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WongKaiWen has commented on (35) products.

The Twelve Clues of Christmas (A Royal Spyness Mystery) by Rhys Bowen
The Twelve Clues of Christmas (A Royal Spyness Mystery)

WongKaiWen, December 25, 2012

Since Its Christmas, I just couldn't resist the new Rhys Bowen book, The Twelve Clues of Christmas. This is a rather clever installment in the Royal Spyness series. Georgie is back and desperate to find a better place to spend Christmas than with her tight-fisted disapproving sister-in-law. Fortunately, she comes across an ad requesting a lady to help assist in hosting a Christmas party. Unfortunately, once she gets to the charming little town people start dying at the alarming rate of one per day. Of course the book isn't complete without Darcy, her mom and the always entertaining Queenie. This was a very fun way to spend a couple of hours and to kickoff the holiday season
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Far from the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity by Andrew Solomon
Far from the Tree: Parents, Children and the Search for Identity

WongKaiWen, December 25, 2012

When i picked up this massive book, I thought it would take me weeks maybe months to finish, as I'd planned to dip into it now and then between other books with more linear structure. And now I find myself 3 days later having not been able to put it down. Reading in one stretch -- as one chapter lead to another and the histories brought these cases to life. One reason is Andrew Solomon's obvious empathy for his subjects. Having grown up knowing he was gay, Solomon shared a sense of feeling marginalized from an early age. He spent ten years researching and getting to know the families of special children, establishing relationships that in some cases spanned that entire time. This book is beautifully written in clear prose, and even the more technical material is clear for the lay reader. Definitely worth the time, worth the effort
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Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version by Philip Pullman
Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm: A New English Version

WongKaiWen, December 25, 2012

This book is a beautiful collection of fairy tales, from the standards to the oft forgotten. I enjoyed seeing the familiar tropes repeated time and time again: the sets of three, the clever tailors, the shape changers and sheep herders, the princes in disguise, and the happily ever afters. Pullman breaks down each story, alerting to what he has cleaned up, and sharing similar stories from other collections of tales, which gives the reader context as well as enjoyment.
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(2 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)

Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers by Anne Lamott
Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers

WongKaiWen, December 25, 2012

Do you like Anne Lamott's writing? I do, I've read every single thing she's ever written. She is probably the greatest influence on what and how I write; she gives voice to her petty struggling self and I try to do that too, because I secretly know that even you are petty, though no one would ever know that about you, so you are stuck all alone knowing that unless other people 'fess up. I love that about her. When I've been unable to read, at various times in my life, I've always found my way back to reading, and to life, through her books.
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The Black Box by Michael Connelly
The Black Box

WongKaiWen, December 25, 2012

Connelly has fashioned a seamless but intricate puzzle of a book, and it hits the right notes consistently. From that tiny thread of evidence, he weaves a consistently intriguing tapestry of character, narrative and observation. At first glance, the book is a classic procedural, but Connelly's gift as a storyteller (if you like his work, you'll inhale this in a few big, deep draughts--and be sorry when it's over) enables "The Black Box" to transcend the notion of a genre novel. It is unmistakably great and undeniably compelling. It is also written with a dark and poetic sensibility, which will be familiar to Connelly's fans but seems to me even more distinctive and powerful in this book. Highly recommended.
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