REVIEWED: A HISS BEFORE DYING

A Hiss Before Dying by Rita Mae Brown and Sneaky Pie Brown (Cat Detective Novel, 2017). Yes, our favorite feline co-author and her human helper are at it again. The title is, of course, a playful pun on a classic hardboiled mystery novel (shame on you for two weeks, if you can’t puzzle out which one). […]

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REVIEWED: War Cry

War Cry by Wilbur Smith and David Churchill (Historical Novel, 2017). I found this sprawling historical novel readable, yet somewhat disappointing. Smith is a very experienced and respected historical novelist (take note of Stephen King’s front cover proclamation as to his abilities). He’s published several highly successful series, including the Courtney Family books, of which this […]

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REVIEWED: Uncle Tom’s Cabin

Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. (Historical Novel/Classic Literature, 1852). This anti-slavery epic from shortly before the American Civil War is of great historical significance (Lincoln himself claimed that it played a major part in bringing on the war itself). It was certainly in its time an influential and controversial book. Yet as a famous […]

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REVIEWED: The Ends of the Earth

The Ends of the Earth by Robert Goddard (Historical Espionage Novel, 2015/2017). Not to be confused with nautical historical adventure series by William Golding, this is the concluding volume of a spy/revenge/mystery trilogy set in the confused aftermath of World War I. James Maxted (Max to his friends) was an ace fighter pilot during the Great War. He […]

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REVIEWED: Feast Of Sorrow

Feast of Sorrow by Crystal King. (Historical Novel, April 2017). This unusually good first novel is a well-researched, discerning and ultimately quite poignant book about life in Ancient Rome. Thrasius, an educated slave with special culinary skills, movingly narrates this first-person tale. While he is a fictional character, many of those he comes into contact with […]

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REVIEWED: Before the War

Before the War by Fay Weldon (Historical Novel, 2016/2017). This bitingly satirical romp of a novel details a wildly dysfunctional English family’s misadventures from 1922 up to the day in the autumn of 1939 when the slow simmering background tensions in Europe finally boil over in open war with Hitler’s Germany. There’s plenty of fine period […]

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