From Elaine Pasquali
Title: Shoot Him if He Runs
Author: Stuart Woods
Stone Barrington, Holly Barker and Stone’s former NYPD partner, Dino Bacchetti, go to St. Marks, in the Carribean, to determine if Teddy Fay, a CIA fugitive is alive. Teddy, a master of disguises, has rarely been photographed. This complicates their quest. Adding to the intrigue are secrets, corruption and ex-pats . The plot moves quickly, with many twists and turns and an unexpected ending.
From Elaine Pasquali
Title: Memories Are Made of This: Dean Martin- Through His Daughter’s Eyes
Author: Deana Martin
In this autobiography, Deana Martin recounts her evolving relationship with her famous, complex and emotionally distant father. Deana was the youngest of four children from Dean’s first marriage to Betty MacDonald. Mother Betty was a loving but alcoholic mother. Consequently, the children were neglected. Once Deana and her three siblings went to live with Dean, stepmother Jeanne, and their half siblings, the quality of their lives improved immensely. Deana discusses Dean’s divorces, his affairs, and his rise to fame, as well as the death of Dean’s son, Dean Paul, and Dean’s reconciliation with Jerry Lewis. With the exception of Dean’s third wife, Cathy, there are no villains in this story, only victims. The children were victimized by their parents’ flaws. The parents fell victim to those very flaws. Through it all the children loved their father and he loved them. I have the greatest respect for Deana Martin, who is able to acknowledge her father’s flaws, praise his strengths, and celebrate her love for and pride in him. This is a “must read” for Dean Martin fans and admirers.
From Andrea Kalinowski
Author: Henry Marsh
Title: Do no harm : stories of life, death, and brain surgery
Do no harm: stories of life, death, and brain surgery by Henry Marsh was an engrossing read. One point which I found especially intriguing is that the author admits his fallibility. Henry Marsh is a British neurosurgeon. He has worked in private practice and in the NHS (National Health Service). In addition, Henry has been on both sides of the operating table at various times in his life. His own son, a mere infant at the time of the diagnosis, needed a tumor removed and Henry himself underwent surgery for retinal detachment. Henry also broke his leg. Being on both sides of the operating table has given him an understanding of the levels of patience some of his patients require as they wait for and then undergo various examinations and surgeries. Dr. Marsh admits that he has performed surgeries against his better judgment. These surgeries were mainly an appeasement to the patient and/or the patient’s families who had difficulty accepting that nothing more could be done for their loved one(s). In reading Dr. Marsh’s memoir, I got the impression that he does not feel that life should be torturous, that sometimes the best thing to do is to let go. To my way of thinking, we treat, in general, our pets with more compassion than we treat our fellow human beings. We are allowed to euthanize our pets but our fellow human beings are sometimes subjected to heroic medical efforts without consideration being given to the quality and not quantity of life. What does it matter if a person gains six months of life if those six months are spent in a vegetative state? I have always found medicine fascinating and this book furthered my knowledge base. It strengthened my enthrallment though I recognize I am not physically capable of pursuing this field, much to my dismay.