Archive for September, 2009
With THE CONFESSIONS OF EDWARD DAY, the Orange Prize award winning author Valerie Martin has created an engrossing fictional memoir. The title character guides the reader through his adventures as he strives for professional success on the stage in New York, while also fighting his personal demons.
September 30, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: 1970s, Competitiveness, Job-centered, Theater, Valerie Martin Â· Posted in: Contemporary, Facing History, Reading Guide, US Mid-Atlantic, y Award Winning Author
At its heart, ATLAS OF UNKNOWNS is a story about family, especially the relationship between two sisters. Linno and her younger sister, Anju, grew up with their father and grandmother in Kerala, India. Their motherâ€™s apparent suicide is alluded to but not discussed although her death haunts both girls in different ways. At age 13, Linno, a budding artist, loses her hand in an accident with a firecracker.
In Anita Shreve’s A CHANGE IN ALTITUDE, twenty-eight year old Patrick and Margaret McCoglan have been together for two years and married for five months. In the late 1970’s, they are expatriate Americans living in Nairobi, Kenya, where Patrick, a physician, is completing a fellowship on equatorial medicine and treating patients at free clinics around the country. Although Margaret was a photojournalist in her native Massachusetts, she does not currently have a job and she misses the stimulation and excitement of her profession. One day, Patrick announces that he would like Margaret to accompany him, their landlord, Arthur, and his wife, Diana, on a climb to the summit of Mount Kenya
Michelle Hunevenâ€™s new novel, BLAME, has one of the best prologues to come along in a long time. Here, we are introduced to Joey Hawthorne, a preteen struggling with the impending death of her mother to breast cancer. One day tall, handsome uncle Brice shows up to pick her up from summer typing lessons and she immediately suspects something is wrongâ€”her mother will die shortly thereafter. Through Brice, Joey is introduced to his temperamental girlfriend, Patsy MacLemoore.
DISTURBANCES IN THE FIELD is a deep novel and book of philosophy in one. It opens up very slowly, developing characterization and heading very slowly towards a tragedy. What, you might ask, is a disturbance in the field?
In 2003 following the invasion of Iraq, Couto–understanding the first hand results of the devastating effects of civil war on innocents–wrote an open letter to President Bush criticizing American foreign policy. With that information in mind, it should come as no surprise that Couto is a writer whose novels carry global, social significance. Couto is a writer who cares about the world humans tend to trash, and heâ€™s a writer who believes in taking a stand.
September 26, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: Death, Magical Realism, Mia Couto, Translated Â· Posted in: Africa, Family Matters, Mystery/Suspense, Translated, World Lit, y Award Winning Author