Category: Contemporary Fiction

Review of Where’d You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple

There are so many things I love about this book.  I loved the humor and the snarkiness, I loved the making fun of the private school moms, Seattle, and Microsoft, and I loved the characters of Bee and Bernadette.  Granted, Bernadette is a hard character to like.  I suspect some people will find her very…

Review of Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell

My vacation reading had some highs and lows, and this was one of the highs. Rainbow Rowell caught my attention with Attachments, but she’s earned my respect with Eleanor & Park.  This book was, in a word, beautiful. Eleanor & Park is about two teenagers who meet on a school bus.  Park is half-Korean, half-Irish,…

Review: Zaremba, or Love and the Rule of Law by Michelle Granas

I was interested in this book for two reasons.  First, it’s sort of a historical/political novel about modern-day Poland.  I’m a quarter Polish, and visited Poland for the first time two years ago, and loved it.  We were fascinated by the country’s rich history and modern-day politics. But secondly, as I started reading the book,…

Review: Please Look After Mom by Kyung-Sook Shin

Please Look After Mom is a widely acclaimed Korean novel by Kyung-Sook Shin, which tells the story of a family who lose their mother in a Seoul subway station.  Park So-Nyo is an elderly wife and mother of five who gets separated from her husband in a crowded station and disappears.  The family’s efforts to…

Review of The Tortilla Curtain by T. Coraghessan Boyle

The Tortilla Curtain might not be my favorite T.C. Boyle, but like his others it poses interesting issues, great writing that blends emotion and sarcasm, and even though it was written in 1995 every issue it raises is meaningful today. Curtain takes place in Los Angeles’ Topanga Canyon.  It’s a story of contrasts, between an…