Foreign Correspondent by Alan Furst

Reviewed by Paulette Aspesi

The story centers around the WWII Era and ex-patriot Italian Carlo Weisz, a journalist now stationed in Paris, and doing all he can to subvert the Fascists in Italy. The romantic interest involves an old love, Christa, living in Germany with her Prussian aristocratic husband. Not that great. Boring in many parts, convoluted in others, and the characters not terribly interesting. A lot of much better books out there on this period of history.

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆

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Cape May by Chip Cheek

Reviewed by Laura Caran

The newlyweds spend their honeymoon in Cape May, NJ. They were going to return home early until they met a group of people there who liked to party. They joined in the fun which led to betrayal of their vows and possible breakup of the marriage. It is a story about how easily marriage can be over due to poor behavior and not being faithful partners. It is a mystery until the end to see whether or not the newlyweds make it through all the shenanigans that happen on the honeymoon.

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆☆

What Janie Found by Caroline B. Cooney

Reviewed by Elaine Pasquali

More than a year ago, Janie recognized her face on a milk carton. She is still adjusting to the fact that, when she was three years old, she was kidnapped. Although reunited with her birth family, she has decided to continue living with the mother and father who raised her. When this father has a stroke, Janie discovers that he has been financially supporting his birth daughter, Janie’s kidnapper. With her ex-boyfriend, Reeve, and her birth brother, Brian, Janie sets out to avenge her father’s apparent betrayal. This young adult book is well written and engrossing.

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆☆☆

Why Didn’t They Ask Evans? by Agatha Christie

Reviewed by Elaine Pasquali

The death of a stranger who fell off a cliff sparks a mystery: Was it an accident or a murder? Bobby Jones, the son of a vicar, and Lady Frances (Frankie) Derwent, childhood friends, become suspicious and start investigating the death. Their sleuthing almost ends with their deaths. As usual, Ms. Christie crafts plot twists, red herrings and a surprise ending that keeps the reader involved. An enjoyable read.

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆☆

Defying Hitler: the Germans who Resisted Nazi Rule by Gordon Thomas & Greg Lewis

Reviewed by Paulette Aspesi

This is a story of those groups and individuals who fought Hitler and what he was doing. Almost all of them were caught and paid with their lives, many being reviled even after the war for their actions. Considered traitors by many Germans, they followed their consciences for the greater good. One in parti-cular, Kurt Gerstein, became part of the SS to be able to document what was happening, though in such a role he sometimes had to go along with what was being done or did he? What is the real answer? In light of all the new WWII books that have been published this year, we should keep in mind that recently a trial took place in Britain about denial of the Holocaust. And this is when Holocaust survivors are still alive. What will these “denial” groups achieve when all the Holocaust survivors are dead?

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆☆☆☆

Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert

Reviewed by Paulette Aspesi

This is a self-help book that needs to be savored and discussed. We not only need to be spiritual but we also have to be pragmatic. We need to stop com-plaining and do. You can not be lazy and a perfectionist. Passion is good but curiosity is better. Is it more important to be original or authentic? These concepts were the highlights of the book for me, though she had a lot of other aphorisms to think about. This book should be a part of one’s personal library.

How many stars does the book deserve?: ☆☆☆☆