Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 3)

THE FOUR BOOKS by Yan Lianke
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Yan cements his reputation as one of China's most important—and certainly most fearless—living writers."
A searing, allegorical view of Chinese society during some of the darkest moments of the Mao era. Read full book review >
THE BRETHREN by Robert Merle
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Merle's is a French epic, more genteel than Dickens' poor-child English tales and less doleful than Tolstoy's Russian sagas."
The compelling first in a series of French historical novels, deftly translated and published for the first time in English. Read full book review >

GIDEON'S CHILDREN by Howard G. Franklin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"A thriller with a unique story idea and a well-captured historical mood but hampered by one-dimensional characters."
An idealistic young public defender and his colleagues decide to stop plea-bargaining in Franklin's (An Irish Experience, 2008, etc.) historical novel.The year 1968 was a tumultuous time in America. Read full book review >
JOHN THE PUPIL by David Flusfeder
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"This virgin's pilgrimage in service of God and wisdom is more intellectual exercise than tale of intrigue, more allegory than adventure."
Flusfeder (A Film by Spencer Ludwig, 2010, etc.) entrusts John the Pupil with placing Roger Bacon's Great Work in the hands of Pope Clement IV.Read full book review >
EPITAPH by Mary Doria Russell
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Despite all that has been written and filmed about Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp, Russell's pointedly anti-epic anti-romance is so epic and romantic that it whets the reader's appetite for more."
Russell follows up her fictional portrait of Doc Holliday (Doc, 2011) with this fictional deconstruction of the shootout at the O.K. Corral.Read full book review >

GWENDOLEN by Diana Souhami
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Playing with ideas about creativity, exploring Victorian gender roles and women's rights, Souhami's first novel is a well-crafted, idea-driven curiosity."
Rearranging the characters in George Eliot's Daniel Deronda, acclaimed British biographer Souhami (Murder at Wrotham Hill, 2012, etc.) audaciously puts a modern spin on a literary classic.Read full book review >
MRS. GRANT AND MADAME JULE by Jennifer Chiaverini
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Chiaverini's fans will love this light historical romance, but readers hoping for a fully imagined slave-to-freedwoman's journey will be disappointed."
Two Julias, one born into prosperity, the other into slavery, witness the rise of the Civil War and the beginnings of Reconstruction. Read full book review >
SMALL MERCIES by Eddie Joyce
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"The novel unpacks a lot of emotional baggage (even without the 9/11 references), but readers will get to know these characters and care about them to the very last page.
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An emotionally rich debut novel about family dynamics in the wake of tragedy. Read full book review >
THE BURIED GIANT by Kazuo Ishiguro
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Lovely: a fairy tale for grown-ups, both partaking in and departing from a rich literary tradition."
A lyrical, allusive (and elusive) voyage into the mists of British folklore by renowned novelist Ishiguro (Never Let Me Go, 2005, etc.). Read full book review >
THE BOOKSELLER by Cynthia Swanson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Unfortunately, Kitty is too perfect and naïve in both her worlds to be very interesting. And for a novel about a bibliophile, there's little about books beyond an adolescent interest."
The cat-owning spinster co-owner of a struggling independent bookstore begins to experience more-than-vivid dreams of an alternate life in this debut novel. Read full book review >
LEAVING BERLIN by Joseph Kanon
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Another compelling, intellectually charged period piece by Kanon, who works in the shadows of fear as well as anyone now writing."
Set in 1949, a few years after Kanon's The Good German (2001), this novel explores the grave moral complexities of life in Soviet-controlled East Berlin through the tense encounters of Alex Meier, a young Jewish novelist of some renown working for the CIA.Read full book review >
TOO BAD TO DIE by Francine Mathews
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: March 3, 2015

"Mathews writes well, keeps the pace brisk and has great fun re-creating historical personages."
If the title sounds reminiscent of a James Bond novel, it's no coincidence, for Mathews freely makes use of Ian Fleming's World War II experience as an intelligence officer in Cairo and Tehran to create adventures in espionage and counterespionage. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Gabrielle Zevin
March 3, 2015

A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over—and see everything anew. “Zevin writes characters who grow and prosper,” our reviewer writes, “in a narrative that is sometimes sentimental, sometimes funny, sometimes true to life and always entertaining.” View video >