Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1743)

SCHOOL FOR PAGAN LOVERS by Edmund Keeley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 20, 1993

"Disappointingly lifeless love story that pushes all the right buttons but makes no music."
This seventh novel from Keeley (A Wilderness Called Peace, 1985, etc.), a well-known translator of modern Greek poetry, tells of young lovers crossed by war and fate—a story more enervating than erotic, despite all the lengthy and explicit sex scenes. Read full book review >
NORTH STAR CONSPIRACY by Miriam Grace Monfredo
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 17, 1993

Unmarried (by choice) librarian Glynis Tryon (Seneca Falls Inheritance, 1992) learns firsthand of the iniquities of slavery when her boardinghouse landlady's son Niles returns to their western New York home with Kiri—a beautiful mulatto slave he helped escape from a Virginia plantation. Read full book review >

CARRIAGE TRADE by Stephen Birmingham
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 16, 1993

"The author's following—carriage-to-subway trade—is a given."
Latest in Birmingham's infatuations with other peoples' lives (Shades of Fortune, 1989, etc.)—here in another of his popular tales of Manhattan mensch on the move, with shaky pasts and glittery presents, their women and their well-kept secrets. Read full book review >
TO DIE LIKE A GENTLEMAN by Bernard Bastable
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 16, 1993

"The enthralled reader, briskly carried along by the author's literate, subtle, suspenseful narrative, may feel a bit let down by the abruptness of the windup—but the going is sheer delight in the hands of a master of the genre."
Author Robert Barnard, writing for the first time as Bernard Bastable, sets his story in the English countryside of 1842 and in the Elmstead Court household of Sir Richard Hudson—comprised of Sir Richard, his wife, son Andrew, and three daughters, the oldest of whom is rebellious 18-year-old Jane. Read full book review >
CITY OF LIGHT by Cyrus Colter
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 16, 1993

"This one reads like a cross between the haunted feverish prose of James Baldwin and the lyricism of a William Styron."
An overheated Shakespearian tragedy about a black man who leaves the US for France to pursue the radical dream of a black homeland—from the author of, most recently, The Amoralists and A Chocolate Soldier (both 1988). Read full book review >

VANISHED by Danielle Steel
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 16, 1993

"The smashing duds and digs are still there—plus the subject's predictable pull. (First printing of 1,000,000; Literary Guild Dual Selection for October)"
Like Belva Plain in Whispers (p. 326), Steel soft-pedals gauzy romance in a fairly tightly plotted story—set mainly in 1930's Manhattan and about a lady wildly unlucky in love who's forced to deal with crime—in this case, kidnapping. Read full book review >
THE WRESTLER'S CRUEL STUDY by Stephen Dobyns
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 16, 1993

"There are sluggish passages here, notably those involving the hairsplitting Disputants, but only a churl would linger over defects in a work that is so stunningly imaginative, so liberating in its sense of possibilities in life and art, and so much fun."
Two gorillas abduct a beautiful maiden from her Manhattan apartment; her fiancÇ, a celebrity wrestler, seeks her recovery. Read full book review >
THE VALUE OF KINDNESS by Ellyn Bache
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 15, 1993

"A large-hearted collection that ranges over space and time to tell the stories of women who withstand various social pressures and remain only themselves."
A debut collection of 16 stories by novelist Bache (Safe Passage, 1988; Festival in Fire Season, 1992), this year's winner of the Willa Cather Fiction Prize. Read full book review >
THE KINGSBRIDGE PLOT by Maan Meyers
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 12, 1993

"Simplistic character motivation and political explanation make this second in a series- -by pseudonymous coauthors Martin and Annette Meyers (the Patrick Hardy and Smith & Wetzon mysteries, respectively)—better suited to a YA audience."
Upon returning to New-York (it's 1775) from London to take over his late father's medical practice, John Tonneman, a descendant of Pieter's (The Dutchman, 1992), is appointed coroner and soon runs afoul of a serial killer who fancies beheading redheaded slatterns and, for a change of pace, decapitates John's graying housekeeper. Read full book review >
BENEATH THE WIND by Cordelia Frances Biddle
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 12, 1993

"Full sail, no breeze."
A debut by the daughter of one of Phillie's first families that tells the story of a grand circumnavigation of the globe aboard a yacht—the Alcedo—in 1903. Read full book review >
CRAZY IN ALABAMA by Mark Childress
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 11, 1993

"Threading a thin line between bizarre comedy and ugly southern reality, this is a deftly balanced tale that unravels in the end- -when the fantastic and tragic elements clash in a finale both brutal and banal."
Flames of passion and rebellion confront the darkness of intolerance in Alabama, with many a macabre twist—in Childress's latest southern-fried coming-of-age tale (V for Victor, 1984; Tender, 1990, etc.). Read full book review >
STRIKE OF THE COBRA by Timothy Rizzi
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Aug. 10, 1993

"Heart-in-mouth, max G-force, stunningly realistic air action- -here unimpeded by too-fleshy characters."
A routine space shuttle mission goes sour, turning into a Libyan-US conflagration, with the PLO tossed in for good measure— in a second novel from Rizzi (Nightstalker, 1992). Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Luis Alberto Urrea
April 21, 2015

Examining the borders between one nation and another, between one person and another, Luis Alberto Urrea’s latest story collection, The Water Museum, reveals his mastery of the short form. This collection includes the Edgar-award winning "Amapola" and his now-classic "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses," which had the honor of being chosen for NPR's "Selected Shorts" not once but twice. Urrea has also recently published a poetry collection, Tijuana Book of the Dead, mixing lyricism and colloquial voices, mysticism and the daily grind. We talk to Urrea about both of his new books this week on Kirkus TV. View video >