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Books

A zombie book where your brain feels a little nibbled on

Sunday, July 20, 2014

“The Girl With All the Gifts,” by M.R. Carey. Orbit. Most zombie stories follow the same formula: Brawny dudes use guns and makeshift weapons to protect nerds, women and children from the ravenous dead and from other survivors. Yawn. M.R. Carey’s The Girl With All the Gifts is a terrifying zombie novel, but not in the expected way. The real enemy here isn’t the walking dead or even the crafty … 0

‘Dark Aemilia’ a treat for Shakespeare lovers

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sally O’Reilly’s wildly romantic novel Dark Aemilia is a pleasure for anyone who enjoys well-crafted historical fiction and a special treat for Shakespeare lovers. Drawing on the biography of a real-life woman proposed by some scholars as the model for the Dark Lady of the Bard’s sonnets, O’Reilly creates a fiery, proto-feminist heroine … 0

‘The Mockingbird Next Door’ a world caught just in time

Sunday, July 20, 2014

There are many reasons to be grateful for The Mockingbird Next Door, Marja Mills’s wonderful memoir of Harper Lee and her sister, and being enticed to reread To Kill a Mockingbird is just one of them. Improbable as it seemed even to Mills when she first was granted access to the two fiercely … 0

In ‘The Inevitable City’, Tulane president offers account of rebuilding New Orleans

Sunday, July 6, 2014

There’s a lot of sensible stuff in this account of post-Katrina New Orleans by the outgoing president of its most prominent educational institution, Tulane University, but there’s a lot of soapy stuff, too. In The Inevitable City, Scott … 0

Meg Gardiner’s latest thriller, ‘Phantom Instinct,’ is her best yet

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Meg Gardiner’s latest thriller, Phantom Instinct, begins with a shootout at the club where Harper Flynn works. Harper’s boyfriend is killed, a police officer is severely wounded, the bar burns to the ground and leaves no evidence of … 0

‘Supreme City’: How New York rose to the top

Sunday, July 6, 2014

E.B. White, the affectionate chronicler of Manhattan life, believed that New York comprised three cities: one of people born there and a second of the commuter. “Third,” he added, “there is the New York of the person who was born somewhere else and came to New York in … 0

‘Flying Shoes’ based on unsolved killing of author’s brother

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Lisa Howorth has taken the adage “write what you know” and turned it on its head. In this case, she’s written what she may never know for sure: the solution to her brother’s slaying. When Howorth was a teenager in 1966, her 9-year-old stepbrother was molested and killed … 0

‘Good Hunting’ gives peek inside CIA

Sunday, July 6, 2014

There is an art to writing a CIA memoir. You must divulge enough insider tradecraft and gossip that readers feel they’re getting a glimpse behind the curtain, but not so much that the censors swoop down. You have to describe covert operations in colorful detail, without revealing still-classified … 0

Verdon’s cleverness shines in new thriller

Sunday, July 6, 2014

John Verdon’s skillful melding of the puzzle mystery with the police procedural and the psychological thriller brings a unique spin to his series about retired NYPD homicide Detective Dave Gurney. Peter Pan Must Die again presents Dave with … 0

Writer David Levithan on LGBT books for the young

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Writer David Levithan last year marked the 10th anniversary of his Boy Meets Boy, a romantic teen comedy where the homecoming queen was once a guy and the gay-straight alliance was aimed at helping the straight kids learn … 0

Review: Karin Slaughter’s ‘Cop Town’ is engrossing

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Karin Slaughter wraps an intense thriller around a legacy of sexism, race relations and politics in the engrossing Cop Town. Slaughter, author of the Will Trent best-sellers, keeps her first stand-alone novel from becoming a history lesson by … 0

Eggers’s ‘Fathers’ an angry take on changing world

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Dave Eggers is angry. A writer both beloved and criticized for his distinctly sentimental bursts appears to be seething, worried about crumbling institutions, lost privacy, diminished intimacy and humanity in general. At least, that’s the impression left after … 0

Review: ‘Ways of the Dead’ is fast-paced narrative

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Neely Tucker’s debut novel is an utterly thrilling mystery set in Washington, D.C., in the late 1990s, just before the internet and the rise of smart phones changed the landscape of print journalism. Sarah Reese, the teenage daughter … 0