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The Powell's Playlist | August 6, 2014

Graham Joyce: IMG The Powell’s Playlist: Graham Joyce

The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit is set on the English coast in the hot summer of 1976, so the music in this playlist is pretty much all from the... Continue »
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Jenny Steele has commented on (11) products.

Light Years by James Salter
Light Years

Jenny Steele, August 21, 2007

If Virginia Woolf had been a 1970's American, she might have written a novel like Light Years. The story skims along - cocktail parties, holidays, affairs, triumphs, failures - and then, wham!, a devastating observation about a character or a situation. A very Woolf-like technique, it seems to me. A good, satisfying read.
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(11 of 20 readers found this comment helpful)

Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje

Jenny Steele, June 27, 2007

As with all of Ondaatje's works, this novel too is impossible to describe in a neat and tidy way. A violent event in the characters' young lives shatters them all and sends them on wildly different paths. We are taken from the menacing world of brutal poker to a writer's farmhouse in France. Yes, hard to describe. But, as usual, beautifully written with paragraphs or whole sentences you'll find yourself reading out loud.
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(19 of 32 readers found this comment helpful)

Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper by Harriet Sc Chessman
Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper

Jenny Steele, May 26, 2007

Set in Paris during the height of Impressionism, this thoughtful story is told from the perspective of Mary Cassatt's sickly sister, Lydia. Because of her ill health, Lydia observes life instead of fully participating in it. But her skills of observation are as keen as those of her sister or her sister's mentor, Degas. The novel's scenes subtly reflect the style of Impressionism - emotions of passion and fear are conveyed with the merest brush strokes. A gem of a novel.
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(12 of 23 readers found this comment helpful)

March: A Novel by Geraldine Brooks
March: A Novel

Jenny Steele, April 25, 2007

A darker and deliciously adult companion to Little Women, this novel explores the character of the father of the beloved Jo, Beth, Amy, and Meg. Through half of Alcott's novel, this character is absent, serving as a chaplain to Union troops, but this novel gives us his story. He writes letters to his wife, Marmee, and he tells her what he can - but it's what he can't tell her that is more interesting. You'll want to re-read Little Women directly after reading March (or read it for the first time like me - shame on me!). It's great fun to figure out how these two novels lock together. A fine read.
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(14 of 27 readers found this comment helpful)

Howards End (Modern Library) by E M Forster
Howards End (Modern Library)

Jenny Steele, March 3, 2007

Now and then it is a pleasure to return to a novel you've read a long time ago, perhaps as a dutiful college student in an English Lit class. Howard's End is one of those novels. Have another go at it and rediscover these characters. "Only connect." Remember that? Yes, through a re-read of this novel, you'll connect again. (And this time you won't have to worry about writing an essay to avoid flunking that lit class!).
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(16 of 31 readers found this comment helpful)

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