The Queen of Spades & Other Stories by Alexander Pushkin

Reviewed by Paulette Aspesi

This book is a series of six short stories. They cover a range of emotions and interesting endings. I would say that Pushkin is very like a Russian 19th century W. Somerset Maugham. Each story has a twist to it and each is a gem in its own way. The saddest was The Postmaster. I liked The Snowstorm the best – always a sucker for a happy ending.

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

Under Currents by Nora Roberts

Reviewed by Paulette Aspesi

A typical Roberts book with a good plot, good characters and a good ending. The basic theme is survival resulting from child and spousal abuse. It takes place in the town of Lakeview where Zane has returned after years away at college and pursuing his law degree. As a youth, his father had been terribly abusive but because he was a well-respected doctor and his wife aided and supported his abuse — even to herself — it was kept hidden until he was almost killed.
Darby had a good childhood with her single mother, but marriage to a “crazy” man led to her finding the courage to leave him. It will all culminate in them finding each other, but not being allowed to live in happiness until the ghosts of their pasts are taken care of. Another great summer read.

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