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by Charlaine Harris

Publishers Weekly The events of Dead Reckoning-particularly the death of the despicable but powerful vampire Victor-have consequences for Sookie Stackhouse and her supernatural gang in Harris's intriguing 13th and penultimate series installment. When Sookie's vampire husband, Eric Northman, summons her to his Shreveport home to welcome the visiting king, Felipe de Castro, and his entourage, she's shocked to find Eric feeding on another woman while the king and his underlings ravage their own humans downstairs. The woman Eric fed from turns up dead on his front lawn and someone calls the police, putting Eric and Felipe's entourage under suspicion. With the help of ex-boyfriend Bill Compton, Sookie grudgingly sets out to clear Eric's name while trying to keep the local fae under control after her kin, Claude and Niall, return to the land of Faery. As loyalties realign and betrayals are unmasked, Harris ably sets the stage for the ensemble's last hurrah. Agent: Joshua Bilmes, JABberwocky Literary Agency. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list With her psychic bond to Eric broken (Dead Reckoning, 2011), Sookie Stackhouse is at last on her own and able to make her own decisions without the vampires knowing everything. But the lack of a bond goes both ways; Eric is being courted by a vampire queen and is keeping secrets from Sookie. Of course, things are a little different for everyone in Harris' vampire-strewn world: Area 5 is currently hosting an official representative from the Vampire King of Louisiana, who is looking into peculiar recent deaths (Dead in the Family, 2010), and Eric is being blamed for the death of a young woman whose corpse was found on his front lawn (leaving Sookie to find the real killer). The local fae are upset, too, especially after Sookie's cousin Claude is summoned by Grandfather Niall. If that wasn't enough, Sookie is sure that someone is after the cluviel dor, the powerful fairy relic. With lots of developments that move ahead the larger series plot, this is essential reading for fans but not a good place to start for new readers. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Fans of this long-running series jump from book to the TV series True Blood with reckless abandon, anything to feed their craving.--Moyer, Jessica Copyright 2010 Booklist

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

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by Joan D. Hedrick

Choice Although Uncle Tom's Cabin, the most popular novel in America during the 19th century, continues to be read, studied, and discussed, the life of its author has been neglected since Forrest Wilson's Crusader in Crinoline (1941). Hedrick's biography relies heavily on Stowe's correspondence, contains more than 70 pages of scholarly notes, and includes photographs of the Stowe family. The book is easy to read and balanced in its treatment of controversial material such as Stowe's own racial prejudices, her bungling attempts to vindicate Lady Byron by exposing Lord Byron's incestuous affair with his half-sister Augusta Leigh, and her refusal to use profits from sales of Uncle Tom's Cabin to support Frederick Douglass's project for an industrial school for black men. Stowe's mind is not the most interesting one of the period, yet she captured the popular literary imagination and cannot easily be ignored by cultural historians. Unfortunately Hedrick's reliance on feminist jargon dates the book. Nevertheless, this biography provides all students of Stowe with updated, accurate, and well-documented information. Undergraduate; graduate; general. S. M. Nuernberg; University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.

Publishers Weekly This first major biography of Stowe (1811-1896) in some 50 years offers an insightful account of the life and work of the author of Uncle Tom's Cabin . Hedrick, director of women's studies at Trinity College in Connecticut, is especially good at laying out the context of Stowe's life: the constraints and opportunities for well-born New England women in the 1800s; the influence of the Bible and of ``parlor literature and parlor music'' on her work; and how the lack of political outlets for women helped fuel her outrage against slavery. In Uncle Tom's Cabin , published in weekly installments from June 1851 to April 1852 in the magazine National Era , Stowe modeled the characters mainly on her own black domestic servants without considering that ``her position as white mistress to black servants radically compromised her perceptions.'' Nonetheless, Hedrick praises her for forcing whites to confront ``the voices of a colonized people.'' Hedrick includes much information on Stowe's family life and lengthy but checkered writing career, noting that while she contributed to a new cultural vitality by supporting the Atlantic Monthly , founded in 1857, she and other women writers were ultimately disregarded. Regrettably, the book ends with Stowe's death and doesn't track the 20th-century debates about the place of Stowe's most famous work in our cultural canon. (Jan.)

Copyright Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Book list It's been 50 years since the last biography of the once adulated, eventually maligned author of Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852), Harriet Beecher Stowe, was published, and it's high time for a new look at this hugely influential writer. Hedrick, a dynamic social and literary historian, has made great use of previously unavailable materials and written a far-reaching and brilliantly synthesized narrative that not only relates Stowe's complex personal story, but also captures the ferment and verve of America's antebellum era. Born in 1811 into the industrious evangelical Beecher family of Massachusetts, Stowe came of age in unison with the emergence of America's fledgling national consciousness. After receiving an unusually thorough education for a woman of her time, Stowe began her writing life in the thriving frontier city of Cincinnati, winning over magazine readers with her conversational tone, acute observations, pioneering use of dialect, shrewd irony, and unabashed melodrama. As Hedrick tracks Stowe's progress from a scribbler of "parlor literature" to a world-renowned novelist and abolitionist, she makes certain that we understand just how much the status of women and the lack of reliable birth control shaped Stowe's daily life and moral outlook. It was the trauma of the deaths of several of her seven children that sensitized Stowe to the horrors of slave life and inspired her most famous work. A major achievement, this respectful and empathic portrait illuminates a crucial figure in our history. ~--Donna Seaman

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

Library Journal In writing this biography of Stowe, the most substantial since Forrest Wilson's Crusader in Crinoline won a Pulitzer Prize in 1941, Hedrick (women's studies, Trinity Coll., Ct.) has created an engaging and informative book that brings to life not just the complex and fascinating woman and writer but also the 19th-century America that shaped her and was shaped by her. Hedrick manages to weave into this immensely readable biography a history teeming with the domestic detail of the famous Beecher clan, the settling of the West, and the impact of the Civil War and the abolition movement. At the same time, Hedrick constructs a fascinating portrait of women's lives in the 19th century. Stowe rarely failed to give an adoring public what it wanted, from her wildly popular serial novel Uncle Tom's Cabin (1851-52) through the long, lucrative career that filled America's nostalgic need for novels about old New England. This biography is worth adding even to collections that own Wilson's book. Highly recommended.-- Ellen Finnie Duranceau, MIT Lib.

Copyright Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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by by Matthew Quick

Publishers Weekly High school senior Finley has always hoped that his basketball skills will help him escape the dead-end streets of Bellmont, a racially divided town outside Philadelphia, where his future seems bleak. As the only white guy on his school's basketball team, Finley is acutely aware of the uneasy relationship between Bellmont's substantial Irish- and African-American populations. Then Finley's coach introduces him to Russ, a black teenager who, ever since his parents were murdered, has retreated into a strange internal world, claiming to be an extraterrestrial known as Boy21. As Finley and Boy21's friendship slowly strengthens, they help each other change and grow; both boys attempt to understand past tragedies in their lives, as well as a new one involving Finley's girlfriend, Erin, which further disrupts Finley's understanding of the world. As in Sorta Like a Rock Star, Quick comes perilously close to overstuffing his story with offbeat characters and brutal twists of fate. Yet his emotionally raw tale retains a delicate sense of hope and optimism, making it a real gut punch of a read. Ages 12-up. Agent: Douglas Stewart, Sterling Lord Literistic. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Book list Finley pretends his earliest memory is shooting hoops in the driveway, where it was easy to zone out and forget what happened to his family. Now a senior, Finley doesn't talk much. My mind is a fist and it's always clenched tight, trying to keep the words in. Keeping the silence is important in his neighborhood, where the Irish mob and black gangs clash. Snitches and their families are ruthlessly punished. He and his girlfriend, Erin, play varsity b-ball and dream of getting away. When moneyed Russ moves to the neighborhood, Finley is worried about the newcomer's basketball superskills, but Russ has problems, too. After his parents' murder, he adopted the persona Boy21, a benevolent, emotionless alien stranded on Earth. Finley's glum reluctance to help Boy21 grows into surprising grace and friendship, and when Russ begins to heal, Finley confronts his own tragic past. Finley's relationships are sweet, supportive, and authentic. The revelation of what happened in Finley's childhood is heartbreaking, but the hopeful ending pays off. An unusual and touching story.--Hutley, Krista Copyright 2010 Booklist

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

School Library Journal Gr 8 Up-High school senior Finley lives with his widowed father and disabled grandfather and dreams of escaping the violence, Irish mob, and racial conflicts of Bellmont, near Philadelphia. His passions are basketball and his girlfriend, Erin. The only white player on his team, Finley trains intensively for his final season as point guard. When Coach Wilkins tells him that Russell Allen, a sensational but troubled basketball player, is enrolling in his school, Finley is puzzled by the coach's insistence that he befriend Russ. Despite their vastly different backgrounds, the two boys gradually connect. As Russ begins to emerge from the emotional trauma of his parents' murder, Coach Wilkins is determined to have him play, costing Finley his starting position and #21 jersey. Then, Erin is the victim of a hit-and-run accident. Finley's world is upended, and this time Russ offers comfort. Mysteriously denied access to hospitalized Erin, Finley learns that she was a target of gang violence and has been safely "relocated." Throughout this page-turner, Finley's stoic, pensive, compassionate demeanor; Russ's intriguing obsession with outer space; the conflict between friends over basketball; and Erin and Finley's commitment to each other ring true. Coach Wilkins's manipulation of Finley and the team sports dilemma of merit vs. talent will spark discussion. Although Irish mob connections with Finley's family and Erin's brother are briefly mentioned, Erin's accident and the abrupt conclusion that sends her and Finley into hiding, under mob protection, are not well explained. Nonetheless, characters are memorable and well developed; dialogue is crisp and authentic; and issues of responsibility, fairness, and loyalty will engage readers.-Gerry Larson, formerly at Durham School of the Arts, (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.