Gorky Park by Martin Cruz Smith

February 24th, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Charles|Tags: , |

Just fantastic. Russian investigator Arkady Renko plods fatalistically through a homicide investigation despite resistance from all quarters. Though the author is an American jornalist, he paints a compelling picture of the bewildering contradictions of cold-war Russia and populates it with memorable characters. The dialog is especially strong. Back

Citizen by Claudia Rankine

February 23rd, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Mike|Tags: , |

Lyrical and profound, these observations explore the interactions between African-American culture and American racism. Using multiple formats Rankine critiques topics as wide ranging as Serena Williams’ reception as a superstar in the world of tennis to the author’s own personal daily interactions. She carefully builds a case that

The Sellout by Paul Beatty

February 23rd, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Mike|Tags: , |

This book is outrageous throughout, in ways both hilarious and offensive, with no clear separation between the two, but that just shows how hard-hitting the satire is. It is a brutal satire on race, and nearly everything race-related, including slavery and segregation. Beatty irreverently digs into these sensitive

The Vegetarian by Han Kang

February 23rd, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Mike|Tags: , |

This is one of those books you read with fascination watching the conflict unfold. A woman decides to become a vegetarian in a family who savors their meat. Not surprisingly, her family has a hard time understanding her decision to not eat meat. As the story unfolds, it

Big Machine by Victor LaVelle

February 22nd, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Mike|Tags: , |

He grew up in a cult, and now he’s been recruited to join a mysterious paranormal investigation team. Conspiracy underlies the structure of the story, which plays with the fine line between belief and doubt. However, the humor and absurdity is what I enjoyed most. Back to Book

We the Animals by Justin Torres

February 22nd, 2017|Categories: Book Review, Mike|Tags: , |

This is a short, beautifully written coming-of-age story about three rough and tumble boys growing up in a family characterized by intense relationships. The power of this story is well beyond the short 130 pages of the novel. It is well worth the quick read. Back to Book