THE PROFESSOR OF TRUTH by James Robertson

On December 21, 1988, almost exactly twenty-five years ago as I write, Pan American flight 103 from London to New York was brought down by a bomb and crashed over the small town of Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 people aboard and eleven more on the ground. Although others may have been implicated, only one man was convicted of planting the bomb, a Libyan national who was released several years later on compassionate grounds; he died of prostrate cancer in 2012. His death may well have been the trigger for Scottish author James Robertson’s imaginative and morally profound novel; it is certainly the event with which it opens.

December 28, 2013 · Judi Clark · Comments Closed
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: Facing History, Thriller/Spy/Caper

LAMB by Bonnie Nadzam

David Lamb has the emotional life of a Rubik’s Cube. All the pieces are there but it seems impossible at times to get his emotional life organized, put together, and working well. He’s like a chess game played by one person, every piece under his dominion, tutelage and control. Only he can checkmate his own self. Damned if he does, damned if he doesn’t.

October 12, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Character Driven, Contemporary, Debut Novel, Literary, US Frontier West, US Midwest

CALLING MR. KING by Ronald De Feo

CALLING MR KING by Ronald De Feo is an exhilarating read. It is poignant, funny, serious and sad. It grabs the reader from the beginning and we go on a short but rich journey with Mr. King, a hit-man, an employee of The Firm, as he transforms himself from a killer to a would-be intellectual and lover of art and architecture.

September 1, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: 2011 Favorites, Debut Novel, Humorous, Mystery/Suspense, New York City, Psychological Suspense, World Lit

THE RESERVOIR by John Milliken Thompson

Tommie Cluverius is on trial for murder in the first degree. The charge is that he killed Lillie Madison and threw her into a reservoir where she drowned. The year is 1885 and Richmond, Virginia is the scene of the crime. Did Tommie kill Lillie or was it suicide? Did someone else kill Lillie and try to pin the crime on Tommie? The outcome of the trial will determine whether Tommie lives or goes to the gallows.

June 21, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , , ,  · Posted in: Debut Novel, Facing History, Mystery/Suspense, US South

GALORE by Michael Crummey

Michael Crummey opens his new novel with Judah, sitting in a “makeshift asylum cell, shut away with the profligate stink of fish that clung to him all his days.” Only Mary Tryphena Devine comes near him these days, urging him to take a little food – or, if he doesn’t want to eat – to just die. Judah’s story is the primary, yet not the only otherworldly theme that glides through this multigenerational family saga, touching everybody in its wake. The novel is set in one of Newfoundland’s wild and rough eastern coastal regions, and, more specifically, in two remote fishing villages, Paradise Deep and The Gut.

April 8, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Allegory/Fable, Canada, Commonwealth Prize, Facing History, Speculative (Beyond Reality), World Lit, y Award Winning Author

SEVEN YEARS by Peter Stamm

The title and the description on the back cover suggest a familiar story of adultery as in the movie The Seven Year Itch: husband, getting bored after seven years of marriage, looks for a younger and prettier woman elsewhere. And indeed there is something of this. But Swiss author Peter Stamm goes out of his way to minimize any normal comparisons between the women. Alexander, the first-person narrator, is married to Sonia, a fellow architect, but more brilliant, more determined than he is, from a wealthier family, beautiful, and self-assured. The other woman, Ivona, is actually an earlier acquaintance, an undocumented Polish worker, dowdy, inarticulate, religious, not at all attractive, yet familiar…

March 23, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Character Driven, Contemporary, Translated, World Lit