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Revealing Hannah

THE MYTH OF CASSANDRA

From the Revealing Hannah The Greek Myths series , Vol. 1

Clever, funny, and complex, if somewhat labyrinthine.

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A classics major’s life is turned upside down when she becomes part of the Greek gods’ comeback plan in this comic novel.

Hannah Summers, about to graduate with a degree in classics, should know all about the dangers of Greeks bearing gifts. But that’s no defense, it turns out, against the Greek gods. They’ve found ways to exist in the modern world; Hera, for example, runs Ladies’ Home and Hearth magazine. But a shady publicist, using the pitch that it’s time for an Olympian comeback, convinces Apollo to give Hannah, a descendant of Cassandra (whom the rejected Apollo cursed so that no one would believe her true prophecies), a gift that reverses Cassandra’s fate: everyone will listen to and believe her. As a spokesmodel for the gods, she’ll convince humans to worship Olympians again. The very organized Hannah just wants to turn in her thesis and meet her boyfriend, Carl, and his parents for dinner, but her life turns into a comedy of errors that only snowballs as Apollo’s gift starts working—but not as the Olympians had hoped. With help from some unexpected quarters, Hannah must work out a complicated plan and admit some truths about herself if she’s going to face down Greek gods and other troublemakers. In her debut novel, Fedolfi blends a smart, witty mix of ancient deities with campus culture and modern media, and it all works. Hannah’s influence spreads via YouTube, for example, and Carl’s experience with Dungeons & Dragons comes in handy along with Hannah’s classics knowledge. Fedolfi does a nice job with her characters, who trace some challenging personal journeys as they navigate the screwball plot. Though the trope of uptight person who needs unloosing through chaos is familiar, the author finds additional dimensions that add interest. Many lines are laugh-out-loud funny as well: “Is it aged single malt? Because I like my bourbon the way I like my women…old and single.” The book, though, is overburdened with lengthy explanation as well as shifting, hard-to-follow alliances; it could use sprightlier pacing and a sharper focus.

Clever, funny, and complex, if somewhat labyrinthine.

Pub Date: April 12, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-99-097931-9

Page Count: 376

Publisher: Illuminated Myth Publishing

Review Posted Online: Nov. 4, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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MAGIC HOUR

Wacky plot keeps the pages turning and enduring schmaltzy romantic sequences.

Sisters work together to solve a child-abandonment case.

Ellie and Julia Cates have never been close. Julia is shy and brainy; Ellie gets by on charm and looks. Their differences must be tossed aside when a traumatized young girl wanders in from the forest into their hometown in Washington. The sisters’ professional skills are put to the test. Julia is a world-renowned child psychologist who has lost her edge. She is reeling from a case that went publicly sour. Though she was cleared of all wrongdoing, Julia’s name was tarnished, forcing her to shutter her Beverly Hills practice. Ellie Barton is the local police chief in Rain Valley, who’s never faced a tougher case. This is her chance to prove she is more than just a fading homecoming queen, but a scarcity of clues and a reluctant victim make locating the girl’s parents nearly impossible. Ellie places an SOS call to her sister; she needs an expert to rehabilitate this wild-child who has been living outside of civilization for years. Confronted with her professional demons, Julia once again has the opportunity to display her talents and salvage her reputation. Hannah (The Things We Do for Love, 2004, etc.) is at her best when writing from the girl’s perspective. The feral wolf-child keeps the reader interested long after the other, transparent characters have grown tiresome. Hannah’s torturously over-written romance passages are stale, but there are surprises in store as the sisters set about unearthing Alice’s past and creating a home for her.

Wacky plot keeps the pages turning and enduring schmaltzy romantic sequences.

Pub Date: March 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-345-46752-3

Page Count: 400

Publisher: Ballantine

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2005

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THE CATCHER IN THE RYE

A strict report, worthy of sympathy.

A violent surfacing of adolescence (which has little in common with Tarkington's earlier, broadly comic, Seventeen) has a compulsive impact.

"Nobody big except me" is the dream world of Holden Caulfield and his first person story is down to the basic, drab English of the pre-collegiate. For Holden is now being bounced from fancy prep, and, after a vicious evening with hall- and roommates, heads for New York to try to keep his latest failure from his parents. He tries to have a wild evening (all he does is pay the check), is terrorized by the hotel elevator man and his on-call whore, has a date with a girl he likes—and hates, sees his 10 year old sister, Phoebe. He also visits a sympathetic English teacher after trying on a drunken session, and when he keeps his date with Phoebe, who turns up with her suitcase to join him on his flight, he heads home to a hospital siege. This is tender and true, and impossible, in its picture of the old hells of young boys, the lonesomeness and tentative attempts to be mature and secure, the awful block between youth and being grown-up, the fright and sickness that humans and their behavior cause the challenging, the dramatization of the big bang. It is a sorry little worm's view of the off-beat of adult pressure, of contemporary strictures and conformity, of sentiment….

A strict report, worthy of sympathy.

Pub Date: June 15, 1951

ISBN: 0316769177

Page Count: -

Publisher: Little, Brown

Review Posted Online: Nov. 2, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1951

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