Three More Mini-Reviews
Posted by Caitie F on December 23, 2012
I am so backed up with the reviews that I am doing a bunch of mini-reviews! So here are three more.
Title: City of Women
Author: David R Gillham
Hardcover: 390 pages
Pub Date: August 7, 2012
Publisher: Amy Einhorn Books
Short Summary:It is 1943—the height of the Second World War—and Berlin has become a city of women.
Sigrid Schröder is the model German soldier’s wife, but behind this façade is an entirely different Sigrid, a woman who dreams of her former lover, now lost in the chaos of the war. Her lover is a Jew.
Soon Sigrid is embroiled in a world she knew nothing about, and as her eyes open to the reality around her, the carefully constructed fortress of solitude she has built over the years begins to collapse. She must choose to act on what is right and what is wrong, and what falls somewhere in the shadows between the two.
This book is just fantastic. It seems like there have been so many World War II books and there is nothing new, but this is a perspective we don’t often see – a German woman.
Sigrid is a very flawed character, but is written in a way that it is easy to sympathize with her and understand why she is the way the she. Nothing about her is perfect, but slowly she really starts to try to do the right thing no matter how hard it is.
I went into this book knowing very little and I loved it, so I don’t want to tell much about it to you. If you are intrigued by World War II stories and don’t mind some sex scenes, this is a book to pick up and get lost in.
Title: The Professionals
Author: Owen Laukkanen
Hardcover: 370 pages
Publisher: Putnam Adult
Pub Date: March 29,2012
Four friends, recent college graduates, caught in a terrible job market, joke about turning to kidnapping to survive. And then, suddenly, it’s no joke. For two years, the strategy they devise-quick, efficient, low risk-works like a charm. Until they kidnap the wrong man.
Now two groups they’ve very much wanted to avoid are after them-the law, in the form of veteran state investigator Kirk Stevens and hotshot young FBI agent Carla Windermere, and an organized-crime outfit looking for payback.
If you are looking for a fast thriller to read, this is a great choice. It is action-packed and can really speak to the generation that is having such a hard time finding jobs. It is not encouraging anyone to to do what they do – the consequences suck, but it makes you able to understand the initial ploy.
It has great characters from the four young people to the cop trying to bust them. They are frustratingly stupid at times, but at their core, they are so smart.
Usually you are cheering for the cops, but it is hard to choose who to root for. Yes, the four young people do horrible things, but you still kind of root for them.
It isn’t perfect. The writing is really good, but not great. There are some places where the plot is stretched a bit, but it was still a great read!
Title: The Yellow Birds
Author: Kevin Powers
Hardcover: 226 pages
Publisher: Little Brown
Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2012
In Al Tafar, Iraq, twenty-one-year old Private Bartle and eighteen-year-old Private Murphy cling to life as their platoon launches a bloody battle for the city. In the endless days that follow, the two young soldiers do everything to protect each other from the forces that press in on every side: the insurgents, physical fatigue, and the mental stress that comes from constant danger.
I liked the concept of this book and that it let the rest of us see what Iraq is like, bu I think it could have been better.
It felt like the author was trying too hard to be literary and poetic in a way that took away from the story and the real meaning and point of the book. It was too authorly.
It was nominated for many awards, but I think it was an average.debut and could have been better with more tiem and a deeper edit.