Friday, December 9, 2022
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Book Reviews

Walden revisited

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It’s a crazy publishing situation, as most publishing situations tend to be these days, and all writers can relate to this: We’re only a phone call (or email or text or strip-o-gram) away from...

A story to dive into

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Kip Robinson Greenthal’s novel “Shoal Water” is a haunting, lyrical gem that tells a story of love — romantic, platonic, and familial — set in a small Nova Scotia fishing community. She opens with...

In the wild

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The title of Rebecca Randall Gilbert’s wonderful book, “Weedy Wisdom for the Curious Forager: Common Wild Plants to Nourish Your Body & Soul,” reflects the nature of her writing, which is filled with her...

Three sisters

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“The Ocean in Winter” by Elizabeth de Veer intermingles the themes of the loving bonds of sisterhood, inherited family trauma, healing, and mystery in her moving and intriguing debut novel. The story opens with a...

‘My Shenandoah’

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The Vineyard seems to attract characters on a mission of one sort or another, and no one exemplifies this better than Robert S. Douglas, whose imprint on Vineyard Haven Harbor, wooden boatbuilding, and sailing...

Community of kindness

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“Badger and Fox and Friends,” by Edward Zlotkowski, is a lovely book for reading to children ages 3 through 5, and for those up to about age 9 who can read it themselves. Both...

Watching a character unravel

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“The Silence in the Sound” is an engaging tale in which complicated love — for an alcoholic father, testy patient, enigmatic lover, and our Island — interweaves to create a compelling narrative. Summer resident Dianne...

An intimate journey

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Francesca Giacco’s exceptional use of language in “Six Days in Rome” creates an immensely nuanced protagonist in Emilia, as we travel with her not just through the streets and piazzas of the ancient city,...

Larger than life

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In a country where the overwhelming majority are descended from immigrants, and where immigration policy has always been a hot-button issue, it's no wonder that the immigrant's story has had lasting appeal. Whether we're...

Diverse works

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The stunning book, “PathwaysArts: New Works” captures artistic moments in time — well, a stretch of time, actually — from just before the pandemic shut down through last spring. The new book abounds in...

Below the surface

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Gregory Mone immerses us in another world — or two worlds really — in “Atlantis: The Brink of War.” It’s actually the collision of the under- and above-water worlds that propel the story forward....

Sustainable and reusable

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Quite honestly, nothing makes me happier when I’m shopping than the cashier asking, “Would you like a bag?” giving me the option of using my own. I was truly eager to read Lisa D....

Love and mystery

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Jean Stone's newest edition in her Vineyard series, “A Vineyard Wedding,” welcomes us back into famous mystery writer and inn owner Annie Sutton’s life with the wry wit of the opening lines: “It was...

Flying high

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“Are You a Bird Like Me?” is a delightful children’s book aimed for pre-K to grade 2. By Noel Foy and Nicholas Roberto, with fabulously appealing illustrations by Colleen Sgroi, this book is about...

Lost time

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Donna Gordon’s beautifully crafted “What Ben Franklin Would Have Told Me” abounds with unusual characters and an engrossing story. We immediately are thrust into the mind of the protagonist Lee, a precocious adolescent suffering...

A new you

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How do you go through life-altering trauma and come out the other side? Michele Neff Hernandez’s book “Different After You: Rediscovering Yourself and Healing after Grief and Trauma” is a beautiful, supportive, and clear...

Life on Chappy

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The tagline to Rob Kagan’s stunningly written memoir “Noah’s Rejects” is “a cautionary tale about life on an island paradise.” And while sometimes laugh-out-loud funny, it is simultaneously deeply provocative about the serious class...

Corruption defined

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Charles Benjamin Schudson’s book, “Independence Corrupted: How America’s Judges Make Their Decisions,” is a far cry from a dry, clinical text, but rather a book that brings us into the heart of the judicial...

Natural-born teacher

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A good teacher gets you thinking as soon as possible, whether in a lecture, seminar, or in person. Good teachers also challenge students, rather than spoon-feed them a smorgasbord of information, then wait for...

A surprise love

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Rose, the protagonist in summer Island resident Elisa M. Speranza’s novel, faces a challenge — well, actually a number of them, which are at the heart of “The Italian Prisoner.” She lives with her Sicilian...