Barb's Picks

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The Jane Austen Project Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9780062651259
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - May 2nd, 2017

I enjoyed the combination of sci fi, historical fiction, and literary exploration.  I was dropped into 1815 and saw it through the eyes of two researchers from the future who love Jane Austen's work.  They've been sent to find and bring back the completed manuscript of "The Watsons" because only part of it has made it to the future.  Flynn's pacing and detailed descriptions echo Austen's style, but there's more humor, philosophical comments, and sex than what you'd expect of Jane Austen.  Actually, Jane and her family are quite different from how critics usually describe them.  The ending was satisfying in its description of what happens in the future because of this expedition.  The romance between the two main characters has a happy ending, but what else would you expect in a Jane Austen novel?  

 


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Underground Fugue Cover Image
$25.99
ISBN: 9781612196282
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Melville House Publishing - April 18th, 2017

Written like a musical fugue with four voices in counterpoint, I enjoyed the beautiful language, narrative structure, and the distinctive voices of characters that I could relate to as they wrestle with grief, aging, identity, and family.  Their stories are seen as back-lit by the  suicide bombing of 3 Metro stations and 1 bus in central London in 2005.  With a satisfying, hopeful, but unsentimental ending, I will recommend this book to book clubs and readers who enjoyed books like Tony Doerr's  All the Light You Cannot See.  


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Fall of Man in Wilmslow: A Novel of Alan Turing Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781101970416
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage Crime/Black Lizard - April 4th, 2017

Was Alan Turing's death n 1954 realy a suicide? Or was he killed to keep him from revealing stae secrets from his classified work during WWII? Detective Corell delves into theoretical mathematics to anqswer tht question.

 


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Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780399588174
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Spiegel & Grau - November 15th, 2016

Each childhood story is introduced by a short history chapter about apartheid in South Africa. Like his mother, Noah uses laughter, mockery, and his speed as a runner to deal with the violence and poverty surroundig him.


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A Robot in the Garden Cover Image
$15.99
ISBN: 9781492631262
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Sourcebooks Landmark - May 10th, 2016

When I needed relief from the darkness of this pas winter, I found this unusual book that left me feeling hopeful. It's also a good book for someone who's recovering from surgery!


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Homegoing Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781101971062
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - May 2nd, 2017

A startling, evocative novel. Having visited Ghana, I found the place descriptions charged wih emotion. The ending leaves some hope so it's not the devastating ending I feared.