Braille Book Review--Nov.-Dec. 1996

Books for Adults--Fiction

Books listed in this issue of Braille Book Review were recently sent to cooperating libraries. The complete collection contains books by many authors on fiction and nonfiction subjects, including biographies, classics, gothics, mysteries, romances, and others. Contact your cooperating library to learn more about the wide range of books available in the collection.

To order books, contact your cooperating library.

Note: For the information of the reader, a notice may appear immediately following the book description to indicate occurrences of strong language, explicit descriptions of sex, or violence. The word "some" before any of these terms indicates an occasional or infrequent occurrence, as in "some strong language."

Kristin Lavransdatter: Volume 1, The Bridal Wreath BR 10085
by Sigrid Undset
3 volumes
In this first volume of a trilogy set in medieval Norway, the winner of the 1928 Nobel Prize for literature tells of Kristin's girlhood and her love for Erlend Nikulaussön, a young man of whom her father strongly disapproves. Prequel to The Mistress of Husaby (BR 10086). 1923.

The Carpetbaggers BR 10129
by Harold Robbins
7 volumes
A study of the rise to power of Jonas Cord, a man haunted by a demanding father and a man committed to success, regardless of the consequences. Prequel to The Raiders (BR 10130). Strong language and explicit descriptions of sex. 1961.

If I Should Die before I Wake BR 10142
by Han Nolan
2 volumes
Since her father died in an accident she attributes to his Jewish boss, Hilary has shaved her head and joined a local youth gang called the Great Aryan Warriors. Now in a Jewish hospital after a motorcycle accident, Hilary is annoyed by the pity in an elderly woman's eyes. Then Hilary spirals into another place and time--Nazi Germany--and realizes she is a Jewish girl named Chana. Strong language and some violence. For junior and senior high readers. 1994.

The Crystal Star BR 10187
by Vonda N. McIntyre
3 volumes
While Princess Leia attempts to rescue her kidnapped children from a power-mad Empire loyalist, Luke Skywalker and Han Solo investigate a space-bending crystalline star that causes a disruption in the Force and adversely affects Luke's Jedi powers. And on a nearby planet, Luke and Han meet a charismatic alien with miraculous healing powers, but whose intentions are unclear. A Star Wars novel. 1994.

The Angel Gang: Tom Hickey Trilogy, Book 3 BR 10190
by Ken Kuhlken
2 volumes
After rescuing childlike Wendy from a Tijuana dive in The Loud Adios (BR 9977), ex-private eye Tom Hickey took her to his Tahoe retreat and eventually married her. Now that Wendy is about to give birth, Hickey is frustrated that she insists he leave town to help a past acquaintance beat a murder rap. His frustration turns to horror when Wendy is kidnapped. Strong language and some violence. 1994.

The Life and Adventures of Martin Chuzzlewit BR 10218
by Charles Dickens
8 volumes
Old Chuzzlewit, surrounded by a selfish family, sees the same traits forming in his grandson Martin and kicks him out of the house. Penniless, young Martin makes his way to America to seek his fortune. After a series of difficult experiences, he is cured of his greed. Other members of the Chuzzlewit clan have their own selfish goals, including a plot to murder Old Chuzzlewit. 1844.

Telling Lies: A Maggie MacGowen Mystery BR 10238
by Wendy Hornsby
2 volumes
Twenty-two years ago today, investigative filmmaker Maggie MacGowen's twenty-two-year-old brother Marc was killed in Vietnam, and his twin sister Emily was the cover story in Time magazine because of her antiwar activities. On this anniversary, Emily, now a well-loved doctor, has summoned Maggie and others together for a "mystery guest" but is shot before the unveiling. Strong language, violence, and descriptions of sex. 1992.

Rocking the Babies BR 10246
by Linda Raymond
2 volumes
Although Martha and Nettie Lee are both older African American women who volunteer to rock premature babies at a hospital, they dislike each other from the start. Martha wants to become a foster mother for a preemie abandoned in a Port-a-Potty. She doesn't realize that Nettie Lee is the child's grandmother, who is staying anonymous to protect her daughter. As the two women tell stories and befriend a young mother, they grow closer. Strong language. 1994.

In the Sparrow Hills: Stories BR 10252
by Emile Capouya
2 volumes
Five autobiographical tales. Most draw on the author's experiences, often having to do with life at sea and occasionally with literary associations. In the title story, the narrator searches in vain for a Chekhov tale he read in college. 1993.

The Dawning of Deliverance: The Russians, Volume 5 BR 10264
by Judith Pella
3 volumes
In the early 1900s, Countess Mariana Remizov, twenty-three and unmarried, wants to do something more with her life. Her father and grandmother are outraged when Mariana heads to the Manchurian front to work as a nurse. There she again meets Daniel Trent. As war rages, Mariana and her family rely on God's power to bring them love and freedom. Sequel to Heirs of the Motherland (BR 9863). 1995.

Jasmine Nights BR 10268
by S.P. Somtow
3 volumes
In a crazy mix of Thai, American, British, and classic Greek influences, twelve-year-old Justin explores the mysteries of the adult world in his native Bangkok. He and his two cohorts-in-adventure, one from black Georgia, the other from white South Africa, combine knowledge and misconceptions from their very different backgrounds. Glossary of Siamese words. Strong language and explicit descriptions of sex. 1994.

Mysterium BR 10290
by Robert Charles Wilson
2 volumes
Two Rivers, Michigan, is the site of a government facility that is conducting tests on a strange artifact found in Turkey in 1989. Then in the early dawn hours of a Saturday in late May, the town vanishes. The residents awake to find themselves in a town without modern technology and governed by a powerful, repressive church. Some violence. 1994.

The Nature of Longing BR 10293
by Alyce Miller
2 volumes
Collection of eight short stories, most dealing with the complexity of race relations. In the title story about a homosexual librarian, race is less an issue than sexuality. In "Color Struck," a black mother has difficulty accepting her albino daughter. In "What Jasmine Would Think," a white teenage girl tries to hang out with a group of black teens, and in "Off-Season Travel," two couples develop an unsettling bond. Some strong language. 1994.

The Aliens of Earth BR 10298
by Nancy Kress
3 volumes
Eighteen science fiction and fantasy stories by the Nebula and Hugo Award-winning author. The collection includes "The Price of Oranges," a time travel story; "In a World like This," a tale that presents a nightmarish erosion of reality; and "The Battle of Long Island," about an alternate universe. "People like Us" and "Cannibals" are concerned with aliens. Some strong language. 1993.

Bertie and the Crime of Passion BR 10305
by Peter Lovesey
2 volumes
Paris, 1891. Bertie, prince of Wales, has just arrived in Paris when Sarah Bernhardt informs him that the intended son-in-law of his good friend Jules d'Agincourt has been murdered. Bertie enlists Sarah's help, and they are soon off to the Moulin Rouge, where the murder occurred. 1993.

Murder on the Iditarod Trail BR 10307
by Sue Henry
2 volumes
Critical injuries are rare during the Iditarod dog-sled race, but on day two musher George Koptak is found dead. While Alaska state trooper Alex Jensen investigates the accident, he learns that another contestant is dead. At a loss for determining a motive, Jensen turns to musher Jessie Arnold for help. As other racers die, Alex, who is growing fond of Jessie, begins to fear for her. Strong language and violence. For high school and older readers. 1991.

The Cat Who Said Cheese BR 10344
by Lilian Jackson Braun
2 volumes
It is autumn in Pickax City, and Qwill, along with other residents, is preparing for the Great Food Expo--a festival of all kinds of happenings related to food. There is also a mysterious female guest at the New Pickax Hotel whose presence is causing quite a stir. But things really get hectic when a bomb explodes in the hotel and the intended victim seems to be the mystery guest. As usual, Siamese cats Koko and Yum Yum help solve the crime. Bestseller 1996.

Blackening Song BR 10348
by Aimee and David Thurlo
3 volumes
Ella Clah left the Navajo reservation to join the FBI and start a new life. When her father is murdered, she returns, against FBI rules, to the "Rez" to investigate. Her brother, a medicine man, is considered a suspect. In trying to clear his name, Ella feels the tug of two cultures and two ways of life. She must discover her own identity as she seeks that of the murderer. Some violence and some strong language. 1995.

Interface BR 10349
by Stephen Bury
5 volumes
William Cozzano is the perfect presidential candidate. An international network to whom the United States owes most of the national debt has taken him over, literally, with a microchip in his brain. The network can instantaneously feed the latest public opinions, obtained from the populace by wrist-worn polling units, directly into Cozzano. He's unbeatable--if nothing goes wrong! Strong language and some descriptions of sex. 1994.

Alma BR 10350
by Gordon Burn
2 volumes
Burn bases this 1991 Whitbread Prize novel on the life of Alma Cogan, a 1950s British singer who died of cancer in 1966. In Burn's tale, Alma is still alive in 1986, and she explores the complex relationship between her public and private life. Some strong language and some violence. 1991.

The Lethal Partner BR 10351
by Jake Page
2 volumes
Blind Santa Fe artist Mo Bowdre, from The Stolen Gods (BR 10360), once again becomes involved in a murder investigation. Shortly after gallery owner Elijah Potts announces he has seven previously unknown Georgia O'Keeffe paintings, his gallery manager is killed and the paintings disappear. When Potts is arrested for her murder, he turns to Bowdre, who discovers a complex web of deceit and backstabbing. Strong language. 1996.

Dance Hall of the Dead BR 10352
by Tony Hillerman
2 volumes
Navajo police lieutenant Joe Leaphorn faces a mystery and a possible murder in the disappearance of a Zuni youth and his Navajo best friend shortly before an important annual Zuni religious ceremony. Beliefs, motivations, and actions of characters reveal the differences between the Navajo and Zuni cultures. 1973.

Electricity: A Novel BR 10353
by Victoria Glendinning
2 volumes
In Victorian England, the change of mores that broadens women's roles and the coming of technology that alters daily life are reflected in the notebooks of a young woman. Raised in a repressive household, Charlotte Mortimer becomes enamored of a young engineer who introduces electricity with a missionary zeal. Her infatuation pales after marriage, though, and she enters into a dangerous new liaison. 1995.

Riding the Rap BR 10359
by Elmore Leonard
2 volumes
Retiring bookie Harry Arno sends bounty hunter Bobby Deo to collect money owed him by Chip Ganz. Instead, Chip convinces Bobby to help him and ex-convict Louis Lewis kidnap Harry. Luckily for Harry, his former girlfriend Joyce is now dating federal marshal Raylan Givens. Raylan is not too thrilled with Harry, but he is a fair man and good at tracking people and escorting them to prison to "ride the rap." Strong language and some violence. 1995.


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(Last Update: November 12, 1996)