Neal Wyatt--Reviews
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Neal Wyatt--Reviews Neal Wyatt--Reviews Presentation Transcript

  • Reviews
  • Reviews
    • Practice Appeal
    • Make Connections Beyond Personal Reading
  • BookList: / *Starred Review* / Take a pinch of marigold to stimulate affection, add a dash of snapdragon to repel evil influences, finish with a generous helping of rose petals to encourage love , then stand back and let nature take its course. It may be the recipe for Claire Waverley's successful catering business, but when it comes to working its magic on her own love life, she seems to be immune to the charms found only in the plants that have always grown behind the Waverley mansion. Like generations of Waverley women before her, Claire has accepted her family's mysterious gifts, while her estranged sister, Sydney, could not run away from them fast enough. Knowing it's just a matter of time before her abusive boyfriend finally kills her, however, Sydney escapes with her young daughter back home to the only place she knows she'll be safe. Spellbindingly charming, Allen's impressively accomplished debut novel will bewitch fans of Alice Hoffman and Laura Esquivel, as her entrancing brand of magic realism nimbly blends the evanescent desires of hopeless romantics with the inherent wariness of those who have been hurt once too often. -- Haggas, Carol (Reviewed 07-01-2007) (Booklist, vol 103, number 21, p28) reprinted courtesy of Booklist
  • Library Journal: / * Starred Review * / With enough grassroots buzz, Allen's mainstream debut (she's published romances under the nom de plume Katie Gallagher) could become a best seller. This captivating concoction, which has strong fairytale elements , is set in a small town in western North Carolina. The Waverley women have always had unusual talents, and newly reconciled half sisters Claire (a caterer) and Sydney (a hairdresser) are no exception. Sydney's five-year-old daughter, Bay, has the gift of knowing where things belong. Their elder cousin, Evanelle, has the gift of anticipation, compelled blindly to give items whose value is later revealed. The Waverleys also have an old tree whose apples are so special that a locked fence encloses their garden. To reveal much more about this charming story of love, fate, and family would be to dilute its magic. It's refreshing to find a Southern novel that doesn't depend on folksy humor or stereotypes but instead on the imaginative use of magical realism. Just buy it, read it, and recommend it to others. For any fiction collection. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 5/1/07.]—Rebecca Kelm, Northern Kentucky Univ. Lib., Highland Heights --Rebecca Kelm (Reviewed July 15, 2007) (Library Journal, vol 132, issue 12, p72) reprinted courtesy of Library Journal.
  • BookList: / *Starred Review* / Coming off Gone Tomorrow (2009), one of the very best among his 13 high-octane thrillers , Child keeps his foot hard on the throttle. There’s always a ticking clock in the background whenever our off-the-grid hero, Jack Reacher, finds a wrong that needs righting, but this time the clock drives the narrative. When a lawyer arrives at a South Dakota prison to visit a client, we’re told that it’s five minutes to three in the afternoon, “exactly 61 hours before it happened.” Meanwhile, Reacher wakes up from a nap to discover that the tour bus on which he’s cadged a ride is spinning out of control on an icy bridge. By the time he helps the injured senior citizens aboard the bus, there are 59 hours left. But we still don’t know what we’re waiting for. The clock continues to tick as Reacher, now without a ride, lands in Boulton, South Dakota, and finds himself helping out the local police as they attempt to protect a key witness in an upcoming drug trial. Then there’s the matter of the peculiar underground installation outside of town, formerly a military outpost but now apparently housing a meth lab. As the hours fall away and the tension builds, we learn more about the installation, the local cops, and a Mexican drug lord whose own clock is ticking in sync with Reacher’s, but we’re still not prepared for what happens when the sixty-first hour arrives. One expects a novel organized around a clock to be plot driven, and that’s certainly true here. But, as always, Child delivers enough juicy details about the landscape, the characters, and Reacher’s idiosyncrasies to give the story texture and to lower our pulse rates, if only momentarily. Even without the apparently game-changing finale, this is Child in top form , but isn’t he always? -- Ott, Bill (Reviewed 02-15-2010) (Booklist, vol 106, number 12, p4) reprinted courtesy of Booklist
  • Library Journal: / * Starred Review * / Large and deadly, footloose former army major Jack Reacher returns in his 14th outing (after Gone Tomorrow ). This time, the retired military cop gets stranded by a ferocious blizzard in the town of Bolton, SD. Reacher has to deal with a hired assassin, a prison breakout, a mob of biker thugs, a secret government installation, a clutch of senior citizen tourists who thought a frigid vacation in South Dakota would save money, and a witness who needs protection from a murderous drug lord from Mexico. Just an ordinary day on the job for Reacher as the "61 hours" count down to an exciting climax . VERDICT Child's protagonist is a wandering knight who always finds trouble and inevitably solves it, with satisfying violence. As usual, Child's writing is superb. Not only is this thriller believable, but the descriptions of the blizzard will make readers want to hug their furnaces. Fast paced and exciting, this is highly recommended for thriller fans. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 1/10; library marketing.]—Robert Conroy, Warren, MI --Robert Conroy (Reviewed March 15, 2010) (Library Journal, vol 135, issue 5, p92) reprinted courtesy of Library Journal
  • BookList: Few medieval battles are as well known as the Battle of Agincourt, and few contemporary writers are as qualified as Cornwell to re-create such a legendary conflict. Anyone who has read or seen Shakespeare's Henry V is familiar with the remarkable tale of the woefully outnumbered English army's stirring victory against vastly superior French forces on October 25, 1415 (St. Crispin's Day). In his own inimitable style, Cornwell breathes new life into the military campaign that revolutionized warfare and heralded the beginning of the end of the Hundred Years' War. At the heart of Cornwell's retelling is longbowman Nicholas Hook, an intriguing antihero with a questionable past, whose straightforward soldier's viewpoint sheds intimate light on the complexities and the attendant gore and the glory of the battlefield. This fine stand-alone from the author of the multivolume Sharpe novels and the Saxon Tales is a must-read for fans of authentically detailed historical fiction who like their battle scenes drawn with a realistically bold, brutal, and bloody strokes. -- Flanagan, Margaret (Reviewed 10-15-2008) (Booklist, vol 105, number 4, p4) reprinted courtesy of Booklist
  • Library Journal: Cornwell, best known for historical series like the Sharpe novels and the "Saxon Tales," has written a stand-alone work that focuses on one of England's greatest military victories, the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, as seen by archer Nicholas Hook. Hook joins the army to avoid being hanged after attacking a priest and is immediately sent to defend the English garrison at the besieged French town of Soissons. During the carnage following the town's surrender, he rescues a Frenchwoman, Melisande, from marauding troops. The romance that develops between them adds an element of tension to the narrative because Hook must protect her from an array of dangers. The British army resumes battle with a siege of Harfleur and then sets out for Calais but is forced into a seemingly hopeless showdown with French troops near the town of Agincourt. Cornwell bases the final battle scene on the widely held belief that the English were greatly outnumbered by the French and comes up with a plausible scenario for an English victory. Though 464 pages long, this novel never feels inflated or meandering and perfectly captures the spirit of 15th-century Europe. Most impressive, Cornwell has produced a military adventure with a subtle but powerful antiwar tone, filled with dramatic battle scenes that unsparingly convey the horrors and futility of the Agincourt campaign. Recommended for all libraries.—Douglas Southard, CRA International Inc., Boston --Douglas Southard (Reviewed November 15, 2008) (Library Journal, vol 133, issue 19, p59) reprinted courtesy of Library Journal
  • BookList: Few medieval battles are as well known as the Battle of Agincourt , and few contemporary writers are as qualified as Cornwell to re-create such a legendary conflict. Anyone who has read or seen Shakespeare's Henry V is familiar with the remarkable tale of the woefully outnumbered English army's stirring victory against vastly superior French forces on October 25, 1415 (St. Crispin's Day). In his own inimitable style, Cornwell breathes new life into the military campaign that revolutionized warfare and heralded the beginning of the end of the Hundred Years' War. At the heart of Cornwell's retelling is longbowman Nicholas Hook, an intriguing antihero with a questionable past, whose straightforward soldier's viewpoint sheds intimate light on the complexities and the attendant gore and the glory of the battlefield. This fine stand-alone from the author of the multivolume Sharpe novels and the Saxon Tales is a must-read for fans of authentically detailed historical fiction who like their battle scenes drawn with a realistically bold, brutal, and bloody strokes . -- Flanagan, Margaret (Reviewed 10-15-2008) (Booklist, vol 105, number 4, p4) reprinted courtesy of Booklist
  • Library Journal: Cornwell, best known for historical series like the Sharpe novels and the "Saxon Tales," has written a stand-alone work that focuses on one of England's greatest military victories, the Battle of Agincourt in 1415 , as seen by archer Nicholas Hook. Hook joins the army to avoid being hanged after attacking a priest and is immediately sent to defend the English garrison at the besieged French town of Soissons. During the carnage following the town's surrender, he rescues a Frenchwoman, Melisande, from marauding troops. The romance that develops between them adds an element of tension to the narrative because Hook must protect her from an array of dangers. The British army resumes battle with a siege of Harfleur and then sets out for Calais but is forced into a seemingly hopeless showdown with French troops near the town of Agincourt. Cornwell bases the final battle scene on the widely held belief that the English were greatly outnumbered by the French and comes up with a plausible scenario for an English victory. Though 464 pages long, this novel never feels inflated or meandering and perfectly captures the spirit of 15th-century Europe. Most impressive, Cornwell has produced a military adventure with a subtle but powerful antiwar tone, filled with dramatic battle scenes that unsparingly convey the horrors and futility of the Agincourt campaign. Recommended for all libraries.—Douglas Southard, CRA International Inc., Boston --Douglas Southard (Reviewed November 15, 2008) (Library Journal, vol 133, issue 19, p59) reprinted courtesy of Library Journal
  • Reviews Review
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