaths of the children. All the Jews are held prisoner in the castle in order to keep them safe from the town's angry mobs.
Since Adelia must investigate while not letting it be known that she is a doctor, her Muslim male traveling companion acts as the doctor. Adelia fights against female stereotype, religious prejudice and ignorance to discover the truth of what is happening.
Definitely a page turner. I am going to find Ariana Franklin's next book!
Caveat - not for the faint hearted. There are graphically violent scenes. ...more