Fiction & Literature Book Reviews (page 8)

A COLUMN OF FIRE by Ken Follett
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"It's all a bit overwrought for what is, after all, a boy-loves-girl, boy-swashbuckles-to-win-girl yarn, but it's competently done. Follett's fans will know what to expect—and they won't be disappointed."
A flying buttress of a book, continuing the hefty Kingsbridge saga historical novelist Follett began with Pillars of the Earth (1989) and World Without End (2007). Read full book review >
FOREST DARK by Nicole Krauss
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"An ambitiously high-concept tale that mainly idles in a contemplative register."
Two American visitors to Israel undergo separate but similar metamorphoses in this cerebral novel by Krauss (Great House, 2010, etc.). Read full book review >

LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE by Celeste Ng
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"With her second novel, Ng further proves she's a sensitive, insightful writer with a striking ability to illuminate life in America."
This incandescent portrait of suburbia and family, creativity, and consumerism burns bright. Read full book review >
LANDSCAPE WITH INVISIBLE HAND by M.T. Anderson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"Resplendent with Anderson's trademark dry, sarcastic wit, this brief, complicated read serves as a scathing social commentary and, as the title indicates, an interrogation of free market economics. (Science fiction. 14-adult)"
Humans inhabit the bottom echelons in this brief satirical novel of alien invasion that envisions a scenario more whimper than bang. Read full book review >
THE DRAGONFLY by Kate Dunn
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"This emotional high-wire act should have readers racing to the end."
A novel plunges a newly acquainted grandfather and granddaughter into adventures on the French canals. Read full book review >

LOVE AND FAMINE by Han-ping  Chin
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"Both epic and personal, this novel chronicles two decades of love, loss, history, and culture—and the complex tensions that arise from these forces—during the turbulent Mao era."
One should add "Politics" to the two abstractions of the title, for Chin's fictional world is infused with the cultural and personal consequences of Mao's Great Leap Forward. Read full book review >
CALL DOWN THE HAWK by Sheila Simonson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"The forth in Simonson's Latouche County series (Beyond Confusion, 2013, etc.) marries a story that draws you in with some fascinating characters worth being drawn to. The ending, alas, is a letdown."
Two dysfunctional families in Washington state are sunk in a morass of murder and suicide. Read full book review >
MARCH OF CRIME by Jess Lourey
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"Earthy language, quirky suspects, and much related tomfoolery for those who like their comic mayhem painted in broad strokes."
The founding member of the Murder-by-Month club is at it again. Read full book review >
THAT LAST WEEKEND by Laura DiSilverio
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"DiSilverio's signature easy-to-follow plotting draws readers in without relying on a specific theme, as proven by recent forays into science fiction (Incubation, 2016, etc.) and political thrillers (Close Call, 2016, etc.)."
Returning to the scene of a past crime, five friends don't know whom to trust because they fear one of them may be a murderer. Read full book review >
HOUSE. TREE. PERSON. by Catriona McPherson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"Although the idea isn't original, the clever way McPherson (Quiet Neighbors, 2016, etc.) reveals each hint of the truth makes this a one-sitting read."
A Scottish woman's psychological history causes her to question her sanity. Read full book review >
A CHRISTMAS PERIL by J. A. Hennrikus
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 8, 2017

"Despite its title, blessedly light on the holiday trimmings. But the backstage antics, the second-act romance, the hard-boiled back story, the family drama, and the tourist-town backdrop are too many disparate elements that never gel. Unsatisfying and forgettable."
Ex-cop Edwina "Sully" Sullivan struggles to keep a ragtag theater company afloat while working with her ex-husband to solve a murder in this series debut from Hennrikus, who's also written as Julianne Holmes (Clock and Dagger, 2016, etc.). Read full book review >
HOUSE ON JACARANDA HILL by Mary Kay Abbott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 7, 2017

"An often moving story about the corrosive power of shame."
In Abbott's (Pearl of Baxter Grove, 2009, etc.) novel set in the 1950s, a 16-year-old girl discovers a diary and becomes obsessed with deciphering a cryptic entry within it. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >