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Original Essays | September 15, 2014

Lois Leveen: IMG Forsooth Me Not: Shakespeare, Juliet, Her Nurse, and a Novel



There's this writer, William Shakespeare. Perhaps you've heard of him. He wrote this play, Romeo and Juliet. Maybe you've heard of it as well. It's... Continue »

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Customer Comments

Katherine Chance has commented on (6) products.

Lord of the Silver Bow (Troy Trilogy) by David Gemmell
Lord of the Silver Bow (Troy Trilogy)

Katherine Chance, January 1, 2012

An excellent retelling of an age old story - the Trojan War. Superbly developed characters and excellent embellishments on the original tail. Action, adventure and romance at its finest, this story is the first of three of a fantastic trilogy.
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On the Beach by Nevil Shute
On the Beach

Katherine Chance, March 13, 2011

Before there was "The Stand" or "Swan Song" or pretty much any other apocalyptic drama, there was "On the Beach" by Nevil Shute. Set near Melboure, Australia in the 1950s, the novel follows the life to two couples as they come to grips with the world post-nuclear war and the on-rushing radioactive fallout, which spells the end for all living creatures on earth. From an emotional stand point, this novel is almost too real to bear reading. How would you face the end with your young wife and new born daughter? What would you choose to do in your final days? Thoroughly thought provoking. I will not soon forget it.
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Shogun: A Novel of Japan by James Clavell
Shogun: A Novel of Japan

Katherine Chance, February 25, 2011

Have you ever had a book that sat on your shelf for years? One that a friend recommended because it was “so good, just what you like”? A book your finally get around to reading only to find it’s not just good, but wonderfully good and you wish you’d read it years earlier? Well, for me that book is “Shogun: A Novel of Japan” by James Clavell. Daunted by the books impressive girth (over 1200 pages in paperback), I kept passing it over to read other novels in my pile but I had to make a transatlantic flight to Denmark and back a few weeks ago and thought perhaps this would be the time to take a stab at the novel. Wow! I was enthralled from the first chapter. Simply a masterpiece.

Set in 16th century Japan, this non-stop intrigue adventure story centers around English sailor, John Blackthorne, who finds himself ship-wrecked off the shores of the nearly undiscovered county of Japan. To survive, he must quickly master the tumultuous landscape of a country facing civil and religious wars, adapt to a culture that could not be more alien to him and somehow learn the way of the samurai – all before he is deemed a useless barbarian and executed.

As if that is not enough, the plot is layer upon layer of politics, war, love, honor and religion. Each and every character depicted is deep and sophisticated - whether good or evil. The landscapes are exotic, interesting and enlightening. Having known virtually nothing of pre-modern Japan, I gained huge understanding about the history of the great country’s culture and its people.

If you’re looking for a book that can make a 12-hour plane ride pass quickly (honest truth) and if you’re a fan of epic tomes such as the likes of Michener’s “Alaska” or McMurtry’s “Lonesome Dove” then this book, “Shogun”, will not disappoint.
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Killing Floor by Lee Child
Killing Floor

Katherine Chance, February 16, 2011

Nothing is better than finding a new author and a new series. I am now in love with do-it-all, know-it-all, ass-kicking complicated hero, Jack Reacher. Based on a recommendation from a fellow book lover, I picked up “Killing Floor” by Lee Childs. Being a fan of reading book series in order, I started with this novel as it is the first focusing on ex-military police officer, Reacher.

Aside from introducing us to a new first-class leading man, the story itself is a twisted, clever mystery adventure set in a sleepy small southern town. Included in the suspense is a cast of well crafted supporting characters. A clever, star-crossed romantic angle is the icing on the cake.

If you’re a fan of novels driven by strong heroes in the vein of Lucas Davenport and Bobby Lee Swagger, “Killing Floor” will not disappoint.
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(2 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)



The Passage by Justin Cronin
The Passage

Katherine Chance, January 7, 2011

I admit, I love post-apocalyptic fiction and anything in that vein gets a high rating from me. This novel however is one of the best I’ve read in quite awhile. It is complex, jumping from near future world-meltdown (with yet another spin on African viruses and “vampires”) to later impacts on a decimated humanity. Pleasantly unpredictable with an unexpected message of hope throughout what is very grim subject matter. If you are like me and enjoy the great “what-ifs” and don’t mind a little scariness in your literature, this book will not disappoint you.
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