Category: Contemporary literary fiction

  • When words come to life

    Bob Moyer says a lot in a few words about a book that does the same. Reviewed by Robert P. Moyer KICK THE LATCH. By Kathryn Scanlan. New Directions. 144 pages. $17.95. Kathryn Scanlan writes minimalist fiction. Not short stories. Not flash fiction. Minimalist fiction. She eschews verbiage, and dismisses the drape of narrative novelists usually […]

  • Charlie Lovett’s new novel is a thriller, for sure

    Charlie Lovett turns his considerable talents to writing an international thriller, with results that measure up to his fans’ high expectations. Reviewed by Linda C. Brinson THE ENIGMA AFFAIR.  By Charlie Lovett. Blackstone Publishing, 350 pages, $26.99, hardcover. Through four fine novels now, Charlie Lovett has proved that he is an imaginative, skilled, thoughtful, intelligent […]

  • A gem of a Southern novel

    Reviewed by Linda C. Brinson SOUTH OF HEAVEN. By Patti Frye Meredith. Mint Hill Books, Main Street Rag Publishing Company. $17.95, paperback. Patti Frye Meredith’s South of Heaven is a gem of a Southern novel, one of those rare books that captures life in the South with all its contradictions and nuances without turning characters […]

  • Mystery, history and the lives of women

    Reviewed by Linda C. Brinson ASHTON HALL. By Lauren Belfer. Penguin Random House Audio. Read by Jayne Entwhistle and Kristen Sieh. 12 hours, 38 minutes. Also available in hardback from Ballantine Books. Don’t start listening to (or reading) this book unless you have some time to spare. Once you start, you won’t want to stop. […]

  • Dark, eerie – and beautiful

    Paul O’Connor may have grown up in Connecticut, gone to college in Indiana and spent many productive decades in North Carolina, but there’s a lot of Ireland in him. He’s discovered a book by an Irish author that’s not exactly new – published in 2017 – and not usually what would be Paul’s cup of […]

  • When things get really strange…

    Paul O’Connor reviews a novel that transcends categories while revealing a lot about human nature. Reviewed by Paul T. O’Connor THE ANOMALY. By Herve’ Le Tellier. Translated by Adriana Hunter. Other Press. 391 pp. $16.95, softcover. On March 10, 2021, Air France Flight 006, high above international waters off the coast of Nova Scotia, encounters […]

  • Up to the challenge

    Reviewed by Paul T. O’Connor CLOUD CUCKOO LAND. By Anthony Doerr. Scribner. 622 pages. $30, hardcover. In his latest novel, Anthony Doerr has challenged himself with a monumental task: Establish three distinct storylines, set apart from each other by more than 700 years, two continents and millions of miles of outer space, and then draw […]

  • Tarheel troubadour

    Bob Moyer has returned from his latest adventures to give us another fine book review.   Reviewed by Robert P. Moyer IN THE VALLEY. By Ron Rash. Doubleday. 220 pages. $26.95   There’s gold in them thar mountains. North Carolina mountains, that is, and Ron Rash knows how to mine it. Critics frequently call him an […]

  • What he left behind

    Bob Moyer takes on a different kind of mystery – not a whodunit, but a look at the strange realm of human love and relationships. Reviewed by Robert P. Moyer MONOGAMY. By Sue Miller. Harper. 338 pages. $28.99     In this fine novel, filled with authentic detail of time, place and demographics, the main […]

  • Choosing the words, telling the stories

    Reviewed by Linda C. Brinson THE DICTIONARY OF LOST WORDS. By Pip Williams. Ballantine Books. 371 pages. $28. Pip Williams’ remarkable debut novel is imaginative, original, intelligent and delightful. The Dictionary of Lost Words is also a book for our times – really, a book for all times. The questions it raises about the power […]