These reviews will be briefer than usual being that it has been ages since I’ve read the novels themselves.  So the reviews will be more or less a quick reminiscence of whether I liked the book or not and why.

Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye

This book is a crime novel that takes place in my fair city of New York circa 1840’s when the NYC Police dept. was in its earliest incarnation known as the “copper stars”.  The book follows Timothy Wilde a scarred good guy squeezed into the stars by a politico older brother.  Timothy, a reticent copper, becomes the hero of a waif who runs into him covered in blood.  The novel is wonderful.  Faye has an incredible ear for early NY landscape, history and verbiage.  Furthermore, the novel, much like what I loved about Tana French’s first novel In The Woods is not a typical cop chases psycho killer fare, it’s so much more human.  Great book, highly recommend.  And a cool piece of early NY fact : “The spread of flash talk (slang) to the general population would prove to be a permanent shift in the English language.  When you say “so long” to your “pal” in parting, you are participating in a subversive cultural phenomenon dating back to 1530 and the Derbyshire scoundrels who first developed a secret language all their own.  Soo cool.

Everyday by David Levithan

This was another wonderful book I read awhile ago.  “A” is a … soul?  “A” wakes up the body of another 16year old each and every day.  It could be a girl, could be a boy; could be from a loving home, or a drugged out depressed suicidal loner.  “A” has to navigate these people’s lives for 24 hours each day something new.  “A”‘s been doing it for as long as “A” can remember, sometimes it’s easy others. … not so much.  But what happens when “A” falls in love?  How can “A” hope to express love to someone who will never see the same “A”?  Can it be done, if so how and how much will the two teens be effected?  Such a wonderfully written novel, filled with heart I distinctly remember crying several times.

Breed by Chase Novak

This one was weird.  Breed starts off, again in NYC, with a yuppie couple very much in love.  Novak wants you to like this couple, and you do; they clearly are good people (overall) and do in fact love one another.  They also desperately want a child.  They have had no luck, to the point where going out through central park gets them upset seeing all the happy couples with their charges.  Novak makes wonderful satirical and foreshadowing points of how warped out love of children and parenthood can be; such as the cannibalistic phrase “I could just eat him/her up”; how in the world did this become a positive notion?  and he’s right. lol.   Well this couple can stand it no more and spend an inordinate amount of money to go to a specialist who injects them with something .. animalistic.    Time jump ten years, twins; who think … no … know that their parents want to eat them.  I’ll leave you with that.  It’s twisted and there are some missteps along the way.  Overall though, there is a reason Novak is a pen name and why Novak is an award-winning writer.

Argo by Antonio Mendez

By now you should have heard about the new flick Argo directed by Ben Affleck.  Well this is the book that that movie is based.  I can’t wait to see the movie, it has gotten rave reviews.  The book, it was okay.  Historically the book is fascinating, how it all went down what went into the rescue, but even more interesting was the back story of our history with Iran and how we’ve gotten to where we are today.  The problem really for me came down to lack of excitement.  SPOILER : everything went off w/o a hitch, no problems what so ever.  Even the hostages, between bouts of being scared, they were drinking and having a blast.  END OF SPOILER

It’s understood, factually that they were scared for their lives and were facing certain death every hour  but I never got the sense of this.  All in all I think that the book would be a phenomenal tie in to the movie.  See the movie for the excitement of a great director directing a great cast for a great story, read the book for the facts.

Broken Harbor Tana French  next time, I’m tired.

So long pals

you professor

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