Category Archives: Book and film reviews

Pale Horse, Pale Rider by Katherine Anne Porter

The three novellas that comprise Pale Horse, Pale Rider by Katherine Anne Porter were the perfect read after the two longer pandemic novels (Severance and Station Eleven). They go back to Willa Cather subject matter: the hardscrabble ordinary lives of … Continue reading

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Severance by Ling Ma

If you are looking for a pandemic novel that explores precocious post-college five years in New York City (think how many novels there are that do that!) that culminate in pandemic, this is the one for you. Excellent writing, lots … Continue reading

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Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

A challenging, brilliant novel to read during COVID19 pandemic. The opening chapter so uncanny in May 2020. Lots of technique and a good solid story. Maybe a few quibbles about consistency in some of the characters (Clark, for me, was … Continue reading

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Ammonite by Nicola Griffith

I enjoy Ursula LeGuin-Doris Lessing-style “anthropologist science fiction” and Ammonite by Nicola Griffith fit the bill very nicely. Sharp anthropology about slowly understanding important relationships and concepts. A nice female-only world, and good discussion of reproduction. The soldier Danner character … Continue reading

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Oryx and Crake, by Margaret Atwood, a perfect pandemic novel

I would definitely recommend Oryx and Crake, by Margaret Atwood. Towards the end of the book, as the pandemic is recalled by Snowman, in two pages she summarize the current global experience.  Atwood’s a little heavy-handed, and you don’t go … Continue reading

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Reading Los Cuatro Viajes Del Almirante Y Su Testamento: Cristóbal Colón

Reading a few dozen pages every day of Los Cuatro Viajes Del Almirante Y Su Testamento: Cristóbal Colón. Lots of Leste, noreste, sudoeste, but in between the thrilling story of a about 90 sailors spending months at sea, then trying … Continue reading

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George Saunders “Love Letter” in The New Yorker

George Saunders “Love Letter” in The New Yorker.  At three pages, one of the best pieces of topical writing I have seen. Great craft, perfect tone. A letter from a grandparent to a grandson. Harking back to a long tradition. … Continue reading

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