Book Remarks

‘The Nest’

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “Insanity runs in my life. It practically gallops.”      ~ Cary Grant as Mortimer Brewster, “Arsenic and Old Lace.” I thought that the title, “The Nest,” referred to the family home in this novel, but in fact it is their term for the nest egg that their father set up for them. They themselves shortened ... Read More »

This Was Not The Plan

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?” ~ Satchel Paige This is the story of an overworked, over-ambitious, 30-something New York attorney who becomes a widower with a toddler son. When we meet him, his wife Mira has been deceased for over two years but Charlie Goldwyn is still spending days ... Read More »

The Trespasser

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “Of all the things which man can do or make here below, by far the most momentous, wonderful, and worthy are the things we call books.” ~ Thomas Carlyle Mystery, suspense and police thriller readers, rejoice! This book is a rare delight – you will absolutely love every scrumptious word of the 464 pages. Stephen King ... Read More »

Best. State. Ever. A Florida Man Defends His Homeland

Best. State. Ever. A Florida Man
Defends His Homeland
By Dave Barry
G.P. Putnam’s Sons - September 2016,
240 pages
Genre: Florida – Humor
Collier County Public Library: Yes

BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust I have been a fan of Dave Barry’s humor for most of the 25 years that he has been writing columns, so I was anticipating a great read. He starts out with a strong first chapter, in which he takes on the State of Illinois and their penchant for electing governors who end up in prison. This ... Read More »

A Man Called Ove

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust “Ove is fifty-nine. He drives a Saab.” Knowing his age is an important point in any man’s story. In Ove’s case, knowing that he drives and has always driven a Saab is essential in understanding him. One’s choice of vehicle reveals much about one’s character, in Ove’s mind. He evaluates others based upon their vehicle brand. When ... Read More »

French Rhapsody

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust “Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.”  ~ Mason Cooley It has been a long while since I laughed out loud so many times while reading a book. “French Rhapsody” is the title that had my endorphins dancing a jig. A middle-aged married Parisian doctor who has been disillusioned about ... Read More »

Everything We Keep

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust This is an engaging read for an afternoon or evening of escapism. Kerry Lonsdale is a relatively new writer, with a straight forward style. She has a knack for character description that draws the reader into the story almost immediately. I knew I was going to like Aimee Tierney and her parents by page three of this ... Read More »

Frontier Grit The Unlikely True Stories of Daring Pioneer Women

Frontier Grit: The Unlikely True Stories of
Daring Pioneer Women
by Marianne Monson
Shadow Mountain,
September 6. 2016, 208 pages
Genre: Nonfiction
Collier County Public Library: No

BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust This little nugget is a delightful find and carries quite a punch for a small book. The stories of 12 fascinating women will captivate you while exposing you to the history they did not teach us in school. The author purposefully chose 12 women of different nationalities, ethnic backgrounds, and socioeconomic status, to illustrate the diversity of ... Read More »

Runaway

“Runaway”
by Peter May
Quercus 2016 – 327 pages
Genre: Mystery
Collier County Public Library: Yes

BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust This book is a must-read for any mystery lover, Anglophile, or Baby Boomer. In addition to having an exciting storyline, it is beautifully written with luscious language: “Moonlight cascaded across black water below us as we drove down into a larger town beyond the village of Threlkeld. Its street lamps twinkled in the night, light pollution masking ... Read More »

Everybody’s Fool

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BOOK REMARKS  Diane Bostick Guest Reviewer Everybody’s Fool By Richard Russo Knopf Publishers, May 2016 Available at the Collier County Library Available as Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle, Nook and Audio book I have just had the pleasure, and a pleasure it was, of reading Richard Russo’s newest book, “Everybody’s Fool.” Some might say it has no plot but it actually does, though I ... Read More »

The Girl Who Wrote in Silk

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BOOK REMARKS  Joanne Tailele,  Guest Reviewer Author Kelli Estes opened my eyes, as well as protagonist Inara Erickson’s, to a piece of American history I knew nothing about. In the backdrop of the Orcas Island, on Puget Sound, state of Washington, Inara is drawn back to the island when she inherits a grand old estate that was once her childhood playground. ... Read More »

Washington’s Immortals

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” – Thomas Paine, “The Crisis,” December 23, 1776. Don’t let the genre dissuade you ... Read More »

Since She Went Away

Since She Went Away
By David Bell
New American Library –
June 21, 2016 - 432 pages
Genre: Mystery/Suspense
4.0/5.0 stars

BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com Bell is an accomplished storyteller who is equally adept at both character development and plot advancement. I first read his “Someone I Used To Know” last year and was riveted by the nuances of his characters’ personalities. The same is true of “Since She Went Away.” I was invested in these characters by the end of ... Read More »

Charlie Mike: A True Story of Heroes Who Brought Their Mission Home

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com Charlie Mike:  A True Story of Heroes Who Brought Their Mission Home By Joe Klein Simon & Schuster, October 2015 – 320 pages Genre: Biography Collier County Public Library: Yes “Charlie Mike” is not the name of any person, but military shorthand for “continue the mission.” This is the story of some veterans from America’s 21st ... Read More »

Lilac Girls

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “Cruelty, like every other vice, requires no motive outside of itself; it only requires opportunity.” – George Eliot This is the story of a little known chapter in the European theater of the Second World War, the “Ravensbruck Rabbits.” The story is told in first person via three main characters: Caroline Ferriday, wealthy American socialite; Kasia, ... Read More »

Miller’s Valley

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BOOK REMARKS  Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “There is nothing I value more than the closeness of friends and family, a smile as I pass someone on the street.”  Willie Stargell I enjoyed this book. Mary Margaret Miller narrates her story which is centered around the state’s decision to permanently flood the farmland of Miller’s Valley. During the time since the government built ... Read More »

The Assassin’s Honor

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BOOKREMARKS  Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com The Assassin’s Honor By Robert Macomber Pineapple Press, September 2015,  351 pages Genre: Historical Fiction Collier County Public Library: Yes “We of the sea come to know each other quickly; our loves, like our hates, are born of sudden danger.” – Lew Wallace, author of “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ” and U.S. Civil War general. ... Read More »

Eligible: A Modern Retelling of Pride and Prejudice

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com “No two persons ever read the same book.” – Edmund Wilson The good news is that “Eligible” is not one of the “Gone Girl” or “The Girl On The Train” wannabes that are pervasive these days. The other news is that while it is a satisfying read, it is not even a shadow of Jane Austen’s ... Read More »

Forty Martyrs

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com   Forty Martyrs  By Philip F. Deaver Burrow Press, March 29, 2016 – 231 pages Genre: Short story collection Collier County Library: No Deaver is a new-to-me author and a pleasant discovery. He is on the English faculty at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. His previous publications have received acclaim and awards. This collection of ... Read More »

Try Not To Breathe

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BOOK REMARKS Maggie Gust winetaster13@gmail.com   Try Not To Breathe By Holly Seddon Ballantine Books, February 2016 – 369 pages Genre: Mystery/Thriller   Anyone who enjoyed “The Girl On The Train” might like this book very much. I didn’t care for the Hawkins book, but I found this one intriguing. The protagonist, Alex Dale, is a self-destructive barely functional alcoholic ... Read More »