My Name is Lucy Barton: Elizabeth Strout

A woman in a hospital in New York turns from the window to find her estranged mother sitting by her bed. Over the next five days they talk, remembering people they both knew and reestablishing forgotten connections. Then as abruptly as she came, the mother leaves. The book is narrated by the daughter, Lucy Barton, …

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Women travellers tell their stories

Think of all the travel books that you have read: how many of them are written by men? Almost all? And yet women have been travelling and writing about it for as long as men. As a reviewer for the website, Women on the Road, I have spent the last few years reading these books. …

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City on Fire: Garth Risk Hallberg

An ambitious debut, City on Fire paints a portrait of New York in the 60s and 70s, following a group of people as they try to make (or unmake) their lives in the city. The book begins during Christmas 1976/New Year 1977. It is the time of punk and there is revolution in the air. …

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Listening to the Writer’s Voice

I'm looking at close to half an hour of standing over the stove, staring into a pot as I stir, maybe stepping away for a few seconds at a time to check on this or that, open the refrigerator and put something away, or just look out the window. I block out the impatient honks …

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Paper Towns: John Green

“The way I figure it, everyone gets a miracle. … My miracle was this: in all the houses of all the subdivisions in all of Florida, I ended up living next door to Margo Roth Spiegelman.” The book is narrated by Quentin Jacobsen, a 17-year-old close to finishing high school in Orlando, Florida. Quentin is …

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