In this literary but unpretentious book, Makkai has created a juicy and moving story of art and love and the luck it takes for either to last.
Seiffert’s last leg is perhaps a stretch too far that ekes out more of the same and tells us nothing new. Indeed, for some readers the entire book may feel like too great a distance to cover...However, Seiffert’s tragedy grips while it disturbs and its emotional punch makes it worth persevering until her bitter end.
It's understandable that the publishers of the Zhivago Affair are stressing the CIA's covert operation; but this is mainly a book about a brilliant, complicated and ultimately, very brave writer.
Owen’s sentence-by-sentence prose is extraordinarily polished—a noteworthy feat for a 500-page debut—and she packs many surprises into her tale, making it a book for readers to lose themselves in.
Birmingham helps his own readers see how an enlightened society came to the realization that the only fitting response to a work of art like Ulysses is..."Yes."
As always, Furst is a master of atmosphere, re-creating those prewar days so vividly we can almost imagine that we, like the characters, operate in the dark at midnight, unaware of what happens next...
While the love triangle sections do turn pages...King’s immersive prose takes center stage. The fascinating descriptions of tribal customs and rituals, paired with snippets of Nell’s journals...all contribute to a thrilling read that, at its end, does indeed feel like “the briefest, purest euphoria.”
Foulds writes like no one else; while individual scenes are rendered with poetic simplicity, they fit together into an elliptical, complex plot readers will puzzle over long after finishing this novel.
Slava knows that to make his stories convincing he has to get the details right, and...he provides more than enough correct details and well crafted figurative turns of phrase to convince most readers to go along with him...
Unsurprising but perfectly competent and seamlessly of a piece with her Living History (2003). And will Hillary run? The guiding metaphor of the book is the relay race, and there’s a sense that if the torch is handed to her, well….
“Gottland” offers an indelible account of the ravages of 20th-century totalitarianism and the way it continues to pollute human thought and behavior in the 21st century.
“The Good Spy” provides a fresh and grainy view of the rise of organizations like Hezbollah, and of figures like Osama bin Laden. It allows us to meet in Ames a quiet but strong personality, a man whose fundamental decency allowed him to see both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict clearly.
Osnos combines scintillating reportage with an eye for telling ironies that illuminate broader trends; without downplaying the uniqueness of Chinese society, he makes its tensions feel achingly familiar for Western readers.
Will history see Geithner as a great Treasury secretary? That is uncertain. He was certainly effective. But too much of this otherwise self-deprecating memoir is self-defence.
This novel, by an outstanding historian, is a gripping, intelligent story. The author adds some historical / facts vs. fiction notes at the end which are always welcomed and, in my eyes, add an extra dimension to any historical novel.
What’s unexpected about its impact is that the novel does not regard Europeans’ wartime experience in a new way. Instead, Mr. Doerr’s nuanced approach concentrates on the choices his characters make and on the souls that have been lost, both living and dead.
Cheney conclusively demonstrates through the historical record that Madison, in word and deed, was a primary figure in shaping early American development and successfully establishes “a deeper understanding of the man who did more than any other to conceive and establish the nation we know.”
In its blunt method and clumsy misdirection, “The Confabulist” fails to nurture this interaction of minds — the only real magic there is.
It is written with a redeeming artistry...It manages, with the lightest of touches, to be a politically adroit sketch of Ireland and of colonial Africa in the last century...Yet, in the end, this rare and heart-breaking novel's subject is not drink at all – it is erring, selfish, enduring love.
While the author may digress occasionally, readers will relish his writing and devotion to nature and likely won’t begrudge him a bit of family history here and there. A beautifully written memoir/travelogue with readable diversions into philosophy.