Saturday, February 4, 2017

THE GERMAN GIRL by Armando Lucas Correa

THE GERMAN GIRL  by Armando Lucas Correa
The  liner ST. LOUIS left Germany with 900 German Jews bound for Cuba in 1939. Most had left behind their fortune, their property and the heritage of many years. They carried with them signed documents allowing them to stay in Cuba until their visa numbers allowed them to move on to the US, Canada or Mexico.  The ship was not allowed to dock in Havana.
THE GERMAN GIRL follows Hannah, a young girl aboard the St. Louis, from her sheltered life in Germany until her death many years later.  Finely crafted characters people this tale of love and loss through the war, the Revolution in Cuba and the fall of the Twin Towers.  Hannah and her great niece, Anna, carry the plot to its not-quite-satisfying conclusion. Conclusion aside, this is a lovely book that sheds light on a mostly forgotten piece of World War II history and the perfidy of Cuba, the US president and the other leaders of “enlightened” nations.
Book groups will find much to discuss, especially with the anti-immigration mood of current politics.

4 of 5 stars

Thursday, February 2, 2017

A MAN CALLED OVE by Fredrik Backman

To say Ove was set in his ways would be a gross understatement. But Ove’s wife loved him and he loved her. Life was good until tragedy struck – twice. Now Ove is alone and wishes to kill himself, but life intervenes in the guise of neighbors, friends, enemies and Ove himself.
Strong characters, a sure sense of time and place and a plot that meanders to a well thought out conclusion combine to make a tale well worth reading.  Book groups will find plenty to talk about – lonely people, compromise of principle, suicide, anger, family, friendship, neighborliness, and Ove’s signature statement – “What is right is right” always – maybe.

5 of 5 stars

Wednesday, February 1, 2017


Good family recipes. Beautiful pictures on nearly every page that accurately reflect the recipe (at least as I made them). The ingredients are easy to find in a well-stocked supermarket. There is a good variety of simple and more complicated recipes. The recipes have good “kid appeal.”  Several good recipes for lunch bags for both kids and adults.

4 of 5 stars