Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1788)

LESTRADE AND THE MAGPIE by M.J. Trow
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Other murders follow more smartly, however, forcing Lestrade into every role from an applicant for public hangman to an extra on a lubricious historical film before Emma caps the madness by going as missing as her fiancé."
The tenth of Lestrade's 16 cases (Lestrade and the Gift of the Prince, 1999, etc.) begins with a belated murder, as Captain Paul Dacres, the fiancé of Lestrade's daughter Emma reported missing in action three years ago, summons Emma to a meeting, only to turn up very recently dead. Read full book review >
THE SAMURAI'S WIFE by Laura Joh Rowland
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Each, though, will soon be whisked through the tale, slowed only occasionally by too-blunt exposition, a too-contemporary colloquialism, or the evocative charms of an exotic setting. (Author tour)"
Despite its mighty samurai and web of spies, the military elite in Rowland's 17th-century Japan does not reign secure (The Way of the Traitor, 1997, etc.). Read full book review >

THE WATERS OF BABYLON by David Stevens
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

The Waters Of Babylon ($24.00; Apr.; 320 pp.; 0-684-86210-7): This diligent and generally quite compelling first novel, written by a successful scriptwriter for feature films (Breaker Morant, etc.) and television, fictionalizes the military and psychosexual adventures of—as its subtitle declares—"Lawrence After Arabia.'' Stevens stresses the various identities the elusive ``Ned'' (1888-1935) compulsively adopted (as ``Shaw,'' ``Ross,'' and in various Arabic guises), while doggedly tracing the sources of this scholarly adventurer's rootlessness, pansexual mood swings, and masochism to a hysterically repressive (and repressed) mother and years of soldiering and espionage during which his true sexual nature emerged and became the center of his being. Read full book review >
ESSENCE OF CAMPHOR by Naiyer Masud
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Wonderfully absorbing and rewarding: the work of a fully mature, highly accomplished artist."
The complex burdens imposed by memory and the intricacies of familial love and obligation are analyzed with breathtaking subtlety in this brilliant debut collection of seven tales, written in the Urdu language by an Indian-born writer, critic, and teacher. Read full book review >
JACKPOT JUSTICE by Marilyn J. Wooley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"The prose is brisk and clear, the heroine appealing; what is neither clear nor convincing is the rambling, shapeless plot or the overpopulated clutch of disagreeable characters who make this a debut not for the squeamish."
A first novel introducing Cassandra "Cassie" Ringwald, Ph.D., of Cedar Grove in northern California, a clinical psychologist hired by lawyer Richard Peck for her first job: a forensic evaluation of his client Homer Johnson. Read full book review >

SARAH by J.T. LeRoy
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Not exactly a laugh riot, but not as unrelievedly sordid as a plot synopsis might suggest."
Scary, sad, and way, way out there, Leroy's picaresque debut novel follows a young boy through southern truckstops, where "lot lizards" turn tricks for drivers whose tastes run from women to transvestites to boys in jeans. Read full book review >
JANE AUSTEN'S CHARLOTTE by Julia Barrett
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Even Austen's wit seems less sparkling and more forced in so trite a setting."
The pseudonymous author of two Jane Austen sequels (The Third Sister, 1996, etc.) here takes up Austen's unfinished manuscript satirizing land speculators and fashionable seaside towns, completing it with period style and dash, though plot developments are less satisfying Austen began The Brothers (better known as Sanditon, the name her survivors gave it) shortly before she died in 1817. Read full book review >
A CENTURY OF GREAT WESTERN STORIES by John Jakes
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Fans will find plenty of familiar names here (Louis L'Amour, Zane Grey, Jack London, Owen Wister), along with Marcia Muller, Loren D. Estleman, and Elmer Kelton to keep things interesting."
A Century Of Great Western Stories ($25.95; Apr.; 384 pp.; 0-312-86986-X): An anthology of 30 western tales from authors spanning the century, nicely organized by editor Jakes (American Dreams, 1998, etc.), whose introduction poses this question: "What Happened to the Western?" Read full book review >
NEBULA AWARDS: SHOWCASE 2000 by Gregory Benford
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Invaluable, not just for the splendid fiction and lively nonfiction, but as another annual snapshot, complete with grins and scowls."
The 1998 Nebula Award winners faithfully appear here—Bruce Holland Rogers's Best Short Story, "Thirteen Ways to Water"; Jane Yolen's Best Novelette, "Lost Girls"; Sheila Finch's Best Novella, "Reading the Bones"; and an excerpt from Joe Haldeman's Best Novel, Forever Peace—together with Rhysling Award (poetry) winners John Grey and Laurel Winter, and runner-up yarns from Geoffrey A. Landis, Walter Jon Williams, and Mark J. McGarry. Read full book review >
HOW IT WAS FOR ME by Andrew Sean Greer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"A newcomer with a promising imagination—and at least one good story to his credit."
A debut collection full of the usual suspects: people who have made bad decisions, who have married wrong, or who are inexplicably sad about life and . . . go on and on about it. Read full book review >
THE SFWA GRAND MASTERS by Frederik Pohl
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

A second shipment of stories showcasing another batch of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Grand Master Award recipients. Read full book review >
MORE THAN YOU KNOW by Beth Gutcheon
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 1, 2000

"Schematic plot, unconvincing characters: both undo what a potentially haunting love story."
From a usually deft storyteller (Five Fortunes, 1998, etc.), an uncompelling ghost tale, set in Maine and spanning two centuries, that fails to either beguile or bewitch. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Brad Parks
author of SAY NOTHING
March 7, 2017

In Brad Parks’ new thriller Say Nothing, judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: a prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead. It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told. “The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over,” our critic writes in a starred review. View video >