Archive for July, 2009


Headquarters has decided to shut down the Red Lobster restaurant in a small mall in New Britain, Connecticut. We spend its last twelve hours in it with the restaurant manager, a Latino man named Manny DeLeon, as he struggles to keep his ship afloat just one more time, in the face of an impending New England snowstorm and an unmotivated crew.

July 25, 2009 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Contemporary, Drift-of-Life, Literary, NE & New York

NOT IN THE FLESH by Ruth Rendell

Ruth Rendell’s NOT IN THE FLESH deals with buried skeletons, both the physical and the metaphorical kind. Chief Inspector Reginald Wexford and his Detective Sergeant, Hannah Goldsmith, report to Old Grimble’s Field in Flagford when an elderly man and his dog come upon an old set of remains.

July 25, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Sleuths Series, United Kingdom, y Award Winning Author


It is Wednesday, April 18, 1906, 5:12 A.M. Sergeant Randall Blackburn makes his way back to the City Hall Station after a long night’s beat patrolling San Francisco’s seamy waterfront district, the “Barbary Coast.” He is dissatisfied with his job and his life. Blackburn is permanently assigned to the dangerous district, a strip of “bottom-feeder saloons and dead-end flophouses.”

July 24, 2009 · Judi Clark · 2 Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: California, Facing History, Mystery/Suspense, Reading Guide

VANILLA RIDE by Joe R. Lansdale

If you like novels that are riveting, wildly profane and yet strangely profound, then welcome to VANILLA RIDE, the latest novel in the Hap & Leonard series from author Joe Lansdale, and if you haven’t read one of his novels yet, then what are you waiting for?

July 23, 2009 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Humorous, Noir, Sleuths Series, Texas, Wild West, y Award Winning Author


Ru Freeman’s remarkable debut novel, set in Sri Lanka and told in the context of civil unrest, unfolds like a hard candy being unwrapped in the theater, twist by crinkling twist, until finally, after suspenseful moments, the sweet interior is finally free.

July 21, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: 2009 Favorites, Class - Race - Gender, Debut Novel, Literary, Reading Guide, Sri Lanka, World Lit

SHADOW COUNTRY by Peter Matthiessen

I’ve been concerned about reviewing SHADOW COUNTRY from the get go. For starters, it is big at eight hundred and ninety-two pages. And there is the subject matter: Nothing less than a reckoning of the “last American frontier,” the turn of the century coast of southwest Florida, the Ten Thousand Islands, as reflected through the experience of a single, highly complex, enigmatic figure, Edgar J. Watson.

July 20, 2009 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, Florida, National Book Award Winner, Wild West, y Award Winning Author