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Profile for Dennis R. Montagna > Reviews

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Content by Dennis R. Montagna
Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,534,157
Helpful Votes: 29

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Reviews Written by
Dennis R. Montagna (Massapequa, NY United States)

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Rape: A Love Story
Rape: A Love Story
by Joyce Carol Oates
Edition: Hardcover
28 used & new from CDN$ 0.79

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rape and Love. Polar Opposites., June 17 2004
This review is from: Rape: A Love Story (Hardcover)
Finally, a novel that ends the way you want it to (almost). The spectre of shame overcome by heart felt feeling and compassion. Leave it to Joyce Carol Oates to dig into our innermost feelings about this most intimate issue.
I recommend this as a good read.

The Grave Of God's Daughter: A Novel
The Grave Of God's Daughter: A Novel
by Brett E Block
Edition: Hardcover
21 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars The Grave of God's Daughter / A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, June 17 2004
This novel, written aginst a backdrop of rural industrial Pennsylvania circa 1939-40 is strikingly similar to a "A Tree Grows In Brooklyn", albeit a darker version. The central character, a young girl, raised to be close to her younger brother Martin, remains (notably) unnamed thrughout the novel. She projects love, and silently screams out for love throughout this novel. Sadly, the return of love manifests in ways all too subtle and, so, unrecognizable to a young child.
The saddest part of this novel is a scene where, after she has burned her hands on a pot of hot water, boiled to bathe her brother, she reaches for the washroom door only to have the door jerked from her by her father, entering from the living area. She then lowers her head, mumbles an apology, and brushes past him. At this point you can feel the inner turmoil of this woman/child. All she wanted was some small token of recognition. A smile. A word. Something.
An unexpected ending underscores this brilliant novel of growing up, complete with the yearning for acceptance, identity and love.
I highly recommend this wonderful, evocative novel. It's not to be missed.

Those Who Save Us: A Novel
Those Who Save Us: A Novel
by Jenna Blum
Edition: Hardcover
17 used & new from CDN$ 22.60

28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Those Who Save Us, May 18 2004
This is a truly terrific novel, one that weaves new definitions of victim and guilt into the familiarly horrific landscape of Nazi Germany.
Alternating between Weimar, Germany in the early days of World War II and the present day mid-American panorama of Minnesota, Jenna Blum gives us a vivid, though tortuous picture of the conflicts presented to Anna as she struggles to make sense of Third Reich atrocities against the Jews, and their insensitivity to the everyday hardships of non-Jewish German civilians.
As difficult a time as this is for Anna, a young woman who finds dangerous love in the person of Max, a Jewish veternarian, whom she hides from the SS in the home that she shares with her father, her situation is complicated by the discovery and incarceration of Max in the Buchenwald concentration camp, and the subsequent birth of Trudie, her daughter with Max.
The devasting emotional consequences that arise from Anna's having to choose between the safety of herself and her daughter, and the acquiesance to the constant, and often brutal, advances of the Obersturmfuher of Buchenwald are detailed with frightening detail that ultimately leads Anna, many years later, to conclude that "we come to love those who save us". Equally striking is the eventual realization by Trudie, through a combination of years spent doggedly pursuing the truths of this era and plain luck, of the true nature of her monthers distant deportment over the years since their migration to America.
This is a novel that reads like reality, and a "must read".

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