Mockingjay

From Rebecca Segers
author: Collins, Suzanne
Mockingjay
 The final novel in the Hunger Games Trilogy finds Katniss Everdeen underground in District 13 – the supposedly defeated district in the long-ago rebellion – along with the others who’ve also been rescued.  The leaders of the new revolution want to use her as a symbol, the Mockingjay who acts as their unifying face.  District 13 has not only survived but thrived in the 75 years since the last conflict, but only under strict rules and regulations.  Katniss chafes under these strictures, even as she can see that they have a strong insurgency machine in place.  Her old friend and hunting partner, Gale, is less concerned and more willing to throw his energies into the fight.  Meanwhile, her former partner and “fiance,” Peeta, has been captured by the Capitol and is being used as a pawn in their denunciation of the uprising.  As the battles rage, ethical questions are raised and wrestled with, in the midst of a world that is very different and yet has deep similarities to our own.  Once again, Suzanne Collins has woven a fast-paced engaging tale that keeps the reader guessing, as well as rooting for a better future for the characters that s/he has come to love over the course of the trilogy.

Murder on a Midsummer Night

From Francine Schwarz
author: Greenwood, Kerry
Murder on a Midsummer Night
 The is a Phryne Fisher Mystery where she is trying to solve two mysteries at the same time.  The book was set in Austrialia in a different era so I was able to get a taste of what it was like to live in Austrialia in the 1920s (as a wealthy person).  At times some of the slang was tricky but overall the book was a fun read.

Under the Tuscan Sun

From Francine Schwarz
author: Mayes, Frances
Under the Tuscan Sun
Although the plot of the book was different from the movie’s, her descriptions of Cortona made me feel as if I was in Tuscany.  So real is her writing that I found myself craving espresso during the day and cappuccino in the evening.  I have renewed interests in my vegetable garden and in Italian wines.  It you want a trip to Italy without leaving the States read this book!

Nemesis

From Judith Schroback
author: Roth, philip
Nemesis
 This is a sad story about choices we make in our lives.  It takes place in the early 40’s and focuses primarily on the polio epidemic.  The tragedy hit many families and Mr. ROth is able to make us feel the pain of this awful disease and its consequences.  People’s belief in God is questioned as so many youngsters and their families deal with the horrors and hopelessness of polio.