Friendships between children growing up together can be complicated as they reach teen years, especially when they are of the opposite sex. Claire and Jonas were inseparable friends as they spent their teen years together living as neighbors. Years have now past and they still have not reconciled from that last night together that changed them forever.
Claire Barclay is married to the entrepeneur and stable Art Barrington, owner of the very popular Barrington’s in New York. When her loving, step father breaks a hip and needs help as dementia sets in, Claire returns to Scotland and the home of her youth. There she is faced with the bitter memories of her last days with Jonas, as the two of them are forced to deal with Leo and his estate, Croich.
Robin Pilcher has followed in the footsteps of his very popular author/mother Rosamunde Pilcher, Grande Dame of the Romantic Novel. The Long Way Home
is the latest of his best selling novels.
I picked up this graphic novel because of the flashback scene in one of the X-Men movies about Magneto’s experience as a Jew during the Holocaust when he was a child. This graphic novel was absolutely amazing. It portrayed the Holocaust and the atrocities committed by the Nazis in a sensitive and powerful way with beautiful illustrations. It was also an interesting addition to the X-Men story and provided insight into the character of Magneto and his vehement and sometimes violent defense of mutant rights in the X-Men comics and movies. I don’t normally read the X-Men comics and graphic novels, and this graphic novel worked well as a stand-alone story. I wasn’t confused and didn’t feel like I needed background that I didn’t have. This book definitely read more like a story about a young Jewish boy growing up in Nazi Germany simply trying to survive Hitler’s Final Solution than like a superhero comic.
Sandbeck addresses a topic many have addressed before in Green Barbarians. She brings an emminently readable style, wit and humor to living green, as well as clearly having researched the lifestyle and the arguments for it in depth. Such topics as how to safely and effectively clean your kitchen and bathroom without using environmentally damaging chemicals and where to find out whether or not the makep-up you use contains lead are discussed. Some of her suggestions are less practical than others (using bread as a napkin and then eating the bread), but the stories of her experiments of both new and old ways to live sustainably are entertaining. Sandbeck definitely focuses on how people should change their habits but doesn’t always provide information about alternatives. This book is for people who want to make a few changes in their lifestyle or for those who want to make a more complete transformation into green barbarians.
Parasite positives, or “peeps,” are those infected with a parasite that turns them into light-avoiding cannibals with drastically increased life spans (they prefer to avoid the v-word). Cal is infected by his girlfriend, but it turns out he’s a natural carrier of the parasite and simply acquires excellent night vision, superhuman strength and a craving for rare meat. He joins a secret branch of the New York City government dedicated to tracking the infected but learns when he finds the woman who infected him that there’s more to the story. This novel is well thought out with scientifically based explanations for all the symptoms of vampirism. Not your average vampire novel, but it will appeal to a wide range of ages, from high school students up to adults.