Category: Book reviews

Heather Sharfeddin’s DAMAGED GOODS, review for The Oregonian

Heather Sharfeddin’s fourth novel, “Damaged Goods,” tells the nimble and compact story of an auctioneer who comes to understand the meaning of “priceless.” Three months after a traumatic brain injury, Hershel Swift struggles to remember everything from basic words to how he once ran his business. His old self is an alien personality whom everyone … Read More »

Review of “Shanghai Girls,” by Lisa See

In her sixth novel, “Shanghai Girls,” Lisa See returns to historical China — for her, familiar terrain. This time she begins in 1937 Shanghai, the “Paris of Asia,” in its splendid, unsuspecting weeks before the Japanese invasion. See, who has already written two best-sellers about women who chafe against tradition, now explores a slightly different … Read More »

Review of “A Mercy” by Toni Morrison

American geography is often simplified into two colors along state lines, but Nobel laureate Toni Morrison returns to our variegated past in her new novel, “A Mercy.” The moveable feast of Native American, Dutch, French, Spanish, English and parochial territories is at once alien and intimate, for here is the primordial muck of commerce from … Read More »

Selected book reviews

All reviews are published in The Oregonian. More to be scanned and posted soon–check back! The Mercy Papers, Robin Romm. (January 2009) The Enchantress of Florence, Salman Rushdie. (June 2008) The Translator, Daoud Hari. (April 2008) A Free Life, Ha Jin. (November 2007) The Stylist, Cai Emmons. (October 2007) A Man of No Moon, Jenny … Read More »