Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1768)

THE CHILDREN IN THE WOODS by Frederick Busch
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"This fondness for their foibles deteriorates, out of habit, into teddy-bear fables about pain."
Unlike novelists who use the short-story as a sketchpad for longer works, or as a completely different formal challenge, Busch tends to freeze-dry his novels into stories' smaller spaces, keeping the same domestic point of view and eschewing too-sharp drama. Read full book review >
PRAYING FOR SLEEP by Jeffery Deaver
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Overlong, overheated, wildly uneven, but undeniably throat- clutching: Halloween for grownups. (First printing of 50,000)"
Deaver (The Lesson of Her Death, 1993, etc.) hurtles through the 12 hours following the escape of enormous, schizophrenic Michael Hrubek as he makes his way from Marsden State Hospital to the home of Lisbonne Atcheson—the woman who testified against him at his murder trial. Read full book review >

GRAND PASSION by Jayne Ann Krentz
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"High sugar, low fiber."
Thin romantic suspense larded with soft-core porn—in a first hardcover from veteran Krentz (aka Amanda Quick). Read full book review >
VARIOUS ANTIDOTES by Joanna Scott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Sensitively nuanced insights into the more macabre manifestations of human behavior, by a writer of admirable originality."
A first collection from Scott (Arrogance, 1990, etc.) explores, in luminous prose, the obdurate nature of obsession in real and imaginary characters. Read full book review >
THE WOMAN BETWEEN THE WORLDS by F. Gwynplaine MacIntyre
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Hard-working, evocative, and suitably macabre—but with the rather thin plot and largely superfluous literary luminaries, not altogether convincing."
Overstuffed, waggish, literary-figured Victorian fantasy on the ``Invisible Man'' theme: MacIntyre's eccentric, stimulating debut. Read full book review >

WILDERNESS by Gerald Hausman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Manly, masterly feats described in a breathless manner certain to appeal to hunters, trappers, and would-be adventurers in the wild—but mindlessly tedious for everyone else."
Native American expert Hausman and science-fiction maestro Zelazny team up to deliver a heart-pounding pair of interlocking yarns—fictionalized tributes to the fortitude, skill, and luck of two early mountain men, John Colter and Hugh Glass. Read full book review >
THE FERMATA by Nicholson Baker
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"But drama is drama and porn porn, this among the most literary-respectable of the latter that money can buy."
The talented Baker returns with sex for sophisticates, making Vox (1992) seem like a warmup exercise. Read full book review >
LOVE AND RERUNS IN ADAMS COUNTY by Mark Spencer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 1, 1994

"Raymond Carver without the soul."
Low-life America has its day in this first novel by an eight- time Pushcart nominee: a tale of a high-school baseball star, the cheerleader who married him, and their long, painful, post-teenaged decline, first explored in novella form in Spencer's collection, Wedlock (1990). Read full book review >
HAPPINESS by Ann Harleman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 31, 1994

"Each story turns on a metaphor that almost flowers but often doesn't."
Mixed praise for the 1993 John Simmons Short Fiction Award winner from Iowa. Read full book review >
DIARY OF A LOST BOY by Harry Kondoleon
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 31, 1994

"Kondoleon's ending is bothersome (as a bridge to Hector's embrace of death, there's a dreamy, soft-focus wedding of two gay teenagers that doesn't quite work), but, overall, his view of the plague—written from the nerve-ends—is funny, scary, and moving."
From prolific off-Broadway playwright Kondoleon: a quirky second novel (following The Whore of Tjampuan Paj, 1988) that details the bumpy ride of a gay man with AIDS. Read full book review >
WHERE LOVE LEAVES US by Renée Manfredi
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 31, 1994

"Daring and interesting, but also long and overly detailed, without a crowning message."
Nine intricately configured stories—many about fathers and daughters on the Italian south side of Pittsburgh in the 1960's—by 1993 Iowa Short Fiction Award co-winner Manfredi (see Williford, below). Read full book review >
MACAULEY'S THUMB by Lex Williford
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 31, 1994

"A writer to watch."
An impressive and highly readable debut from the co-winner of the 1993 Iowa Short Fiction Award (see Manfredi, above). Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Sara Paretsky
author of BRUSH BACK
July 28, 2015

No one would accuse V. I. Warshawski of backing down from a fight, but there are a few she’d be happy to avoid. High on that list is tangling with Chicago political bosses. Yet that’s precisely what she ends up doing when she responds to Frank Guzzo’s plea for help in Brush Back, the latest thriller from bestselling author Sara Paretsky. For six stormy weeks back in high school, V.I. thought she was in love with Frank. He broke up with her, she went off to college, he started driving trucks for Bagby Haulage. She forgot about him until the day his mother was convicted of bludgeoning his kid sister, Annie, to death. Stella Guzzo was an angry, uncooperative prisoner and did a full 25 years for her daughter’s murder. Newly released from prison, Stella is looking for exoneration, so Frank asks V.I. for help. “Paretsky, who plots more conscientiously than anyone else in the field, digs deep, then deeper, into past and present until all is revealed,” our reviewer writes. View video >