From Doon with Death by Ruth Rendell

September 29, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): Inspector Mike Burden gets a frantic call from neighbor Ronald Parsons one evening. Mr. Parsons’s wife, Margaret, has not returned home from her daily errands, nor has she left any indication that she intended to be gone for a long time. This is completely unlike her. Burden tries to assure Parsons […]


The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

September 28, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): Precious Ramotswe (aka Mma Ramotswe) is a thirty-something divorced woman who decides to use the money she inherits after her father’s death to open a detective agency. She calls it the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency — the first of its kind in Gaborone, or indeed in all of Botswana. Mma […]


Lucy by Laurence Gonzales

September 26, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): Lucy by Laurence Gonzales tells the story of a seemingly normal 14-year-old “girl” named Lucy. Born and raised in the Congolese jungle, she escapes first to London and then to America with anthropologist Jenny Lowe after both her parents are killed in the Congolese civil war. Jenny has brought David’s (Lucy’s […]


Alaska by James Michener

September 22, 2010

Plot summary (from the publisher:) “In this sweeping epic of the northernmost American frontier, James A. Michener guides us across Alaska’s fierce terrain, from the long-forgotten past to the bustling technological present, as his characters struggle for survival. The exciting high points of Alaska’s story, from its brutal prehistory, through the nineteenth century and the […]


A Wedding in December by Anita Shreve

September 21, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): This book centers on a small group of former high school classmates who gather together after 27 years to celebrate the wedding of two of them, Bill and Bridget. Bill and Bridget had been sweethearts back at Kidd Academy, and everyone thought they would stay together forever. But Bill ended up […]


Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner

September 20, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): Addie Downs was a quiet, shy 9-year-old who always had trouble making friends — until that fateful day when Valerie Adler moved in across the street. The two instantly became best friends, and stayed that way until senior year of high school when some terrible event drove them apart. Now it’s […]


NY Times Bestsellers 91910

September 19, 2010

Here are the current New York Times bestsellers in a handful of the more popular categories. Hardcover Fiction: 1. FREEDOM, by Jonathan Franzen 2. THE GIRL WHO KICKED THE HORNET’S NEST, by Stieg Larsson 3. NO MERCY, by Sherrilyn Kenyon 4. GETTING TO HAPPY, by Terry McMillan 5. THE HELP, by Kathryn Stockett Hardcover Nonfiction: […]


Sh*t My Dad Says by Justin Halpern

September 19, 2010

Summary (from the publisher): “After being dumped by his longtime girlfriend, twenty-eight-year-old Justin Halpern found himself living at home with his seventy-three-year-old dad. Sam Halpern, who is “like Socrates, but angrier, and with worse hair,” has never minced words, and when Justin moved back home, he began to record all the ridiculous things his dad […]


500 Beauty Tips for Teens

September 18, 2010

A friend’s daughter just started junior high school this year, and according to my friend, is already asking about makeup and such. I remember how my friends and I went through a similar phase when we were that age. None of our parents would let us wear makeup, though, so we’d all sneak it to […]


One False Move by Harlan Coben

September 17, 2010

Plot summary (with spoilers): Sports agent/detective Myron Bolitar is back in action with another case. This time he’s called in by old associate Norm Zuckerman to be a bodyguard of sorts to Brenda Slaughter, a professional basketball player who is going to be the face of the new women’s league Norm is starting. Brenda has […]