Reviews > Books

8 Apr 2003 // 1:00 AM

Small Town by Lawrence Block

Maybe the author is still too shell-shocked by 9/11 to write his 'real' 9/11 novel.

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Skipping Towards Gomorrah: The Seven Deadly Sins and the Pursuit of Happiness in America by Dan Sava

Sinners, unlike the virtuous, do not attempt to impose their definition of happiness on others.

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Our Story: 77 Hours Underground by The Quecreek Miners, as told to Jeff Goodell

The story reveals an extraordinary and untapped subculture of modern day coal miners and their families.

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8 Apr 2003 // 1:00 AM

The benchmark of a 20th century lesbian feminist scholar who acknowledges the healing nature of narrative.

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8 Apr 2003 // 1:00 AM

The Miracles of Santo Fico by D. L Smith

A wry and whimsical comedy of errors in which human foibles and the providential hand of fate mysteriously combine to create happy accidents.

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The Good, the Bad and the Inevitable by Barbara Holborow

She is of the opinion . . . that some young offenders cannot be saved, no matter how severe the punishment or how tight the hug.

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101 Poems That Could Save Your Life: An Anthology of Emotional First Aid by Daisy Goodwin

Despite the variety of emotional ailments they address, it is done so with a general monotony of procedure and voice.

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Naked at Work and Other Fears: How to Stay Sane When Your Job Drives You Crazy by Paul Hellman

Just because your boss grunted at you does not mean he hates you and is about to fire you . . . he may just be having a bad day.

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2 Apr 2003 // 1:00 AM

Mrs. Kimble by Jennifer Haigh

Like a surgeon, [the author] cuts to the bone of what makes love between two people such an elusive, baffling, frustrating, contradictory, confounding sort of thing.

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Important Things That Don’t Matter by David Amsden

The plot is pure pop culture -- coming of age, learning about sex, going through puberty, and defining family in whatever functional/dysfunctional terms fit.

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Glory Goes and Gets Some by Emily Carter

The reader is softly insinuated into a world where everything slips out of kilter.

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The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

The characters are believable, the fictional premise intriguing, and it has two major components to insure sales -- the Knights Templar and the search for the Holy Grail.

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Bandits & Bibles:  Convict Literature in Nineteenth-Century America by Larry E. Sullivan

It captures [an] era when bad guys wore black and good women fell for them.

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Pandora’s Handbag: Adventures in the Book World by Elizabeth Young

Elizabeth Young is ultimately a book lover's reviewer rather than a conventional industry hack.

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A Plague of Frogs; Unraveling an Environmental Mystery by William Souder

Frogs are supposed to be a 'sentinel species' . . . If frogs are doing badly, we have reason to be anxious.

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19 Mar 2003 // 1:00 AM

The New Biographical Dictionary of Film by David Thomson

Both in throwing his bricks and presenting his bouquets, [the author] seems curiously off the mark.

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19 Mar 2003 // 1:00 AM

Layne Staley: Angry Chair by Adriana Rubio

The book is nothing more than one fan's viewpoint on the tortured existence of Staley.

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Inviting Disaster: Lessons from the Edge of Catastrophe by James R. Chiles

Disasters rarely happen by accident. Instead, they occur when one link in a long chain of events fails.

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19 Mar 2003 // 1:00 AM

Food and Loathing: A Lament by Betsy Lerner

What we have here is yet another memoir -- excuse me, lament -- on disordered eating suitable for a made-for-TV movie.

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19 Mar 2003 // 1:00 AM

About Schmidt by Louis Begley

Offers an important meditation on the enduring meanings of age, maturity and experience in a world increasingly devoted to the brevity of youth.

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