Archive for May, 2009

WONDERFUL WORLD by Javier Calvo

Filled with the fragmentation, incoherence and ambiguity that typify much of post-modernist thought, WONDERFUL WORLD is a challenge for the reader, since the very characteristics which make it “post-modern” are also characteristics which are off-putting for readers who expect a novel to have a clear beginning, middle, and end. And when that novel is almost five hundred pages long, the challenges are even more daunting, since it is difficult to know how much of the incoherence and fragmentation is deliberate and how much may be the result of less than rigorous editing.

May 31, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Debut Novel, Spain, World Lit

SILENT ON THE MOOR by Deanna Raybourn

Deanna Raybourn’s SILENT OF THE MOOR, the third installment in her series featuring Lady Julia Grey, opens in London in 1888. Thirty-year old Julia is about to embark on a journey to visit the mysterious and mercurial inquiry agent, Nicholas Brisbane. The bad-tempered but very attractive Brisbane, who has gypsy blood and a mysterious past, pulls Julia towards him with one hand and drives her away with the other. What follows is a Gothic tale of long buried secrets, forbidden passion, and murder.

May 30, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Facing History, Sleuths Series, United Kingdom

WWW : WAKE by Robert J. Sawyer

In this first book of Robert J. Sawyer’s WWW series, Caitlan Decter is a teenage math whiz who’s getting used to her family’s new digs in Canada. They moved from Texas where she attended a school for the blind. Now she’s entering a public school as a sophomore. But she’s not worried, because she’s “made of awesome.” With the help of cutting-edge technology, Caitlan spends a lot of time on the internet where her disability is unnoticed—until she gets an email from a Japanese researcher offering a new advancement that could restore her sight.

May 29, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Hugo Award, Speculative (Beyond Reality)

GENESIS by Bernard Beckett

Anaximander (Anax), a young female historian, is the main character and narrator of Bernard Beckett’s novella, GENESIS. She has been called before a panel of Examiners at The Academy. She expects to defend her interpretation of the life of Adam Forde, 2058-2077, as a precursor to being asked to join this prestigious group that governs her civilization. Adam was a nonconformist in the twenty-first century Plato Republic. Adam, assigned as a Soldier guarding the Great Sea Fence, committed a treasonous act and instead of drawing the normal death penalty was imprisoned to serve as a “companion” to an android named Art.

May 28, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Reading Guide, Speculative (Beyond Reality)

TEA TIME FOR THE TRADITIONALLY BUILT by Alexander McCall Smith

Not a believer that change is entirely for the better in Botswana society, Mma Precious Ramotswe, the “traditionally built” owner of the No.1 Ladies Detective Agency in Gaborone, has decided that cars are among the biggest agents of change, making people lazy. She has therefore decided to walk the two miles each way to her office, located beside the garage where her husband Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni operates a car repair service. She secretly admits, however, that the real reason she is walking is that her beloved little white van, now twenty-two years old, is making strange noises, and she fears that when Mr. J. L. B. Matekoni hears them that he will decide her little van can no longer be repaired.

May 27, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Africa, Sleuths Series, World Lit

SHANGHAI GIRLS by Lisa See

Shanghai China in 1937 is known as the “Paris of the East.” It is a thoroughly modern, international city, with a large foreign community. There is also a heavily populated Little Tokyo section, where Japanese residents promote “Friendship, Cooperation and Co-prosperity between China and Japan.”

May 26, 2009 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: China, Facing History, World Lit