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Eye of the Red Tsar (Inspector Pekkala, #1)
Sam Eastland's first (as far as I can tell) novel offers an intriguing setting: the Soviet Union in 1929. HIstorical novels of Russia abound, but most ...more
Mar 2010
Mar 22, 2010
Into the Blue
This lengthy mystery/thriller takes a long time to get going (about 150 pages in the mass-market paperback), but once it does, it's almost as riveting ...more
Aug 25, 2010
Aug 26, 2010
American Brutus: John Wilkes Booth and the Lincoln Conspiracies
This book is not, as I expected, a biography of John Wilkes Booth, but a thorough account of the Lincoln assassination with an extensive backstory on ...more
Jan 29, 2012
Jan 31, 2012
Death at the Chateau Bremont (A Verlaque and Bonnet Mystery, #1)
I bought this book mainly for its setting, Aix-en-Provence. I wanted to see what ordinary life is like for the Aixois. In that respect, the book gave ...more
Apr 07, 2014
Apr 08, 2014
Mrs. Drew Plays Her Hand
Carla Kelly is the master of cozy Regency romance. Her books have less to do with action than with characters and the way they interact. She's especia ...more
Jan 24, 2014
Jan 25, 2014
Long Time Coming
Another solid suspense tale from Robert Goddard. Like many of his books, this one centers on a crime that happened in the past. The book opens in 1976 ...more
Jul 05, 2013
Aug 29, 2013
The Sweet Dove Died
It's odd--the previous Pym I read in my chronological reread is a book (An Unsuitable Attachment) that I remembered liking much more than I did this t ...more
May 15, 2014
May 14, 2014
Colonel Roosevelt
If this is the least interesting of Edmund Morris's three books on Roosevelt, it is because the story it tells is a sad one. After he left the preside ...more
not set
Aug 09, 2013
A Glass of Blessings
Terrific novel, her best since Excellent Women (looked at chronologically). I admire the discipline at work here: not a single character who is an Oxf ...more
Apr 25, 2014
Apr 25, 2014
Rules of Civility
Terrific first novel set in New York in 1938. The narrator begins her story in 1966, when she sees two photos of a man called Tinker Grey in an exhibi ...more
Jun 26, 2014
Jun 21, 2014
Juliet, Naked
This is Hornby's best novel yet (although I haven't read Slam). It deals with many of his known concerns (rock music, the nature of fandom, the seriou ...more
Dec 19, 2014
Dec 14, 2014
Dragon Bones (Red Princess, #3)
I loved Lisa See's Snow Flower and the Secret Fan and Shanghai Girls, and liked Dreams of Joy, so I was delighted to find that she also wrote detectiv ...more
Nov 02, 2014
Oct 28, 2014
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)
I have to give this four stars because a substantial portion of the book--roughly, the first half--is boring. You can't get Rowling off by saying that ...more
Nov 23, 2014
Nov 17, 2014
A Scandalous Countess (Malloren, #12)
I was surprised to see that so many other readers disliked the heroine. I liked her very much. Yes, she likes a frivolous life, but she's very young ( ...more
Nov 10, 2014
Nov 02, 2014
Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition
This is as delightful a history book as you're likely to read. Okrent not only provides a more detailed and thought-provoking history of the rise and ...more
Oct 16, 2013
Oct 06, 2013
Michael and Natasha: The Life and Love of Michael II, the Last of the Romanov Tsars
Interesting and enjoyable story of Michael, the younger brother of the last Russian tsar, and Natasha, a beautiful Russian woman who, because she was ...more
May 08, 2012
Apr 29, 2012
The Shakespeare Riots: Revenge, Drama, and Death in Nineteenth-Century America
Ostensibly about the 1849 riots in New York between fans of two star actors, one American and one British, the book is actually much broader in scope. ...more
Aug 31, 2012
Aug 31, 2012
The President and the Assassin: McKinley, Terror, and Empire at the Dawn of the American Century
This book's title is less fitting than its subtitle (or part of it): "Terror and Empire at the Dawn of the American Century" is a much better descript ...more
Jul 25, 2012
Jul 12, 2012
Dazzler: The Life And Times Of Moss Hart
I really give this 3.5 stars. It's a solid biography that, considering its subject and his milieu, ought to have been livelier. Bach is scrupulous in ...more
Dec 13, 2014
Nov 24, 2014
Agatha Raisin and the Witch of Wyckhadden (Agatha Raisin, #9)
Anyone thinking that this is a nice cozy English village type of mystery should back off quickly. Agatha Raisin is grumpy without being the least bit ...more
Aug 07, 2014
Aug 08, 2014
Saving Fish from Drowning
This book is a big departure from Amy Tan's usual type of fiction, which readers should know up front. It is not about Chinese-Americans, or mothers a ...more
Sep 2013
Aug 09, 2013
The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires
Everyone should read this book! Wu argues that every breakthrough communications technology of the 20th century--telephone, films, AM radio, FM radio, ...more
Oct 22, 2012
Oct 11, 2012
The Secret Wedding (Malloren, #9)
One of the better books in the Malloren series. I really appreciate Beverley's attempt to do something different in each book, instead of just recycle ...more
Oct 16, 2013
Oct 17, 2013
Stormy Weather
This was my first Carl Hiaasen book,and if it is typical of his others, I plan to read them all. Hiaasen is usually considered a crime/mystery/thrille ...more
May 26, 2012
Apr 29, 2012
Lord John And The Hand Of Devils (Lord John Grey, #0.5, #1.5, #2.5)
Two stories and a novella. The stories are humdrum but the novella is good, once it finally gets going (which takes a while). Not nearly as good as th ...more
Dec 07, 2013
Dec 01, 2013
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
I wanted to like this book, but after 200 pages, I gave up on it. I like the way Clarke writes, and admire the enormous amount of historical research ...more
not set
Mar 29, 2014
Murder on the Ballarat Train
I had heard so much about how delightful these books were that I was eager to get started. In the end, I found it charming as a light "period read" bu ...more
Jan 10, 2014
Jan 22, 2014
The Valley of Amazement
This was a difficult book to read--I had to put it down a lot because I couldn't take any more of what was going on--but I persevered, and I'm glad I ...more
Jan 23, 2015
Sep 01, 2013
An entertaining half-fact, half-fiction account of the Watergate scandal from the inside (the people who were involved). We don't see the burglary and ...more
Feb 09, 2013
Jan 04, 2013
Twentieth Century Interpretations Of Wuthering Heights: A Collection Of Critical Essays (20th Century Interpretations)
Having recently listened to a recording of Wuthering Heights (the outstanding one by Janet McTeer), I was eager to read some criticism. My county libr ...more
Jun 30, 2012
Jun 23, 2012
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