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Reviews Written by
R. Platten "rsvpdock" (Philadelphia, PA USA)
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Eat Cake: A Novel
Eat Cake: A Novel
by Jeanne Ray
Edition: Hardcover
34 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Mid-Life Trials and Romance, Nov. 11 2003
This review is from: Eat Cake: A Novel (Hardcover)
This is a charming little book that shows how a woman copes by baking cakes. In fact, the "safe" place she goes in her mind when under stress is inside a nice warm cake. Ha! The plot is fairly predictable, but it's a nice little story about coping with middle-age and family life. The characters are all lovingly flawed, although exceptional human beings. It's a fun read.

The Da Vinci Code: A Novel
The Da Vinci Code: A Novel
by Dan Brown
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 20.69
471 used & new from CDN$ 0.22

3.0 out of 5 stars Intricate Mystery, Nov. 11 2003
I was disappointed after all the hype. This seemed like a Robert Ludlum type of layered plot. It had some good mystery, and some exciting escape sequences as the hero and heroine connected and tried to evade capture while figuring out the mystery. However, it all seemed so contrived to me that I had a hard time accepting it, especially the religious underpinnings. If you aren't too critical, you might enjoy the adventure, the romance, and the mystery.

The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother
The Color of Water: A Black Man's Tribute to His White Mother
by James McBride
Edition: Paperback
117 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars A Touching Multi- Racial Biography, Oct. 22 2003
This is a powerful story about the hardships of a white woman who is rejected by her own clan, but who marries a black man and tries to fit in with the Black culture. Everyone is flawed, but the emotional connections run ever so deep because of that. An inspirational story that serves as a reminder that we all share the human condition.

Williwaw!
Williwaw!
by Tom Bodett
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 7.99
61 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Teen Adventure in Alaska, Oct. 22 2003
This review is from: Williwaw! (Paperback)
This is a strong message book - with the message being that even teenagers have to have moral character and live or die by their word. It's a story that is timeless, but is told like a folk tale, with country aphorisms and speckled with crusty old timers and real life problems. A good book for all ages, but particularly appealing to teenagers who should be able to relate to the problems of the teens in this story.

Julie And Romeo
Julie And Romeo
by Jeanne Ray
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
52 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Charming Romance, Oct. 22 2003
A lovely, funny, and thoroughly enjoyable little story about a middle aged woman and middle aged man with grown children from separate marriages who fall in love. let the family wars begin!!

Carry Me Across the Water: A Novel
Carry Me Across the Water: A Novel
by Ethan Canin
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.40
46 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful Story of WW II Veteran Still Coming To Terms, Oct. 22 2003
This is a powerful story about a war veteran who is nearing the end of his life and is trying to tie off loose ends, one of which is the letter he took from an enemy soldier. He has a complex relationship with his son, and exploring this helps the reader see how this elderly soul is battling his own desire to bury emotions with his desire to reach closure on some unresolved issues. The author is a fairly young man who writes eloquently about older people in most of his works. This is a great story on all levels: adventure, biography, and human affairs.

Prodigal Summer: A Novel
Prodigal Summer: A Novel
by Barbara Kingsolver
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.26
141 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Charming Ode To Nature And Rural People, Oct. 22 2003
This is a love poem to all that's good about the Ozarks, with humble, caring people, mixed with provincial narrowness and a greater faith in nature than in people. It portrays the loves and times of several characters and shows their interconnectedness with the earth, moths, trees, and wildlife.
I listened to the unabridged audio edition, and Ms. Kingsolver's voice is straight from the mountains, soothingly soft and evoking exactly the right emotional response - much like Annie Proulx did with her spare text in Shipping News.

The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
by Malcolm Gladwell
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 14.43
238 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars A Scientific Exploration of One Aspect of Human Behavior, Oct. 22 2003
Gladwell is one of the best writers and analysts out there who explore the human condition. He reads, and cites, pyschological studies to develop propositions that explain behavior. He has a keen eye for discovering plausible explanations, although I have a hard time seeing how to use this knowledge in a predictive manner. It does exlpain a lot, and this book is interesting in its scope and approachability. I think Gladwell is a genius, but I'm not sure how to put this to practical use.

One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd
One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd
by Jim Fergus
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 12.26
277 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Touching Fictional Account of Historical Event, Oct. 22 2003
A woman in an unhappy life takes the opportunity to partake in a government program to pacify American Indians by sending 1000 white women to be their wives. She falls in love with a military officer involved in delivering the women, but grows to learn about the pride, strength, and dignity of the "noble savages" and is caught in between the white and Indian cultures. The characters are not wholly realized, but the emotional touch points are all there.

The Story of My Disappearance: A Novel
The Story of My Disappearance: A Novel
by Paul Watkins
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 14.24
28 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars East German Agent Stranded in US when Wall Comes Down, Oct. 22 2003
This is a believable and compelling story about the violent and dangerous life of East German agents, recruited under pressure; threatened and beaten to carry out their assignments. The assignment of this guy is to spy on a friend, and later to be a courier in disguise in Newport, R.I. (smuggling things to and from a Russian submarine). This is where he is when the Wall comes down and has to decide what the heck to do when stranded in a free country with a fake ID. Everything about this caught me by surprise.

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