Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

Vonnegut, Kurt. (1963, 2010). Cat’s Cradle. Dial Press Trade Paperbacks; New York. This novel is not exactly ‘light summer reading’, but if you want to delve into a story that is equal parts satire, analysis, and analogy, then you have come to the right place. The tale will force you to think, and perhaps at…

Majipoor Chronicles by Robert Silverberg

Silverberg, Robert. (1982). Majipoor Chronicles. Arbor House; New York.  This was the lovely little book that I picked up, purely out of curiosity, in the Little Lending Library along Margaret Street in Waterloo. And how glad I am that I happened to select it! It is a fun collection of short stories detailing the history of…

A Guide for the Perplexed by Dara Horn

Horn, Dara. (2013). A Guide for the Perplexed. W. W. Norton & Company; New York.  Before I wrote this review, I resisted reading other people’s interpretations of A Guide for the Perplexed – though I would encourage the reader to make use of additional information sources. I admit that I was myself perplexed at points throughout…

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Golding, William. (1959). Lord of the Flies. Penguin Group; New York.  Perhaps, for the younger generation of readers, this classic novel will be set aside in favor of more recently popular stories – particularly The Hunger Games. I read Lord of the Flies for the first time in high school, wrote some meaningless paper on…

Fallen Beauty by Erika Robuck

Robuck, Erika. (2014). Fallen Beauty. New American Library; New York.  When I saw this book featured prominently at my local library, I became quite excited and slipped it into my book bag. “Ah!” I thought. “Here is a writer on my plane of thought – fascinated with the lives of female authors in the 1920s”….

The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin

Le Guin, Ursula K. (1969). The Left Hand of Darkness. Ace Books; New York.  You can read a lot of great reviews, analyzes, and summaries of The Left Hand of Darkness online (for an example, check out the humorously-written cheat sheets over at Shmoop). Indeed, this Hugo and Nebula Award-winning novel has been critically acclaimed…

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Steinbeck, John. (1993, 1937). Of Mice and Men. Bantam Books; New York.  As the rains pour down outside my window, I sit down to pen a review of this short but poignant novel – and how appropriate the weather is! It is a dark story chronicling the story of George Milton and Lennie Small, two friends…

The Fourth Turning by William Strauss and Neil Howe

Strauss, W., & Howe, N. (1997). The Fourth Turning: An American Prophecy. Broadway Books; New York.  The Amazon review for The Fourth Turning suggests that reading this book will change the way you view the world – and your place in it. These words concisely sum up how I felt after my first exposure to the…

Arcadia by Tom Stoppard

Stoppard, Tom. (1993). Arcadia. Faber and Faber; London.  The first time I read through Arcadia, the subtle nuances went right over my head – whoosh! – and I was left contemplating the slim paperback with some discomfort at the end of my reading. I’m sure that seeing the play would have left me similarly disjointed….

The Robber Bride by Margaret Atwood

Atwood, Margaret. (1993). The Robber Bride. Seal Books; Toronto. I confess that this is the only Margaret Atwood novel that I have ever read. As my taste in reading changes over the years, I will likely find that her writing appeals to me more and more. Her writing is incredibly detail-oriented, and in this particular…

House of Many Shadows by Barbara Michaels

Michaels, Barbara. (1974). House of Many Shadows. Berkley Books; New York.  As a young teenager, my frequent immersions into the world of fiction meant that I enjoyed the rather tawdry and sensational novels in the genre of Gothic romances. House of Many Shadows fits into this category quite nicely, and innocent, doe-eyed readers will find…

The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Chopin, Kate. (1899, 2008). The Awakening. Premier Classic Paperback; New York.  It is hard for me to fathom how this book was written and published so very long ago, although Knopf Publishing Group thoughtfully outlines a chronology of historical events to contextualize the work in my version. While reading the book, I had to keep…