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Creating Your Think and Grow Rich Master Mind: How to Form Powerful Master Mind Groups and Partnerships: A Penguin eSpecial fro m Tarcher

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No one does contemporary human relations in the US better than O'Nan. In O'Nan's skilled hands, the main character Emily, an aging, widow with lots of memories and little in the way of excitement, makes a fascinating read. O'Nan shines the light on the main character and the social tendrils that connect her to the world and in so doing shines the light also on all of our human relationships. A page turner where almost nothing major happens.
Before I Go To Sleep: A Novel

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Rare form of amnesia where the person loses their memory each day after sleeping is the set up for this story of a middle age woman who wakes up in bed with a husband she does not recognize and a life that is a blank slate. As she struggles to gain a piece of her lost memories the reader has no more idea of who to trust than the main character--which makes for some page turning moments. In the end it is a post modern exercise in that each new discovery leads to a different hallway of mirrors.
Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

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Here is a book that I actually liked better than I expected to. The adventure described by the author would be pretty run of the mill for a seasoned hiker. However, for a brand new novice, with major emotional problems, it becomes an incredible journey. I found myself constantly thinking "please let me help you repack your back pack and select your hiking boots for you! Because of the author's inexperience
The Sense of an Ending

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This short book is filled with insightful quotes. For example: "It strikes me that this may be one of the differences between youth and age: when we are young, we invent different futures for ourselves; when we are old, we invent different pasts for others. Starting with the fine, ambiguous title the book explores how memory, and more generally history, is an ephemeral product held in the minds of the interested parties. No two individuals share the same views exactly and as we age we seize on a narrative that seldom reflects reality. If we are lucky, we live long enough to have our view of what happened be the last one that survives. While the book focuses on the small, personal histories of a small group of childhood friends, the complexities of recording accurately what is real and what is artifice apply much more broadly, to the whole of the historical enterprise.
Claire Messud's The Emperor's Children

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Engaging story of a group of individuals linked in various ways to New York City and going through a variety of personal challenges and crises, many of which are borne out of affluence. Downside: I didnt really like any of the characters. Upside: the author does a great job of blending all of the various threads into a seamless whole that continues to move forward. And there are a couple of plot twists that truly surprised.
The Stonecutter: A Novel

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Interesting twist on the whodunit genre. Lackberg goes into great detail of the lives of all of the individuals connected to the murder, both at present and far into the past. By expanding the social net to include so many indviduals she provides a whole list of possible suspects. She also runs two plots forward--one contemporary and one historical and as the historical plot moves forward in time, the reader can also think about how the two plots will converge. I would say a defniite cut above the whodunit pack.
The Leopard: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 6)

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This is a page turner--little doubt about that. But felt a bit like a Chinese food page turner--did not stick with me very long. This is the second in the series that I have read. Good, entertaining beach read with plenty of twists and turns but will not change your life.
Perdida

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I enjoyed the " he said-she said" structure of this book and found the expectations of what it means for men and women in marriage were provocative. My main problem with the book is that I didnt really like either of the self centered, narcissists that were at the heart of the story. They actually deserve each other! Then again, in letting the couple tell their tale, the author also cleverly exposes how tenuous the platform on which marriage rests really is.
Half-Blood Blues: A Novel

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I warmed to this book as I got into it. The novely of thinking about how jazz musicians were treated in pre and post Nazi Germany was interesting--espeically given how reverent Germans come to be when it comes to jazz. Also enjoyed the references to actual Jazz legends. A few of the plot twists seemed unlikely and this was a bit of a distraction, but overall, enjoyed the read.
Reversal

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Hey, it wont change your life, but very well crafted lawyer novel that gathers momentum from start to finish. Connelly injects plenty of tension and also provides some great insights into the down and dirty operation of the criminal justice system.
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