Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 1795)

TAIKO by Eiji Yoshikawa
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 23, 1992

"Determined readers will find—buried under the hundreds of decapitated warriors—the roots of the present Japanese international business success, and the country's attitudes toward women, unions, etiquette, and suicide."
A homely, clever boy from the provinces survives a cheerless childhood and, through diligence, high-quality work, and devotion to his employers, eventually unites 16th-century Japan and becomes the country's supreme ruler. Read full book review >
MAQROLL by Alvaro Mutis
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 23, 1992

"Intriguing, then, though the drumming artifice keeps you distant."
Elegant, overworldly (in that relentless manner a certain strain of Latin American who, me, provincial? writing has: ``Not Kazan or Kanpur or Aleppo. Read full book review >

IGUANA DREAMS by Delia Poey
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 23, 1992

"Most of the standout stories are by writers with limited or regional reputations, making this a valuable introduction to their work."
Groundbreaking anthology: 29 stories of varying quality by Latino authors writing in English. Read full book review >
HELLO DARLING, ARE YOU WORKING? by Rupert Everett
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 22, 1992

"But readers hungry for the latest sex-and- drugs update on the too-too beautiful people, darling, could make this a hit anyway."
Candide in modern drag: British actor Everett's first novel retails the naughty adventures of a pill-popping, omnisexual naif as he cruises a jet-set world in which everything, especially him, is for sale. Read full book review >
SILENT FURY by Linda McHugh
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 21, 1992

"A little dab of these dirty doings will do it for ya."
A first novel of suspense that splits at the seams with murders, sleaze, beatings, fraud, and even a witch hunt. Read full book review >

MARY QUEEN OF SCOTLAND AND THE ISLES by Margaret George
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 21, 1992

"With a seamless use of original letters, diaries, and poems: a popular, readable, inordinately moving tribute to a remarkable queen."
By the author of The Autobiography of Henry VIII (1986), another vast involvement with a legendary royal. Read full book review >
NIGHTMARE FLOWER by Elizabeth Engstrom
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 18, 1992

"Often inventive and fanciful, pat and pulpy, goose-bump yarns, many of which have appeared in horror, fantasy, and sf mags."
Engstrom, author of the interesting Lizzie Borden (1991), has labored in the horror genre before (When Darkness Loves Us, 1985) with uncertain results. Read full book review >
HELEN and THE GIRLS by Hollis Summers
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 18, 1992

"Welcome grace notes to an accomplished writer's life."
Subtle evocations of lives shadowed by sadness and disappointment but saved by love—in two novellas by the late Summers (Standing Room, 1984, etc.). ``I walk a tightrope,'' asserts Ben Adams (in ``Helen'') as he begins to type his story at his lakeside cabin. ``I suppose every man walks a tightrope between sanity and depression, or perhaps desperation is a kind of sanity.'' Ben, an admitted Victorian, feels that he's been drowning in the stifling order of his monogrammed life—``A.V.A. the percale sheets say, Our lives monogrammed.'' Married to the exhaustingly capable Anita, whose favorite response is ``beautiful,'' Ben feels alienated as well from his relentlessly cheerful family, scarred by an unhappy childhood, and bored by his work—certainly not the stuff of tragedy, these smaller griefs of everyday life, though no less wearing in their effects. Read full book review >
SONS AND LOVERS by D.H. Lawrence
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 18, 1992

"Example: 'He could smell her faint perfume' returns to its original, 'He could smell her faint natural perfume, and it drove him wild with hunger."
When Sons and Lovers was first seen by its reading public in 1913, its publishers had in fact, out of caution and timidity, shortened Lawrence's originally submitted version by about ten percent—cuts that are restored in this new "uncensored and uncut" edition. Read full book review >
CHANGES AT FAIRACRE by Miss Read
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 17, 1992

"As always, there are the line drawings by John S. Goodall."
A 35th appearance for the author, who, here, takes leave of Friends of Thrush Green (1991) to chronicle neighborly doings in the English village of Fairacre and changes in the career of schoolmistress Miss Read, who narrates. Read full book review >
THE HIGHWAYMAN AND MR. DICKENS by William J. Palmer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 17, 1992

"More on the way."
This surprisingly formulaic sequel to The Detective and Mr. Dickens (1990) gets off to a brisk start with that staple of Victorian fiction, coitus interruptus, as a knock on the door brings Wilkie Collins and his sluttish doxy, Irish Meg, news that amiable lowlife Tally Ho Thompson has been arrested for two murders in a house he insists he'd been paid to break into by actor Dickie Dunn. Read full book review >
THE SECRET HISTORY by Donna Tartt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 16, 1992

"Les Nerds du Mal—and about as deep (if not nearly as involving) as a TV movie."
The Brat Pack meets The Bacchae in this precious, way-too-long, and utterly unsuspenseful town-and-gown murder tale. 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 >