Monday, June 22, 2009
Well in the past week I've read Pearl by Mary Gordon, Harvest and The Surgeon by Tess Gerritsen (internist turned mystery writer) and The Tempest Tales by Walter Mosely.
The Tempest Tales wasn't the best but the premise of the story was interesting. A black man is killed by the police in a case of mistaken identity. When he gets to St. Peter he is told he has to go to hell because of some of the things he's done. He refuses which upsets everyone because up until now no-one has questioned a sentence. As a result an accounting Angel is sent down to earth to live as a mortal and Tempest is returned to earth in another body to convince the Angel that he should not go to hell. Everything is progressing in an interesting manner until Basel Bob shows up to add another threat to Tempest and the Angel named Joshua.
Tess Gerritsen is a former MD who writes mystery novels set in the medical community. I found her by wandering around in the fiction section looking for a mystery writer with a long line of books.(I've read all of Sara Paretsky's books including the essays and Bloody Kansas; all the Sherri S. Tepper's and Lia Matera's Roger L. Simon's and almost all the Walter Mosely's so I am desperate.) I read Harvest first because it was her first book and planned to continue in chronological order but at a Flea Market over the weekend I found The Surgeon. This is her sixth book and moved a lot faster than the first one. I am going back to the library for more today. I don't even want to tell you the plots because even a few sentences could spoil them for you.
Pearl is the story of a young woman who goes on a hunger strike and chains herself to the American Embassy in Ireland after a friend dies. The other main characters are Pearls single forceful mother and the son of Pearl's father's former housekeeper who is also the executor of his will since Maria (Pearl's mother) and her father were not speaking at the time of his death. I thought Maria was going to get the short end of the stick since she comes across as a force of nature and people are normally put off by that but I was happy with the ending. It really made me cry though. I hope I never have to see my kids in the hospital with tubes all over them near death. I'm not all that familiar with the problems in Northern Ireland but the ethnic, political and religious backgrounds of the main characters meshing in that setting make an interesting story.
Posted by Diana Balot Frank at 10:09 AM