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Nancy S has commented on (10) products.

The Last Days of Dogtown by Anita Diamant
The Last Days of Dogtown

Nancy S, March 21, 2015

Set in the early 1800's, Anita Diamant's terrific historical novel tells the story of the last residents left in a Massachusetts town. Poverty, dangerous secrets, and just plain stubbornness holds the tiny community together. Most compelling are the women of Dogtown who cling to their independence despite the harsh environment. I particularly enjoyed the way the author slowly reveals the history and heart of each of the characters. It was satisfying to this reader as questions were answered patiently and completely during the course of the novel.
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The Wind Is Not a River by Brian Payton
The Wind Is Not a River

Nancy S, November 15, 2014

Stayed up late last night to finish "The Wind Is Not a River" because I could not stop turning the pages. The historical context is fascinating as it takes place on the Aleutian Islands during WWII. The extent to which the native Aleuts were victimized by both the Japanese and Americans is a part of US history I was unfamiliar with. The heart of this novel, however, is a love story that is both beautiful and harrowing. A journalist and his wife are separated by the war and as he fights to survive, she fights to find him.
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Southern Cross the Dog by Bill Cheng
Southern Cross the Dog

Nancy S, July 12, 2014

Southern Cross the Dog is a novel about loss. Within it - the destructive forces of nature, the cruelty of others and all the savage ways we harm ourselves unite - to rob the characters (and us) of life and happiness. The story is dark; the prose is lush and complex. The novel is ultimately transcendent as the reader is compelled to recognize how each of us live lives that are just a little dog crossed.
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Little Wolves by Thomas Maltman
Little Wolves

Nancy S, April 9, 2014

Using myths and legends as framework, Little Wolves examines themes like: the oppressive nature of small towns, inter-generational tragedy, and the quest for self-knowledge. The characters are richly and realistically drawn but then, in an instant, can assume almost mythic dimensions. If you need a book with all the ends tied up neatly, you may not be satisfied with Little Wolves. But if you are drawn to mysteries within mysteries, especially those dark mysteries of the heart, then this is the book for you
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(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)

The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan
The Panopticon

Nancy S, August 6, 2013

The Panopticon should be required reading for anyone working with children and youth. The protagonist, Anais, had committed a number of petty offenses (and possibly one serious crime) while living in foster care, group juvenile facilities, and on the streets. She entered the Panopticon awaiting conviction and incarceration. What stuck me was, how do you punish a teenager who has experienced such neglect, violence and abuse? Her life had been hell, what power did the state have to hurt her? The novel presents a challenge for the reader; get past the language, the drug use, the violence and discover the strange and wonderful child waiting inside. The Panopticon (where they can observe you all the time) lacked the ability to reveal Anais' humanity. So Jenni Fagan in her terrific book made us see. If the ending seemed a little unreasonably happy, that was okay with me - and Anais certainly deserved it.
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