Born With Teeth by Kate Mulgrew, memoir
Kate Mulgrew grew up in an Irish Catholic family in Dubuque, Iowa. At age nineteen she won a role on the TV soap, Ryan’s Hope. Soon after that she gave up a baby for adoption and recently they have been reunited. After an important role on Star Trek she is doing some of her best work as an actress in the series Orange Is The New Black. Kate’s firm jawline provides a hint of the determination with which she has lived her life. According to one reviewer her book emphasizes friendship and family rather than career interests.
Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson, history
Already this book is on bestseller lists. I bought it at the Bookloft in Fernandina Beach and have started to read it. Written like a thriller, it is indeed a page turner. I disagree with reviewers who have said it is old news. Seems to me there is much new information about that time in our history. One example is the extent of German cruelty during the World War I era. I’ll give a final verdict when I have finished the book.
Early Warning by Jane Smiley, fiction
The second volume in Smiley’s trilogy about the Langdon family, warm, interesting and rooted in America’s heartland, is released this week. If you haven’t read Some Luck, the first book in the series, run, don’t walk to your nearest bookseller or library. It is a phenomenal read. I recommend this author as certainly one of the finest novelist of our generation.
Made in Detroit by Marge Piercy, poetry
This author is a favorite of mine whether writing fiction or poety. This is her first volume of poetry to be published in some time. She grew up in Detroit. At least some of these poems are autobiographical. I look forward to reading this book, and to a visit in a couple of weeks to the Detroit Library, a place Piercy has called her “saving grace”.
God Help the Child: a Novel by Toni Morrison
Since my earliest days as an educator, I have been puzzled by why some children meet life’s difficult challenges with an almost unbelievable resiliency, enabling them to grow and prosper, while others are increasingly vulnerable in difficult circumstances and never become the persons they might have been. Apparently this novel deals with the scars of childhood, and the fears adults entertain about doing the best for their children. How do sufferings in childhood effect adult life? This woman is a fierce writer of giant talent. She always has something important to say as one puzzles through her stories.