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2008 Reviews

See index of all past Customer Reviews

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 10
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
by Stieg Larsson

In the story we meet Lisbeth Salander, a computer hacker mouse of a girl that many have written off mentally off. She gets tied into a missing persons case by a financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist. The story dips back to the past as they uncover what might have happened while Blomkvist battles his future status as a journalist with his recent libel conviction. Lots of twists and turns in this story and a bit to get into at first but it picks up quickly.

Score - 7
reviewed by Kris J.
patron of the Anderson and Bethany Branch Libraries
October 4, 2008

Keith Jarrett at the Blue Note - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 10
Keith Jarrett at the Blue Note
by Keith Jarrett
Compact Disc 781.66 Jar

Done live, this is one of Jarrett's best performances. No real "cuts" stand out, just the album as a whole. Whether you're new to jazz or a real aficionado, it's definitely worth a listen.

Score - 10
reviewed by Barbara R.
patron of the Gere Branch Library
August 27, 2008

The Land of Second Chances - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 8
The Land of Second Chances
by George Shaffner

If you haven't met the miracle traveling salesman Vernon Moore, you're missing a series of very special books. In The Land of Second Chances starts the series that continues with One Part Angel and the newest, The Widows of Eden. Philosophic, moral, humorous, and touching -- join the townspeople of the fictional Ebb, Nebraska (just south of Beatrice) as they try to figure out just who Mr. Moore is and what will happen next.

Score - 8
reviewed by Barbara R.
patron of the Gere Branch Libraries
July 19, 2008

The Glass Castle - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 10
The Glass Castle
by Jeanette Walls [B W1547]

This is childhood memoir that trumps and triumphs at every turn. Walls grew up learning how to survive in an impoverished and itinerant environment fostered upon her by wildly self-indulgent parents. She survives by learning how to be responsible for herself even at the tender age of four. Her mother, who fancies herself a misunderstood artist, seems to believe that children should just raise themselves. And her father, Rex Walls, a self-anointed, alchoholic "genius", even goes so far as to steal and seemingly prostitute his daughter, to serve his various addictions. Yet, the real wonder is that Walls has lived to tell the tale.

This is a book that transcends ordinary biography and enters the realm of literature, so astonishing is its tale.

Score - 10
reviewed by James W.
patron of the South Branch Libraries
May 30, 2008

Secret Adventures of Charlotte Bronte - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 9
The Secret Adventures of Charlotte Bronte
by Laura Joh Rowland

Charlotte and Anne Bronte are off to London to prove they are indeed seperate authors writing under their own pen names. While there, they happen across a murder that puts them in the center of a mystery that Charlotte feels compelled to flush out. A mysterious man is asking questions and Charlotte finds on more than one occasion a bit of an attraction to him. The story sets the whole Bronte family in peril as the plot thickens and the Crown is threatened. Fun and lively imagination by this author. I hope she has more mysteries to solve in the future.

Score - 9
reviewed by Kris J.
patron of the Anderson and Bethany Branch Libraries
Apr 21, 2008

The Little House - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 9
Dragon Rider
by Cornelia Funke

The story of the Dragon Rider comes to life when actor Brendan Fraser tells the colorful tale of the silver dragon Firedrakes quest for his ancestral homelands before humans take over their current valley. On his journey Firedrake takes his friend Sorrel the Scottish brownie and he picks up an orphaned boy Ben, who becomes the Dragon Rider. Other characters work to help them find their way and many conflicts try to deter them from finding the dragons ancient home. If you know of a reluctant young reader, I highly recommend listening to this book. The characters are unforgetable and the story tells a timeless message.

Score - 109
reviewed by Kris J.
patron of the Anderson and Bethany Branch Libraries
Apr 14, 2008

The Little House - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 9
The Little House
by Philippa Gregory

Most avid readers will know Philippa Gregory as a historical writer centering around the Tudor era in England but she has also written a little known gem set in the 20th century. In the Little House, a young working couple are asked by his parents to come and live down the lane from them when the cottage comes up for sale. This makes it hard for the young couple to live their own lives and have any privacy. This is a page turning surprise of a novel.

Score - 9
reviewed by Kris J.
patron of the Anderson and Bethany Branch Libraries
Mar 11, 2008

Nicholas Nickleby - VHS Set
Average Score:
Score - 10
Nicholas Nichelby
by Charles Dickens
Video Dickens

STOP! Before your VCR is no longer useable you need to see the Royal Shakespeare Company stage production of this wonder Dickens story. The adventures of Nicholas Nickleby are brought to life with this excellent show. Nicholas struggles to support his family and make something of himself in only the hardships that Dickens can illustrate. You will love this and the wonderful actors!! [A 9-tape VHS set] [NOTE: No longer in library collection!]

Score - 10
reviewed by Kris J.
patron of the Anderson and Bethany Branch Libraries
Mar 11, 2008

The 6th Lamentation - Cover
Average Score:
Score - 9
The 6th Lamentation
by William Brodrick

In modern times, an elderly man knocks on the door of the Larkwood Abbey, requesting sanctuary. The Church accepts the former Nazi -- with regret -- and attorney-turned-monk Father Anselm is dispatched to find out why the Church in Rome directs him to be given sanctuary now as it did in the past. At the same time, young Lucy is trying to work out her grandmother Agnes' story, knowing only that Agnes was in the same death camp that the now-safely-sheltered Nazi ran. And Agnes is dying. Putting the two stories together involves a little Dan Brown, a little John Grisham, and even a little Sue Monk Kidd but manages to stay wholly original. A real page-turner, particularly for those who like World War II mysteries.

Score - 9
reviewed by Barbara R.
patron of the Gere Branch Library
Feb 13, 2008

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