Home > What I've Read > Book Reviews in Review: 2017

Book Reviews in Review: 2017

Here are my favorite five of the books I reviewed in 2017:

Being Written

As one who barely manages to control or corral the characters I put to page, I was hooked from the moment I read the description of Being Written.  The idea of a minor character subverting an author’s plot line for his own gain was not only intriguing, but made the writer in me curious how Conescu would pull it off.  Well, he did and it was great fun.  While some may not care for the ending, I found it absolutely perfect for the story. (5 of 5 Stars)

Being Written on Amazon.com

 

An extremely pleasant surprise, this book is not a traditional history of aviation, cataloging the different makes and models of aircraft through the years. Instead, Jay Spenser has authored the “biography” of a thing. And just as a man’s character can be revealed through the trajectory of events and experiences on his path from youth to adulthood, the Boeing 787 “Dreamliner” is understood as the “grown-up” Wright Flyer achieved through a lifetime of technological advances. As a pilot and aviation aficionado, I came away seeing the airplane in a new light and perspective. (5 of 5 Stars)

Link to The Airplane on Amazon

 

An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic by [Mendelsohn, Daniel]

While mothers are a child’s “safe space,” fathers — contrary to their current oafish pop culture stereotype ala Homer Simpson — are all too often familial labyrinths.  I guess it’s easier to make fun of something than admit you can’t really figure it out.  Daniel Mendelsohn’s paternal “odyssey” uses the other famous Homer’s epic as a template to get a measure of the kind of man his father really was.  If you’re a fan of The Odyssey (and I am), this book is an intriguing and enlightening look at both a classic of literature and the tangled relationships between fathers and sons.  (5 of 5 stars)

Link to An Odyssey: A Father, a Son and an Epic on Amazon.com

I was cruising along in this bio and unexpectedly slammed head-on into the epilogue–well before Wilbur died and all of the patent hassles with Glenn Curtiss, et al.  This book is less a history than an outstanding tribute to the Wright Brothers’ accomplishment, ending in 1910 with the first and only flight Wilbur and Orville ever made together at the pinnacle of their acclaim, having showcased their Flyer in Europe and America. Being familiar with their story, what McCullough really captured for me was the impact on the times had by an invention we now take for granted.  (5 of 5 Stars)

The Wright Brothers on Amazon.com

 

This was a fun read — but, of course, I’m a sucker for crosscut kinds of stories:  Hints from Heloise meets Igor the Assassin.  It reminded me a lot of my second favorite Kathleen Turner movie, Serial Mom. Grisly good fun with enough twists and turns to leave Bond, James Bond, scratching his head.   (4 of 5 Stars)

The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook on Amazon.com

 

 

 

 

 

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