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Customer Comments

Rachel Coker has commented on (65) products.

Olive Kitteridge: Fiction by Elizabeth Strout
Olive Kitteridge: Fiction

Rachel Coker, November 12, 2014

"Olive Kitteridge" isn't a fun, feel-good book. Its heroine, Olive, is a prickly, depressed, brutally honest, introverted woman who also happens to be smart, perceptive and, in her own way, desperate for human connection. The novel moves seamlessly through time and among people in the little community on the coast of Maine where Olive lives. I found the novel similar to Edgar Lee Masters' "Spoon River Anthology" in the way that the reader gets to know characters better by seeing them from multiple perspectives. If you've ever doubted yourself, hesitated on the edge of a party, committed some small act of meanness, wondered if your family is as crazy as it seems or yearned for a deeper love, you may find yourself among the residents of Crosby.
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Sense & Sensibility by Joanna Trollope
Sense & Sensibility

Rachel Coker, October 31, 2014

A modern retelling of Jane Austen's "Sense and Sensibility?" Yes, please! Joanna Trollope does an excellent job of bringing the Dashwood girls' plight and ultimate triumph into the world of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. The villains are just as dastardly, the houses just as grand and the women just as obsessed with marriage and money as ever. It's light and frothy and fun, just as the original must have been a hundred years ago. This book is part of a project to update all of Austen's novels, and I'm eagerly awaiting the arrival of "Emma" as retold by Alexander McCall Smith this fall.
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The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
The Language of Flowers

Rachel Coker, October 26, 2014

This is a challenging book with a protagonist who initially is difficult to like. But if you stick with it, you will find a novel that has a lot to say about self-love, motherhood, forgiveness and growing up. Along the way, you will also learn a bit about the Victorian-era language of flowers and about foster children. Highly recommended.
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The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
The Language of Flowers

Rachel Coker, October 26, 2014

This is a challenging book with a protagonist who initially is difficult to like. But if you stick with it, you will find a novel that has a lot to say about self-love, motherhood, forgiveness and growing up. Along the way, you will also learn a bit about the Victorian-era language of flowers and about foster children. Highly recommended.
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Fortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman and Skottie Young
Fortunately, the Milk

Rachel Coker, October 6, 2014

Such fun! Neil Gaiman gives us a harried father who spins a crazy tale featuring volcanoes, pirates and a time-traveling dinosaur. The ending, believe it or not, may remind you of "The Usual Suspects." This is a wonderful read-aloud book with kids, something beyond a 10-minute picture book but not the same time commitment as "The Secret Garden" and other big classics. We wrapped it up in three nights, and my 7- and 10-year-olds were entirely delighted.
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