Friday, March 6, 2015

Books Read - February 2015

Baron, Aileen
  • A Fly Has A Hundred Eyes **
Fiction.  First in a mystery series set in Israel and starring Lily Sampson, an American archaeologist working under a British boss in the turmoil leading up to WWII.  Between bombings, beheadings, and random murders in the streets, Lily is stunned to hear that her boss has been murdered and several artifacts are missing from the dig.  Particularly important to her is a blue amphoriskos, similar to one that her father had given her as a child.  She is determined to find the item, but finds herself involved in gun running and looking for clues into her boss’ murder.

Befeler, Mike
  • Mystery of the Dinner Playhouse *
Fiction. Cozy mystery set in Colorado starring a retired police detective who discovers a murderer in a local mystery dinner theatre.

Burnett, Frances Hodgson
  • The Secret Garden *****
Fiction.  Young Mary is orphaned in India and sent back to England to live with her reclusive uncle.  She hears a tale of a secret garden, a garden that has been locked away for ten years since her aunt passed away, and Mary is determined to find it.  Another mystery is the cry of a young person that Mary hears, but when she inquires about it to the house staff, she is told it is only the wind.  When she discovers the truth, the answers to the questions she has about the secret garden become clear.

Cabot, Meg
  • Avalon High ***
Fiction. The story of Arthur as retold in the lives of five teenagers in a Maryland town with a high school called Avalon.

Carroll, Emily
  • Through the Woods ***
Fiction. Graphic novel. Five spine-tingling stories.

Christie, Agatha
  • The Mousetrap and Other Plays *****
Fiction.  Collection of eight mystery plays written by Agatha Christie.

Dartnell, Ashley 
- Farangi Girl **
Non-fiction.  Memoir of an American woman born and brought up in Iran, where her British father worked as a civil engineer.  A turbulent childhood led by horrible parents during a time of great unrest in the Middle East.

Dilloway, Margaret
  • How to Be An American Housewife ****
Fiction.  Based on her mother’s life in WWII-era Japan, Dilloway borrows from Amy Tan telling the story from a mother’s Asian POV then her daughter’s American part of the story.  Engaging and entertaining with a respect for the seriousness of the times, this is a very well-told story.

Gerritsen, Tess
  • The Apprentice ***
Fiction.  Second in the Rizzoli & Isles police procedural series.  Rizzoli is still dealing with her fears from her encounter with Warren Hoyt the year before, and her hands bear physical scars of her torture. When a copycat begins killing in Boston, Rizzoli has to face those fears in order to do her job.

Hoffman, Alice
  • Fortune’s Daughter ***
Fiction. The lives of two women intersect when Lila reads tea leaves for Rae. What she sees in the teacup shakes her world, and she refuses to see Rae again. Rae is in a relationship with Jessup, a narcissist who never really sees her, and she lives in constant fear that he will leave her. Up until the day he does.

Jackson, Shirley
  • We Have Always Lived in the Castle *****
Fiction.  Strange story of two sisters who live with their elderly uncle in a small village as outcasts. The villagers scorn them and hurl insults at them, but the three Blackwoods live in their own little world set apart in their “castle”.  

Lee, Harper
  • To Kill A Mockingbird *****
Fiction.  Atticus Finch is raising his two children the best that he can, but his son Jem and daughter Scout are left pretty free to their own devices, which sometimes gets them into trouble.  The summer that Atticus has to defend a black man accused of raping a white girl spells trouble for the family and for the whole town.  But Atticus is firm in his belief that all men should be treated equally, and he’s willing to put his life on the line to protect his client.

Paterson, Katherine
  • Bridge to Terabithia ***
Fiction.  Jesse Aarons lives to run.  He wants to be the fastest runner in the fifth grade.  On the day of the first race, a girl joins the boys to run, and she beats them.  All of them.  Her name is Leslie, and she has just moved to the farm next to Jesse’s.  Within a short while, they are fast friends, and Leslie introduces him to the mythical land of Terabithia.

Yousafzai, Malala
  • I am Malala *****

Non-fiction. Memoir of Malala Yousafzai, the Pashtun girl who was shot in the face by a member of the Taliban in Pakistan.  She fights for the rights for everyone to receive an education, though she comes from a culture that doesn’t value educated women.

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