Archive for the ‘US Mid-Atlantic’ Category

ALL OUR NAMES by Dinaw Mengestu

Mengestu’s third novel—another about the immigrant experience—is his most accomplished and soulful, in my opinion. He returns again to the pain of exile and the quest for identity, as well as the need for a foreigner from a poor and developing country to reinvent himself. In addition, he alternates the landscape of post-colonial Uganda with the racially tense Midwest of the 1970s, and demonstrates that the feeling of exile can also exist in an American living in her own hometown. The cultural contrast of both countries, with a narrative that alternates back and forth, intensifies the sense of tenuous hope mixed with shattered illusions.

March 13, 2014 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , , ,  · Posted in: Africa, Class - Race - Gender, Reading Guide, US Mid-Atlantic, World Lit, y Award Winning Author


From the opening pages, it is evident that Gilbert can write with lyricism, confidence, and substance. I was afraid that her mass popularity would lead to a dumbed down book with pandering social/political agendas or telegraphed notions. I am thrilled to conclude that this was not the case. Gilbert is a superb writer who allows her main characters to spring forth as organically as the natural world that they live in.

December 5, 2013 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Character Driven, Facing History, Family Matters, Reading Guide, United States, US Mid-Atlantic

LONG DRIVE HOME by Will Allison

It’s rare that I start a book that is such a page-turner that I almost have a panic attack if I have to put it down. LONG DRIVE HOME by Will Allison is just such a book. It starts with a bang and the explosives just continue. It’s not that the book is a thriller, per se, though there is that element to the novel. It is just that Will Allison is a born story-teller and he gets the reader in his grips from the first paragraph. And he does not let go.

May 18, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Contemporary, Psychological Suspense, Reading Guide, US Mid-Atlantic

NUDE WALKER by Bathsheba Monk

THE NUDE WALKER in Bathsheba Monk’s entertaining read is Barbara Warren, a schizophrenic who tends to walk around downtown Warrenside in the buff when she’s off her meds. The Warrens were once the industrial scions in Warrenside, a fictional town in Pennsylvania. As the town, which used to be the center of the booming steel industry, gradually went into decline, so too rusted the fortunes of the Warrens. These days, Barbara isolates herself in the past, clinging on to memories of the glory days and worrying (because nobody else will, she says) that by 2012, European Americans would be the minority in town.

March 18, 2011 · Judi Clark · Comments Closed
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Class - Race - Gender, Contemporary, Debut Novel, Reading Guide, US Mid-Atlantic


Laura Lippman’s THE GIRL IN THE GREEN RAINCOAT is a takeoff on REAR WINDOW, the film in which Jimmy Stewart, who is laid up and bored, eavesdrops on his neighbors. Thirty-five year old Tess Monaghan, private investigator, is pregnant and on forced bed rest. Although her boyfriend, Crow, has been patient and accommodating with his irritable partner, Tess is restless and annoyed that she cannot go about her business, which includes conducting surveillance, enjoying alcoholic beverages, and eating her favorite junk foods. She decides to use binoculars to help her do some sleuthing. On a number of occasions, Tess has observed a girl wearing a green raincoat walking her Italian greyhound. Suddenly, the girl disappears, and Tess observes the dog running around by himself, his leash dangling.

January 19, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Humorous, Reading Guide, Sleuths Series, US Mid-Atlantic, y Award Winning Author

PHILADELPHIA NOIR edited by Carlin Romano

Akhasic Press’ new collection of noir stories is Philadelphia Noir, with 15 stories based in various parts of the city and one neighboring town (Narberth, PA). Finally, after many US and foreign cities already having a collection or some cities having two, one of the US oldest, and darkest cities has a collection of its own.

January 15, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Noir, Short Stories, US Mid-Atlantic