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Click to search this book in our catalog The Book Of Magic
by Alice Hoffman

Library Journal In Sisters of the Great War, Missouri Review Editors' Prize winner Feldman crafts the story of ambitious young American Ruth Duncan—she wants to be a doctor—and her shy sister, Elise, who volunteer their services in war-torn 1914 Europe and discover love, nurse Ruth with an Englishman in the medical corps and Elise with another woman in the ambulance corps (50,000-copy first printing). In The Book of Magic, which concludes Hoffman's "Practical Magic" series, three generations of Owens women and a long-lost brother attempt to break the curse that has bound their family since Maria Owens practiced the Unnamed Art centuries ago (200,000-copy first printing). Launched with lots of in-house love, multi-AP-award-winning Miller's The Memoirs of Stockholm Sven features a young man who seeks adventure by moving to an Arctic archipelago in 1916, then withdraws further to an isolated fjord, where he's sustained by a loyal dog and letters from home until the arrival of an unexpected visitor (50,000-copy first printing). In a follow-up to Morris's multi-million-best-selling The Tattooist of Auschwitz and Cilka's Journey, Three Sisters—Livia, Magda, and Cibi—survive Auschwitz and escape the Germans during the 1945 death march from the camp (500,000-copy first printing). In Saab's debut, Polish resistance fighter Maria is imprisoned in Auschwitz and forced by brutal camp deputy Fritzsch to play chess for his entertainment—and her life; the war's approaching resolution brings Maria closer to The Last Checkmate and a chance to avenge the deaths of her family (150,000-copy paperback and 30,000-copy hardcover first printing). Following up The Wicked Redhead with The Wicked Widow, Williams zigzags between 1925 New York, where brassy, flashy flapper Geneva "Gin" Kelly happily settles into a high-society marriage to (of all things) a Prohibition agent, and 1998, with troubled Ella Dommerich relying on Gin's ghostly help when her aunt pushes her to discover anything nasty she can about an old family enemy running for president (75,000-copy paperback and 30,000-copy hardcover first printing).

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Kirkus In the conclusion to Hoffmans Practical Magic series, a present-day family of witches and healers wages a final battle against the curse that has plagued them since 1680.Thanks to an ancestors bitter curse, anyone who's been in love with and/or been loved by an Owens family member for the last 300 years has met death and tragedy (with rare exceptions involving risks and personal sacrifice). Hoffmans prequel, Magic Lessons(2020), detailed the origin of the curse. In this series finale, Hoffman brings the three most recent generations together: sisters Sally and Gillian, whose youthful adventures introduced the series in Practical Magic (1995); their beloved elderly aunts, Jet and Franny, and long-lost uncle Vincent, children themselves in 1960s Manhattan in Rules of Magic(2017); and Sallys daughters, Kylie and Antonia, whom shes shielded from knowledge of their unusual heritage and its curse. The novel opens with Jet about to die, aware she has no time to use the knowledge shes recently gained to end the curse herself. Instead, she leaves clues that send her survivors on a circuitous path involving a mysterious book filled with magic that could be dangerous in the wrong hands. Then an accident makes the need to break the curse acute. What follows is a novel overripe with plot twists, lofty romances, and some ugly violence along with detailed magic recipes, enjoyably sly literary references, and somewhat repetitive memories of key moments from the previous volumes. While centered in the Massachusetts town where the Owens family moved in the 17th century, the novel travels to current-day England (briefly detouring to France) and becomes a battle of good versus evil. The Owens womens greatest challenge is knowing whom to trustor love. Hoffman strongly hints that the danger arising when someone chooses incorrectly is less a matter of magic than psychology and morality. Ultimately, for better or worse, each Owens woman must face her fear of love. For all the talk of magic, the message here is that personal courage and the capacity to love are the deepest sources of an individuals power.An overly rich treacle tart, sweet and flavorful but hard to get through. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Kirkus In the conclusion to Hoffman’s Practical Magic series, a present-day family of witches and healers wages a final battle against the curse that has plagued them since 1680. Thanks to an ancestor’s bitter curse, anyone who's been in love with and/or been loved by an Owens family member for the last 300 years has met death and tragedy (with rare exceptions involving risks and personal sacrifice). Hoffman’s prequel, Magic Lessons (2020), detailed the origin of the curse. In this series finale, Hoffman brings the three most recent generations together: sisters Sally and Gillian, whose youthful adventures introduced the series in Practical Magic (1995); their beloved elderly aunts, Jet and Franny, and long-lost uncle Vincent, children themselves in 1960s Manhattan in Rules of Magic (2017); and Sally’s daughters, Kylie and Antonia, whom she’s shielded from knowledge of their unusual heritage and its curse. The novel opens with Jet about to die, aware she has no time to use the knowledge she’s recently gained to end the curse herself. Instead, she leaves clues that send her survivors on a circuitous path involving a mysterious book filled with magic that could be dangerous in the wrong hands. Then an accident makes the need to break the curse acute. What follows is a novel overripe with plot twists, lofty romances, and some ugly violence along with detailed magic recipes, enjoyably sly literary references, and somewhat repetitive memories of key moments from the previous volumes. While centered in the Massachusetts town where the Owens family moved in the 17th century, the novel travels to current-day England (briefly detouring to France) and becomes a battle of good versus evil. The Owens women’s greatest challenge is knowing whom to trust—or love. Hoffman strongly hints that the danger arising when someone chooses incorrectly is less a matter of magic than psychology and morality. Ultimately, for better or worse, each Owens woman must face her fear of love. For all the talk of magic, the message here is that personal courage and the capacity to love are the deepest sources of an individual’s power. An overly rich treacle tart, sweet and flavorful but hard to get through. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Book list With witches in their bloodline for generations, the Owens family is cursed in love. They must live by harsh rules: never declare your love and never marry. That's the only way an Owens can, perhaps, escape the curse. Kylie and Antonia, children of twice-widowed Sally, are kept ignorant of their ancestry in a vain attempt to provide a normal life. But everything unravels when Kylie’s soulmate teeters on the verge of death. Armed with The Book of the Raven and newly realized powers, Kylie resorts to the dark arts, not realizing that a terrible price will be exacted. Hoffman's previous novel, Magic Lessons (2020), was a prequel about how Maria Owens, in love with the wrong man, seeded the family curse during the 1600s. Here Hoffman brings the Owens family full circle in a tale of finely wrought female relationships, magic, and love. The generations reflect a societal refrain: the younger ones are headstrong and heedless; the elders are stoic and self-sacrificing, their characters and characterization stronger. The result is a magical realist tale rich in fresh Owens clan lore, providing a hopeful and satisfying conclusion to Hoffman's beloved Practical Magic series.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Readers will be eager for Hoffman's concluding title in the long-cherished Practical Magic series.

From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Book list With witches in their bloodline for generations, the Owens family is cursed in love. They must live by harsh rules: never declare your love and never marry. That's the only way an Owens can, perhaps, escape the curse. Kylie and Antonia, children of twice-widowed Sally, are kept ignorant of their ancestry in a vain attempt to provide a normal life. But everything unravels when Kylie’s soulmate teeters on the verge of death. Armed with The Book of the Raven and newly realized powers, Kylie resorts to the dark arts, not realizing that a terrible price will be exacted. Hoffman's previous novel, Magic Lessons (2020), was a prequel about how Maria Owens, in love with the wrong man, seeded the family curse during the 1600s. Here Hoffman brings the Owens family full circle in a tale of finely wrought female relationships, magic, and love. The generations reflect a societal refrain: the younger ones are headstrong and heedless; the elders are stoic and self-sacrificing, their characters and characterization stronger. The result is a magical realist tale rich in fresh Owens clan lore, providing a hopeful and satisfying conclusion to Hoffman's beloved Practical Magic series.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Readers will be eager for Hoffman's concluding title in the long-cherished Practical Magic series.

From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly Hoffman concludes her Practical Magic series about the Owens family women, cursed by 17th-century ancestor Maria, with an illuminating story of their inherited witchcraft. In present-day Massachusetts, octogenarian Jet Owens sees the death watch beetle, a sign that she has seven days to live. She pulls The Book of the Raven from her library—a “dark spell-book” that had corrupted Maria’s daughter, Faith. The book contains the secret for how to end the family curse, which has caused the men they fall in love with to die, and its discovery sets off a series of cataclysmic events. Hoffman focuses primarily on Jet’s niece, Sally, who quashed her magical powers, and Sally’s daughters Kylie and Antonia, from whom Sally hid the family’s unusual heritage. After Kylie’s fiancée, Gideon, has a life-threatening car accident, she learns about the curse and travels to London where the book was made, in search of answers that could save Gideon. Meanwhile, Antonia, a lesbian, is pregnant and plans to raise the baby with a gay couple, one of whom is the father. Hoffman runs through the Owens family history over the centuries, and though the accounts of bloodlines and varied relationships can be confusing, the story brims with bewitching encounters and suspenseful conflicts revolving around good magic versus bad magic. Hoffman brings satisfying closure to the Owens saga. (Oct.)

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Oprah's Book Club
Click to search this book in our catalog The Measure of a Man: A Spiritual Autobiography
by Sidney Poitier

Library Journal Winner of this year's Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album, this production is a delight in every way, with the narration by Poitier appropriately dramatic and mellifluous. The story of his meteoric and fated rise to fame as a successful actor respected by his peers almost belies his hardscrabble beginnings on Cat Island off the coast of the Bahamas. And the "lucky star" Poitier falls under is actually the common denominator among all successful people: a willingness to work harder, and an innate resourcefulness, including the ability to listen to one's own instincts and to move when the time is right. If this sounds philosophical, it is; the book is much more than another celebrity memoir. It is not only Poitier's reflection on a long life in the world of arts and entertainment but also a statement of his personal views on what it means to be a good man, honed in discussions with friends and fellow travelers on life's journey who were themselves of a philosophical frame of mind. Highly recommended. Mark Pumphrey, Polk Cty. P.L., Columbus, NC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publishers Weekly Poitier's second memoir retains the soul-searching candor that marked his first (This Life, 1980), but lacks its narrative drive. After painting an idyllic portrait of his youth on Cat Island in the Bahamas ("a place of purity"), Poitier traces his path to Hollywood stardom with frustratingly broad strokes. (For the details of Poitier's journey, and his involvement in the civil rights movement, readers are left to consult his earlier work.) Poitier demonstrates the strength of his character with moving stories about his struggles with racism, and he includes anecdotes about his roles in such memorable productions as A Raisin in the Sun, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, In the Heat of the Night and A Patch of Blue. But in the end, this book reads like the random thoughts of a sincere and honorable celebrity channeled through the pen of an experienced and jaded ghostwriter. As an autobiography, it is "spiritual" only in the loosest sense of the term. Poitier's relationship with God, whom he conceives in Hollywood terms as a vague cosmic consciousness, is not mentioned until one of the last chapters of the book. Throughout, he offers moralizing reflections on rage, forgiveness ("a sacred process"), marriage, parenting, prostate cancer and the burning question of whether Sidney Poitier has a dark side. "I had come to believe a little bit in my own press clippings," he notes, reflecting on his reputation as a man of unusual integrity and virtue; for better and for worse, this book contains little to complicate that belief. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Publishers Weekly Given the personal nature of this narrative, it's impossible to imagine hearing anyone other than Poitier, with his distinctive, resonant voice and perfect enunciation, tell the story. In his second memoir Poitier talks about his childhood in the Caribbean, where he was terribly poor by American standards, but quite happy, swimming and climbing all he could. One of eight kids, Poitier was sent to live with an older brother in Miami when he started to get into difficulties as a teen. But frustrated by his inability to earn a living and by the disparaging way whites treated him, Poitier left Miami for New York. There he worked as a dishwasher, started a drama class and launched a celebrated acting career that led to starring roles in such classics as To Sir, with Love and Raisin in the Sun. Poitier's rendition of these events is so moving that listeners will wish this audio adaptation were twice as long. Simultaneous release with the Harper San Francisco hardcover (Forecasts, May 1). (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Publishers Weekly Poitier's second memoir retains the soul-searching candor that marked his first (This Life, 1980), but lacks its narrative drive. After painting an idyllic portrait of his youth on Cat Island in the Bahamas ("a place of purity"), Poitier traces his path to Hollywood stardom with frustratingly broad strokes. (For the details of Poitier's journey, and his involvement in the civil rights movement, readers are left to consult his earlier work.) Poitier demonstrates the strength of his character with moving stories about his struggles with racism, and he includes anecdotes about his roles in such memorable productions as A Raisin in the Sun, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, In the Heat of the Night and A Patch of Blue. But in the end, this book reads like the random thoughts of a sincere and honorable celebrity channeled through the pen of an experienced and jaded ghostwriter. As an autobiography, it is "spiritual" only in the loosest sense of the term. Poitier's relationship with God, whom he conceives in Hollywood terms as a vague cosmic consciousness, is not mentioned until one of the last chapters of the book. Throughout, he offers moralizing reflections on rage, forgiveness ("a sacred process"), marriage, parenting, prostate cancer and the burning question of whether Sidney Poitier has a dark side. "I had come to believe a little bit in my own press clippings," he notes, reflecting on his reputation as a man of unusual integrity and virtue; for better and for worse, this book contains little to complicate that belief. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal There should be a rule that celebrities can't write memoirs until they are at least 70 to avoid the inevitable rehashing of one's life in a second or even third memoir. Poitier wrote his first autobiography (This Life) in 1980 and is following it up now with a second. However, in addition to rehashing some of the stories from the first book, he also wants to share his wisdom and ponder the meaning of life. He wistfully remembers the simplicity of growing up on Cat Island in the Bahamas and pities privileged children who have never experienced such an unspoiled life. He regrets his early divorce and the effects it had on his children. There is almost a sense of apology as Poitier examines his actions, but at the same time there is quite a bit of self-importance. By the end, he seems to have forgiven himself and figured it all out: "We're all imperfect, and life is simply a perpetual unending struggle against those imperfections." When he talks about acting technique, the book sizzles, but otherwise it is not a necessary purchase unless book promotion efforts generate requests. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 1/00.]--Rosellen Brewer, Monterey Cty. Free Libs., Salinas, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Book list By any measure, Sidney Poitier has led a remarkably successful life. One of the legendary American actors, he has starred in more than 40 films and acted in many successful Broadway plays. His career is even more remarkable considering his background. Born dirt poor in the Bahamas, Poitier came to the U.S. penniless at age 15 in 1943. After working odd jobs and scraping by in Florida and New York City, Poitier landed, by chance, a small acting role. His performance was noticed by talent scouts, and with a combination of luck, grit, and sheer willpower, he went on to become Hollywood's first leading black actor and one of its greatest stars. In Measure, Poitier attempts to unravel for himself his own remarkable life story, looking at early life experiences, his family, and various themes that he believes have contributed to his success. Measure is not a chronological autobiography; the book emphasizes themes that have shaped his life. The author examines rural poverty, racism in "Jim Crow" Florida, morality, self-esteem, and the nature of being an "outsider" . Poitier is an excellent storyteller, and the book is anecdotally rich. Calling this autobiography--the author's second--"spiritual" may be somewhat misleading. Religion is a minor part of the story. Instead, Poitier's tale is an affirmation of the value of morality and personal integrity in leading a successful, fulfilling life. --Ted Leventhal

From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Library Journal Following his autobiography (This Life); something with a spiritual dimension. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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