Robin’s August Book Reviews

IMG_1006The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka. Otsuka was the community book author this year for her book, When the Empire was Divine, so I decided to read this book as well. I like the clever way it is written, first person plural, with many lists. I imagine it must have been quite a task to come up with so many variations of the lives of the Japanese picture brides and what their lives were like when they came to California. Rate: 4.8

Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters. This is the tale of Amelia Peabody, a spinster who is the product of the Victorian age, as she embarks on a journey through Egypt. A bit genre, there is love, mystery and a taste of women’s rights. A nice relaxing read, with some education about Egyptian ruins thrown in. Rate: 3.5

A Free Man of Color by Barbara Hambly. This was in a bag of books that has been sitting around for a bit, I don’t know who gave them to me. The description of the story—1833, Mardi Gras, New Orleans, the hero is Benjamin January, a piano player who rescues a creole—all sounded good. But as I started reading the book was so confusing and so many people with very similar names were introduced I never made it past page 100. A book has to prove itself to me by then or I don’t finish it. Sorry. Maybe somebody liked this one, or they wouldn’t have passed it along, but I cannot give it any stars.

Remember the Ladies by Gina L. Mulligan. I met Mulligan at a book signing for Mary Volmer. It was one of those great meetings as we had a lot in common. We swapped books. This is a novel of the Women’s Suffrage movement. We travel quickly through Amelia Cooke’s childhood, just enough to get a sense of how she became a lobbyist. There is a lot of history in the book and the tension builds as Amelia discovers who the world of politics operates below the surface. A fun read. Rate: 4.0

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