Here are this week’s reviews from the members of the Adult Summer Reading Club:
Daddy’s Gone a Hunting by Mary Higgins Clark
A family owned antique business and museum is blown to bits in the middle of the night. Two bodies are found in the rubble – the owner’s daughter and a disgruntled employee. The daughter is in a comma and the retired employee is dead. Was the explosion set by them????? Also found on the site is the remains of a girl who has been missing for 28 years…Too many characters in this story…
Girl with the Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
This was the most beautifully written story I have read in a long time. A blend of history and fiction. A coming of age story told by a 16-year-old girl named Griet in 17th century Delft, Holland. It begins in 1664, when Griet must take a job as a maid to help support the family after her father becomes blind. Her master is the real artist Vermeer.
Home to Woefield by Susan Juby
I was initially entertained by this book which follows Prudence, a young eco-friendly Brooklynite, inheriting a neglected and about to be foreclosed farm from her uncle in Canada. Misadventures ensue as Prudence becomes surrounded by a bunch of misfits and tries to save the farm. Skip this read if you are easily offended by a lot of swearing. Rating: 3
I’m a Stranger Here Myself by Bill Bryson
Bryson returns to America after living in Britain for twenty years, and discusses his likes and dislikes of America and compares it to Britain. Hilariously.
The Johnstown Flood by David McCullough
This book describes the events of May 31, 1889 when the dam above Johnstown, PA broke and approximately 2,200 people were killed. I first learned about this disaster from a cable TV program years ago, and wanted to learn more about it. This book is very well-written and interesting. I though the subject would be morose and depressing but the author puts in a great deal of historical detail that it was actually an enjoyable read.
Joyland by Stephen King
This book is the latest by one of my favorite authors. The story is from the point-of-view of a 21-year-old man in the year 1973 when he was working the summer in an amusement park. There is very little supernatural elements, but it is a nice, touching story. I cried at the sad ending!
Odd Hours by Dean Koontz
I have really enjoyed reading the “Odd Thomas” series of books by Dean Koontz. This book is just as riveting, fast-paced, and witty as the others. In Odd Hours, the main character, Odd (that’s his first name) saves the U.S. from a nuclear terrorist attack. A lot happens in this book, but a lot of supernatural things are left vague and unexplained. Otherwise, I would have given the book a rating of 5.
Picnic, Lightning by Billy Collins
A collection of poetry by one of my favorite poets: Billy Collins. Thoroughly enjoyed “Snow”, “Moon”, “Victoria’s Secret”, and “Taking Off Emily Dickinson’s Clothes”.
Under the Dome by Stephen King
Stephen King does it again. He gives you a story (1000 pages!) that you wish was twice as long. Rating: 4
Unknown Pleasures: Inside Joy Division by Peter Hook
The inside story and behind the scenes look of Joy Division (an English band in the ‘70s) from the viewpoint of the bass player. I enjoyed hearing how the band formed and developed their sound, as well as reading about all of the off stage hijinks. This probably would have been a better audiobook since it reads like a conversation. Rating: 4