More than 850 book reviews

A superb new novel about defectors in Moscow (0)

Defectors: A Novel, by Joseph Kanon @@@@@ (5 out of 5) The disappearance of British diplomats Donald MacLean and Guy Burgess in 1951 and the subsequent revelation in 1956 of them as defectors to the Soviet Union shocked the world and has subsequently provided fodder for a virtual cottage industry of spy novels. Only much later… Read More ›

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Nonfiction »

A very funny book about words, grammar, and dictionaries (0)

Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries, by Kory Stamper @@@@@ (5 out of 5) When you think of dictionaries, chances are good the ones that would come to mind are the Merriam-Webster Collegiate and the Oxford English Dictionary (as well as whatever comes up online). Did I get that right? Certainly, those are… Read More ›

Trade Fiction »

A powerful feminist story in a dystopian landscape (0)

The Book of the Unnamed Midwife, by Meg Elison @@@@ (4 out of 5) Meg Elison‘s debut novel, The Book of the Unnamed Midwife, won the prestigious Philip K. Dick Award and was included among the Publishers Weekly Best Books of the Year, 2016, and Amazon Best Books of the Year, 2016. It’s another sign that science fiction has… Read More ›

Mysteries & Thrillers »

A superb new novel about defectors in Moscow (0)

Defectors: A Novel, by Joseph Kanon @@@@@ (5 out of 5) The disappearance of British diplomats Donald MacLean and Guy Burgess in 1951 and the subsequent revelation in 1956 of them as defectors to the Soviet Union shocked the world and has subsequently provided fodder for a virtual cottage industry of spy novels. Only much later… Read More ›

FAQs & Commentaries »

My 1000th post: revisiting my 10 most-read book reviews

Seven and a half years after I launched this blog, I’ve reached a milestone: this is my 1000th post. Nearly 900 of those posts are book reviews. I’m listing here the 10 most popular over the past three years. Four of those 10 books are mysteries and thrillers, two are trade novels, and four are works of nonfiction…. Read More ›