“What makes a person a person? What combination of memory, history, imagination, experience, subjectivity, genetic substance, and that ineffable thing called the soul makes us who we are?” It’s a simple thing, really. You spit into a vial, send it off to a lab and in a few months get results that help deepen your genetic ties to the world. […]
Lynn Alexander discusses Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter in her column, Book Remarks.
Lynn Alexander reviews Vox by Christina Dalcher in her column Book Remarks.
“Unsheltered, I live in daylight. And like the wandering bird I rest in thee.” Neither Willa Knox nor Thatcher Greenwood are resting easily in the house that binds them in Barbara Kingsolver’s “Unsheltered,” a novel that follows the paths of these two families from two different time periods. The Knox family is our voice in the present while the Greenwood […]
“Oh, the pathos of it! – haggard, drawn into fixed lines of unutterable sadness, with a look of loneliness, as of a soul whose depth of sorrow and bitterness no human sympathy could ever reach. The impression I carried away was that I had seen, not so much the President of the United States, as the saddest man in the […]
“If there is nothing else to learn from history, it’s that from humans to animals, from the most primitive to the most civilized, most individuals want to be led. Take out the leader, and the rest of the pack panics.” As I’ve mentioned before in this column, mystery/thriller novels are not my first pick of reading material. But since I […]
“Isn’t it queer? There are only two or three human stories, and they go on repeating themselves as fiercely as if they have never happened before; like the larks in this country, that have been singing the same five notes over for thousands of years.” I have read quite a few new releases and wanted to revisit my “classic reading […]
“Hands on a clock, numbers on a bathroom scale, weren’t they only ways of trying to measure invisible forces that had visible effects? A feeble effort to corral some greater reality beyond what mere humans thought of as reality?” “Elevation” by Stephen King doesn’t necessarily try to answer this weighty philosophical question but it is an interesting thought to consider […]
“But Willa knew what she meant. She had felt that way during her own childhood; she’d felt like a watchful, wary adult housed in a little girl’s body. And yet nowadays, paradoxically, it often seemed to her that from behind her adult face a child about eleven years old was still gazing out at the world.” “Clock Dance” by Anne […]
“People always said they wanted the truth, but really they were perfectly content with a facsimile.” Truths are well hidden in Kate Atkinson’s latest novel, “Transcription,” a winding tale of espionage and counter-espionage during World War II. Juliet Armstrong is an 18-year-old file clerk who is reluctantly recruited into the world of spying by the British Security Service, or MI5, […]