Wednesday, March 21, 2012

the hits just keep coming....

Shadows in Flight by Orson Scott Card
Publishers Weekly
Card’s fifth novel narrated by Julian “Bean” Delphiki (after Shadow of the Giant) mingles transcendent strangeness and didacticism. On a spaceship cut off from the rest of civilization, Julian is raising his three remarkable children, doomed to die young by the engineered genes that also make them inhumanly brilliant. Triplets Cincinnatus, Carlotta, and Ender (named for Bean’s old classmate) are only six years old and already smarter than nearly any adult, but just as emotionally immature as any children. Bean tries setting them up as an incestuously reproducing super-race who will be parents at age eight and dead at 22, but when an unidentified alien ship appears, the children eagerly embrace a less depressing way to prove themselves. Bean’s endless lectures make him appear a mouthpiece for the author; his children’s snarky resentment of being talked down to will similarly ring true for readers.


Being George Washington: The Indispensable Man, As You've Never Seen Him By Glenn Beck
From the Publisher –
IF YOU THINK YOU KNOW GEORGE WASHINGTON, THINK AGAIN.
This is the amazing true story of a real-life superhero who wore no cape and possessed no special powers—yet changed the world forever. It’s a story about a man whose life reads as if it were torn from the pages of an action novel: Bullet holes through his clothing. Horses shot out from under him. Unimaginable hardship. Disease. Heroism. Spies and double-agents. And, of course, the unmistakable hand of Divine Providence that guided it all.
Being George Washington is a whole new way to look at history. You won’t simply read about the awful winter spent at Valley Forge—you’ll live it right alongside Washington. You’ll be on the boat with him crossing the Delaware, in the trenches with him at Yorktown, and standing next to him at the Constitutional Convention as a new republic is finally born.
Through these stories you’ll not only learn our real history (and how it applies to today), you’ll also see how the media and others have distorted our view of it. It’s ironic that the best-known fact about George Washington—that he chopped down a cherry tree—is a complete lie. It’s even more ironic when you consider that a lie was thought necessary to prove he could not tell one.
For all of his heroism and triumphs, Washington’s single greatest accomplishment was the man he created in the process: courageous and principled, fair and just, respectful to all. But he was also something else: flawed.
It’s those flaws that should give us hope for today. After all, if Washington had been perfect, then there would be no way to build another one. That’s why this book is not just about being George Washington in 1776, it’s about the struggle to be him every single day of our lives. Understanding the way he turned himself from an uneducated farmer into the Indispensable (yet imperfect) Man, is the only way to build a new generation of George Washingtons that can take on the extraordinary challenges that America is once again facing.
Dead by Nightfall by Beverly Barton
Library Journal
Malcolm York, sadistic, depraved, and noted for his bizarre, murderous hunts, is finally dead. So is villain Anthony Linden. But then Griffin Powell's wife, Nicole, is kidnapped, her bodyguard is blown away, and the taunts begin. Now, Griff is no longer sure. As his search for Nic zeros in on the target, it soon becomes clear that participating in one of York's insane hunts is his only chance to keep Nic safe. VERDICT With swift, relentless intensity, Barton ups the fear to a fever pitch as the final game is played in this chilling trilogy (Dead by ; Dead by Morning). After keeping readers on the edge, it delivers, at last, with satisfying, brutal finality. Sadly, Barton died in April.


Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch by Sally Bedell Smith
Publishers Weekly
In her 60-year-reign, Elizabeth II has evolved “from beautiful ingénue to businesslike working mother to wise grandmother,” whose grave public persona conceals her spirit, intelligence, humor, and joie de vivre. In a respectful, engrossing, and perceptive portrayal, Smith (Diana in Search of Herself: Portrait of a Troubled Princess) relates that Elizabeth defied her mother in marrying her cheeky third-cousin Prince Philip of Greece, but she bowed to Churchill in not adopting Philip’s surname, which strained their marriage; while her laissez-faire attitude toward child-rearing allowed a flinty, critical Philip to dominate the sensitive Charles. Her compassion in shaking hands with cured Nigerian lepers in 1956 prefigured Diana’s handshake with an AIDS patient in 1987. But while some of the inner workings of the monarchy are exposed, Smith often pulls her punches; the queen’s passion for her dogs and horses gets more ink than daughters-in-law Camilla and Sophie, and the monarch remains distant, her thoughts and feelings ultimately unknowable. 


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