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Karen Bierman Hirsh (Greenwich, CT)
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Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
von J. K. Rowling
  Gebundene Ausgabe

5.0 von 5 Sternen Fabulous Fantasy for ALL ages, 1. August 2000
While this book has certainly garnered it's fair share of reviews - I felt that I had to add one more. I have read all of the Harry Potter books and I simply loved number four. I have also never been stopped by so many strangers on the street to be asked about a book. It seems as tho everyone wanted to know how the book was and if I had read the previous three. I told everyone that still has an inner child to run out and buy this book (as well as the first three).
JK Rowling seems to be getting better with age and experience as does Harry. She has really expanded her wings in this installment of the Harry Potter series.
While the book begins exactly the same as the past three books - with Harry stuck at the Dursley's for the summer and his friends the Weasley's must rescue him so that he can go to the Quidditch world cup finals.
But this is where the similarities stop and the real imagination begins. Without saying too much - this novel is (obviously) longer than the previous three and while most people were stunned at the start of the book - I think I can safely say no one wanted it to end. I would have been happy with another hundred pages.
Things turn for Harry in number four - as he reaches adolescences he has to deal with all the ups and downs it brings with it, a first crush and a painful loss as well as taunting and trying to discover who he really is.
This book is once again a triumph for readers of all ages. So sit down and enjoy the ride.


The Raphael Affair (Art History Mystery, Band 1)
The Raphael Affair (Art History Mystery, Band 1)
von Iain Pears
  Taschenbuch

2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Mystery Steeped in History, 25. Juli 2000
While I was not a fan of Iain Pears' most popular work "The Instance of Fingerposts" I still enjoyed this earlier work "The Raphael Affair". This was not your average mystery - it was also a lesson in art history which I thought was excellent.
I gave this book three stars because I thought the mystery part of this book was lacking a bit while the premise and the characters were much more in depth. The reader is first introduced to the Italian detective, General Bottando, and his assistant, Flavia di Stefano as they are called on the scene to investigate a supposed break-in at a local church. While talking to the vagrant we discover that Jonathan Argyll is not who we are lead to believe. He is in fact an art historian from England who is in pursuit of the holy grail of the art world - an undiscovered Raphael hidden behind the work of a lesser Italian artist Mantini.
While learning about the history of Italian art we discover how it affects each character in the book - we watch as Flavia and Argyll begin to learn from one another and go in search of the real Raphael.
Amazingly enough, the reader can't help but be intrigued and to absorb some knowledge along the way as Flavia and Argyll put their reputations and their lives on the line for a woman who has been dead for a few hundred years.
I think this book is more interesting for the lessons learned than the actual mystery itself. I will certainly pick up another of Pears' Art History Mysteries as I did really enjoy 'The Raphael Affair' and I have grown to like to characters in it.


The Alchemist, Engl. ed.
The Alchemist, Engl. ed.
von Paulo Coelho
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 12,22

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4.0 von 5 Sternen a fable about the meaning of life, 24. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Alchemist, Engl. ed. (Taschenbuch)
I originally picked up The Alchemist because I thought the story looked interesting and while I found that it was, I also discovered that this novel was more than a quick read - it was a reminder of what life is all about.
The novel begins with a shepherd who dreams of traveling and finding his fortune. He can not ignore his dreams and he seeks out someone who may be able to help him discover the true meaning of these dreams. Along the way Santiago, the shepherd meets with disappointment as well as enlightenment at the oddest of places.
He learns that one must see the world with truly open eyes, one must see the signs that are all around him and are simply waiting to guide you to the truth that is inherent in all things. It is along his journey that Santiago begins to realize what his life's journey is all about.
Santiago meets with a king, a crook, an Englishman, a true love and of course, the alchemist along his way. He learns, as does the reader that not everything is as it seems on the surface and that to find true happiness one must look beyond the obvious and must learn to see the good in all of life's disappointments.
While I wished the book was a bit longer, I did find that it made me look at life in a new way. This book can be read as a story, a fable or a guide to life. Which ever way the reader chooses to look at this book, he or she will hopefully gain a new perspective on life.


The Clairvoyant Countess
The Clairvoyant Countess
von Dorothy Gilman
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 7,85

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4.0 von 5 Sternen More like an novel steeped in mystery than a regular mystery, 12. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: The Clairvoyant Countess (Taschenbuch)
I adored this book. This was the first book of Ms. Gilman's that I have read and I can't wait to get my hands on some others soon. I thought that The Clairvoyant Countess was truly well written and wonderfully entertaining.
While this is not your average mystery as the book is more about the interaction between Madame Karitska and Detective Pruden than it is about the mysteries that they solve - it is still a great read for mystery lovers.
At the start of the book the readers are introduced to the clairvoyant Countess Madame Kartiska. We learn about her gift and how she uses it, we meet some of her clients and through this we learn of their fates. The reader becomes intimately involved with some of her clients as through one of them, we also meet Detective Pruden who comes across the countess' name during an investigation.
She helps him in several different ways, she aids him in solving several crimes and she introduces him to a side of himself that he never knew. We also have the opportunity to meet several other clients that she introduces to one another and we can watch their relationships grow.
There are several mysteries woven in through the plot and the reader discovers that who dunnit isn't always the reason to read on.
The Clairvoyant Countess won't appeal to every mystery lover but for those who take the plunge it is very refreshing and highly enjoyable. IT is really a shame that Ms. Gilman has not made this into a series as well as her Mrs. Polifax series as I would love to continue to watch these characters grow.


Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married
Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married
von Marian Keyes
  Taschenbuch

4.0 von 5 Sternen Bridget Jones meets Sex in the City, 11. Juli 2000
I had such fun reading this book. The title alone made me laugh and once I opened the book I was not disappointed one bit. This is the first of Marian Keyes books that I have read and I will certainly pick up the rest. She has a wonderful witty style that comes across to the reader in abundance yet she can also write about the hard times in life that we must all go through with a sense of dolefullness and a softness that keeps the reader involved.
Lucy Sullivan is single, desperately so, works at a dull, dead end job and lives with two flatmates - Karen, the egotistical and ruthless one and Charlotte, the sweet and somewhat ditzy other one. The reader can't help but take Lucy's view of these characters.
Her office workers convince her to go to a fortune teller who announces, among other things, that Lucy will be married within the year. Lucy, like the reader, laughs this prediction off but as her officemates' predictions begin to come true one can't help but think that Lucy has a chance.
Through the book we meet her best friend Daniel, who Karen has the hots for, Meridia, her over weight and fabulous co-worker, Gus, the man of Lucy's dreams as well as her parents. Lucy tries to keep her head about her while her flighty boyfriend comes and goes, her job becomes duller and her family begins to fall apart.
But will Lucy find the man of her dreams? Will she be able to hold it all together? Only time will tell (as will readers of this book). While Marian Keyes seems to follow a bit of a pattern in the book, it doesn't seem to hold her back one bit.
I laughed along with Lucy and felt sorrow along with her. With lines like, 'If I had left then, that second, I would have missed the arrival of my anger. But no, I met it me at the door as it staggered in, gasping and panting, worn out from the crosstown journey. "Sorry I am late," it wheezed, cluthing it's chest. "Awful traffic..."' one can't help but totally know what Lucy feels like. Her struggles are very true to life as are the situations she finds herself in. If female readers don't see a bit of themselves in her I'd be surprised.
Anyone that enjoys watch 'Sex in the City' or has read and enjoyed Bridget Jones or Girls Guide to Hunting and fishing will certainly enjoy this book.


Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married
Lucy Sullivan Is Getting Married
von Marian Keyes
  Taschenbuch

2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Bridget Jones meets Sex in the City, 7. Juli 2000
I had such fun reading this book. The title alone made me laugh and once I opened the book I was not disappointed one bit. This is the first of Marian Keyes books that I have read and I will certainly pick up the rest. She has a wonderful witty style that comes across to the reader in abundance yet she can also write about the hard times in life that we must all go through with a sense of dolefullness and a softness that keeps the reader involved.
Lucy Sullivan is single, desperately so, works at a dull, dead end job and lives with two flatmates - Karen, the egotistical and ruthless one and Charlotte, the sweet and somewhat ditzy other one. The reader can't help but take Lucy's view of these characters.
Her office workers convince her to go to a fortune teller who announces, among other things, that Lucy will be married within the year. Lucy, like the reader, laughs this prediction off but as her officemates' predictions begin to come true one can't help but think that Lucy has a chance.
Through the book we meet her best friend Daniel, who Karen has the hots for, Meridia, her over weight and fabulous co-worker, Gus, the man of Lucy's dreams as well as her parents. Lucy tries to keep her head about her while her flighty boyfriend comes and goes, her job becomes duller and her family begins to fall apart.
But will Lucy find the man of her dreams? Will she be able to hold it all together? Only time will tell (as will readers of this book). While Marian Keyes seems to follow a bit of a pattern in the book, it doesn't seem to hold her back one bit.
I laughed along with Lucy and felt sorrow along with her. With lines like, 'If I had left then, that second, I would have missed the arrival of my anger. But no, I met it me at the door as it staggered in, gasping and panting, worn out from the crosstown journey. "Sorry I am late," it wheezed, cluthing it's chest. "Awful traffic..."' one can't help but totally know what Lucy feels like. Her struggles are very true to life as are the situations she finds herself in. If female readers don't see a bit of themselves in her I'd be surprised.
Anyone that enjoys watch 'Sex in the City' or has read and enjoyed Bridget Jones or Girls Guide to Hunting and fishing will certainly enjoy this book.


The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook: How to Escape from Quicksand, Wrestle an Alligator, Break Down a Door, Land a Plane...
The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook: How to Escape from Quicksand, Wrestle an Alligator, Break Down a Door, Land a Plane...
von Joshua Piven
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 12,90

1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Makes a great coffee table book AND it's educational, 29. Juni 2000
The plane is quickly losing altitude and the pilot has passed out, your car ends up in a lake and is filling up fast, a shark has latched onto your leg and just won't let go - what would you do?
These are all topics covered in The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook and the answers are not only witty but well researched. When I first picked the book up I laughed so hard just looking at the topics that I thought it was a joke and bought it. Then I actually read some of the book.
While I hope to NEVER be in any of the situations described in this book, I do know that I will be somewhat more prepared to act logically in a life threatening situation.
The motto of this book is Be Prepared and I feel a little more prepared just by having read it. While I bought it and still read it for a good laugh I highly recommend this book.
I wonder why it doesn't cover - how to save yourself from getting a stomach ache from laughing too hard?


The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing
The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing
von Melissa Bank
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 15,72

4.0 von 5 Sternen A quick and fun read tht also touches your heart, 29. Juni 2000
I finished this book in record time and must say I was disappointed to see it end. A Girls Guide to Hunting and Fishing was released last year during the "Bridget Jones" phenom and was highly lauded as being a Bridget spin-off which I don't think it is. While it deals with similar topics this book is different than Bridget and just a good.
Girls Guide is written as short stories that link together. The central character is Jane Rosenal who we see as a tender pre-teen in the first chapter/story and then get to follow through much of her young adult life (until her thirties I believe).
It is well written and each chapter takes a different tone, or as some people have said a different voice - I think this is wonderful as it shows the reader how Jane is growing up and maturing.
We watch as Jane learns about love by watching her brother date an older woman and then we watch as she falls in and out of love herself and we pine with her over falling in love and losing love and desperately wanting to meet the person of our dreams. We also watch her struggle with her career goals and choices, we watch her relationships with her family grow and change over the years and we learn a little something about friendships as well.
I think it is safe to say that most female readers will see something of themselves in Jane at one stage in her life or another. This book is funny, touching, warm and truly wonderful.
I don't want to say too much for fear of giving something away. I will say that when this book first came out I fought reading it as I thought it would be just a knock off of some of the other popular books that came out last summer and when I finally picked this book up I realized a few things - first, that this book got fabulous reviews for a very good reason and second, that I was really glad that I finally read it.
I can't wait to see what Melissa Banks writes next - maybe she'll write sequel!


Pisces Rising
Pisces Rising
von Martha C. Lawrence
  Gebundene Ausgabe

4.0 von 5 Sternen Fourth Time Is A Charm, 28. Juni 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Pisces Rising (Gebundene Ausgabe)
Once again Martha C. Lawrence delights her readers with a good, solid mystery. Elizabeth Chase returns in this fourth installment of the psychic detective series. After losing her fiancé at the end of the last book - Elizabeth is unsure as to her feelings on returning to the life of a private detective.
She is summoned from her slump by a fellow PI and asked to help out on a particularly odd and gruesome case. A murder and scalping has taken place out on the Temecu reservation at the casino being run there. The body belongs to casino owner Dan Aquillo and the supposed murderer is locked in jail and her lawyer needs Elizabeth's help as the case does not look as simple as it seems.
Elizabeth uses her psychic abilities to aide her in the case but as always, it is her fine detecting skills that really do the job. Thanks to the help of her newfound friend Sequoia, Elizabeth not only learns more about the case but she is also able to do some serious soul searching of her own.
Who killed the casino owner? Could it really have been the accused Bill Hurston, a former doctor and gambling addict who was in way over his head, or was it his ex-wife? What about Dan's nephew Wolf who has strong feelings against the casino? Or someone from the political group that is fighting against the casino? Only Elizabeth can find out and the reader enjoys every minute of the plot.
This is a great addition to the Chase series as not only does the reader get what they are used to when it comes to great plots and writing, but we get to see some major character development here. This series looks to be a good bet for the long run. I can't wait to see what trouble Chase gets herself into next!


Pisces Rising
Pisces Rising
von Martha C. Lawrence
  Gebundene Ausgabe

5.0 von 5 Sternen Fourth Time Is A Charm, 26. Juni 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Pisces Rising (Gebundene Ausgabe)
Once again Martha C. Lawrence delights her readers with a good, solid mystery. Elizabeth Chase returns in this fourth installment of the psychic detective series. After losing her fiancé at the end of the last book - Elizabeth is unsure as to her feelings on returning to the life of a private detective.
She is summoned from her slump by a fellow PI and asked to help out on a particularly odd and gruesome case. A murder and scalping has taken place out on the Temecu reservation at the casino being run there. The body belongs to casino owner Dan Aquillo and the supposed murderer is locked in jail and her lawyer needs Elizabeth's help as the case does not look as simple as it seems.
Elizabeth uses her psychic abilities to aide her in the case but as always, it is her fine detecting skills that really do the job. Thanks to the help of her newfound friend Sequoia, Elizabeth not only learns more about the case but she is also able to do some serious soul searching of her own.
Who killed the casino owner? Could it really have been the accused Bill Hurston, a former doctor and gambling addict who was in way over his head, or was it his ex-wife? What about Dan's nephew Wolf who has strong feelings against the casino? Or someone from the political group that is fighting against the casino? Only Elizabeth can find out and the reader enjoys every minute of the plot.
This is a great addition to the Chase series as not only does the reader get what they are used to when it comes to great plots and writing, but we get to see some major character development here. This series looks to be a good bet for the long run. I can't wait to see what trouble Chase gets herself into next!


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