Monthly Archives: May 2017

Tenth of December by George Saunders: Escape from Spiderhead

Escape from Spiderhead is a tale that looks into a dystopian future, where convicts can either enter experimental drug testing programs or serve time in prison. After Jeff was convicted for murder, his mother had spent all her savings to get him out of real jail, and put him to a drug testing program. So […]

Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood

I was very excited when I first heard about the Hogarth Shakespeare project, where modern writers create novels inspired by Shakespeare’s plays. I’m a huge Margaret Atwood fan, so Hag-Seed, Atwood’s retelling of The Tempest is a book I was looking forward to reading! 🙂 (Before I received Hag-Seed, I bought the Folger Shakespeare Library […]

Tenth of December by George Saunders: Puppy

Puppy by George Saunders is thought-provoking. The story alternates between the perspective of two mothers, Marie and Callie, whose sons have behavioral disorders. Puppy begins by looking into the life of Marie. She is a suburban mother who keeps her son; Josh’s violent outbursts under control by having him glued to a video game. Marie’s […]

The Black Spider by Jeremias Gotthelf

The Black Spider written in 1842 is a short novella set in a remote Swiss village. On a summer Sunday, the villagers gather to celebrate a baptism at a lovely farmhouse. During the feast (the child is the firstborn son, so food doesn’t stop coming!), one of the villagers wants to know the story behind […]

Tenth of December by George Saunders: Sticks

Sticks, the second story in Tenth of December is possibly the shortest in the collection. Sticks is the story of a grown man reminiscing memories of his father. The Dad in the story is a strict, controlling parent who yelled at his children over trivial things like wasting a slice of an apple and monitored the […]

The Z Murders by J. Jefferson Farjeon

The plot The Z Murders occurs over a short time-span of a day and a half. The story starts at around 5 AM in the morning when Richard Temperley arrives at Euston station. Temperley is expected at his sister’s house, but he doesn’t want to go there too early and bother the servants. Instead, he […]

Tenth of December by George Saunders: Victory Lap

Victory Lap which was first published in The New Yorker is the first story in George Saunders’ award-winning short story collection, Tenth of December. The story begins with the perspective of Alison Pope, a teenage girl who is almost fifteen. We find her daydreaming – imagining herself in a grand ball looking for her “special […]

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

I was made a fool by the jacket of The Woman in Cabin 10! With its compelling premise, I was sure to find myself immersed in the book, but wow, no such luck for me! Lo Blacklock, in her early thirties, is a journalist for the travel magazine Velocity. The story starts with Lo getting […]

Giveaway: The Wine of Solitude by Irène NĂ©mirovsky (US Only)

The Wine of Solitude published in 1935 is the next up in my Irène NĂ©mirovsky year-long project, so I am giving away one paperback copy of the book. I have not read the book yet. But Irène NĂ©mirovsky is an incredible author, so I have no doubt this will be a lovely treat. If you […]

The Persephone Book of Short Stories: A Few Problems in the Day Case Unit by Georgina Hammick

Today I read the final short story in The Persephone Book of Short Stories. It has been quite a journey with this book. I was introduced to new authors, had the opportunity to see life from different viewpoints, and live vicariously through some characters! (Sigh!) I am going to miss reading this book! Georgina Hammick’s […]

Long Black Veil by Jennifer Finney Boylan

The day after Jon Casey and Wailer Curtin got married in 1980, the newlyweds decide to visit the abandoned ruins of Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary at night with four of their college friends; Rachel Steinberg, Maisie Lenfest, Tripper Pennypacker, and Quentin Pheaney. Benny, Masier’s brother, and Nathan Krystal, an old teacher also tag along with […]

The Persephone Book of Short Stories: World Apart by Penelope Fitzgerald

Penelope Fitzgerald is not a new author to me. I have read two of her books – The Bookshop, and The Blue Flower – and have Offshore (Man Booker winner, 1979) in my TBR pile. It has been a while since I read her works, so World Apart short story was a good refresher for […]

Our Short History by Lauren Grodstein

Karen Neulander is a single mother to Jacob, a six-year-old boy. When Karen was forty-one-years-old she had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer, so with around two years left to live she decides to write a memoir named Our Short History for her son to read when he is old enough. From the beginning, Karen comes […]