Braille Book Review

July-August 2001
Books for Adults--Fiction

Books listed in this issue of Braille Book Review were recently sent to cooperating libraries. The complete collection contains books by many authors on fiction and nonfiction subjects, including biographies, classics, gothics, mysteries, romances, and others. Contact your cooperating library to learn more about the wide range of books available in the collection.

To order books, contact your cooperating library.

This page includes Web-Braille links to full-text braille versions of books. Eligible patrons may sign up for Web-Braille through the library that handles their braille magazine subscriptions.

Note: For the information of the reader, a notice may appear immediately following the book description to indicate occurrences of strong language, explicit descriptions of sex, or violence. The word "some" before any of these terms indicates an occasional or infrequent occurrence, as in "some strong language."


Ka BR 12627
by Roberto Calasso
4 volumes
Retells ancient stories that are a part of India's spiritual tradition. In this translation by Tim Parks, Calasso looks at Indian mythology through descriptions that build image upon image, beginning with the creation of the universe and continuing to the spiritual awakening of the Buddha. 1998.

Nothing but the Night BR 12669
by Bill Pronzini
2 volumes
Ever since an accident put his beloved wife in a coma, Nick Hendryx has been searching for the other driver, using a police sketch. Now he's found his man, wealthy Cam Gallagher. And Gallagher is indeed consumed by guilt, but over something else. Explicit descriptions of sex, strong language, and some violence. 1999.

Anna Karenina BR 12695
by Leo Tolstoy
8 volumes
In the 1870s in Russia, Anna flaunts convention by having an adulterous affair with Count Vronsky. Preferring the allure of romance to her stifling marriage with Alexis Karenin, Anna's happiness disintegrates as she loses her peace of mind. Originally published in 1877. Translated by Louise and Aylmer Maude. 1999.

The House of the Seven Gables BR 12720
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
3 volumes (Reissue)
The fortunes of the Pyncheon family of New England have declined through the generations, leaving them in a decaying house with little money. Interactions among family members are based on past mistakes and misdeeds that now dictate their lives. But love can change everything. 1851. 1851.

The Gentleman from San Francisco and Other Stories BR 12728
by Ivan Bunin
2 volumes
A selection of seventeen short stories spanning this Russian Nobel laureate's writing career from 1915 to 1944. In "The Primer of Love," Ivlev interrupts his carriage ride in the country to acquire a memento of a man unhinged by love for his maidservant, Lushka. 1984.

Reprisal BR 12743
by Mitchell Smith
3 volumes
Poet Joanna Reed is stunned when her husband of twenty years dies falling off his boat. When this tragedy is immediately compounded by the burning death of her father, Joanna is sure they were murdered. But she doesn't know her daughter's roommate is the killer. Violence and strong language. 1999.

Big City Eyes BR 12778
by Delia Ephron
2 volumes
Journalist Lily Davis moves her teenage son, Sam, away from Manhattan to keep him out of trouble. In their new home--a small gossipy Long Island town--Sam acquires a weird haircut and an odd girlfriend; Lily becomes infatuated with a married cop and tries to solve a murder. 2000.

The Fly-Truffler BR 12779
by Gustaf Sobin
1 volume
Philippe Cabassac discovers that consuming pungent truffles disposes him to vivid dreams of Julieta, his beloved wife now two years dead. As he pursues the ultimate truffle, his nocturnal communion with her gradually becomes more important to him than the importunities of daily existence. 1999.

Somewhere in a Desert BR 12782
by Dominique Sigaud
1 volume
A soldier's inert body resting peacefully on the desert sand at the end of the Gulf War evokes profound feelings and speaks to those who encounter it. His wife travels from America only to learn about his senseless death from the Saudi villagers who buried him. Some descriptions of sex. 1998.

Deck the Halls BR 12821
by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark
2 volumes
Amateur sleuth Alvirah Meehan assists Los Angeles private investigator Regan Reilly, who is in New York visiting her parents for Christmas when her father is kidnapped. This joint effort by mother and daughter authors brings together characters from earlier works by each writer. Bestseller 2000.

Shattered BR 12824
by Dick Francis
2 volumes
After glassblower Gerard Logan watches his friend, jockey Martin Stukely, die in a race, he is handed a mysterious videotape. Soon afterwards the tape is stolen, leaving Logan, Detective Constable Catherine Dodd, and a gang of thugs searching for the crucial clue. Bestseller 2000.

Complete Novels: Red Harvest, The Dain Curse, The Maltese Falcon, The Glass Key, The Thin Man BR 13021
by Dashiell Hammett
8 volumes
Five classic mysteries originally published between 1929 and 1934, featuring hard-boiled detectives. Stories include The Thin Man, which introduces the husband-and-wife team of Nick and Nora Charles, and The Maltese Falcon with Sam Spade. Some violence and some strong language. 1934.

Your Blue-Eyed Boy BR 13058
by Helen Dunmore
2 volumes
Now a thirty-eight-year-old judge in England, Simone is shocked to receive letters from an American with whom she had an affair twenty years earlier. By the time he arrives in person, she's convinced he plans to blackmail her with photos from her past. Explicit descriptions of sex and strong language. 1998.

The Pearl of Ruby City BR 13107
by Jana Harris
3 volumes
Ruby City, Washington; 1893. Twenty-one-year-old Pearl Ryan hides out in a mining town to escape her shady past. While working in the laundry with Mary Reddawn and Chin Lu, she studies medicine under the local doc. When patients begin dying, Pearl quietly investigates before the law is called in. Some violence. 1998.

A Confederacy of Dunces BR 13109
by John Kennedy Toole
4 volumes
Pulitzer Prize-winning novel about slovenly, obese Ignatius Reilly, who is forced to seek employment in New Orleans after his tipsy mother has a car accident. Reilly, a medievalist who hates everything modern, runs through a succession of jobs in which he wreaks havoc. Some strong language. 1980.

To JayKae: Life Stinx BR 13111
by Jean Davies Okimoto
2 volumes
Sixteen-year-old Jason misses Thao, the girl he wishes he were more than friends with (and who recently moved to California). Now his father says he's remarrying, and Jason soon has a new stepbrother--a good-looking athlete. Jason takes refuge in an online romance. For junior and senior high readers. 1999.

The Palace BR 13114
by Lisa St Aubin de Terán
2 volumes
Italy, 1860. Imprisoned for supporting Garibaldi's insurrection, young stonemason Gabriele del Campo dreams of the once-glimpsed Donna Donatella, for whom he fashions a marble palace in his mind. Leaving prison, Gabriele wins a fortune at a gambling house and begins construction of his imagined mansion. 1997.

A Whisper and a Wish BR 13118
by Robin Jones Gunn
1 volume
When her family relocates to California, fifteen-year-old Christy Miller faces new dreams and disappointments as she decides what price she's willing to pay for making new friends. Her newfound religious faith sustains her in tough times. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

The Anniversary and Other Stories BR 13121
by Louis Auchincloss
2 volumes
Nine short stories of a bygone era when class and tradition were sometimes overwhelming. In "The Interlude," a female lawyer in the 1950s feels marginalized after she loses her job upon marriage and motherhood. In "The Last of the Great Courtesans," a mistress eventually marries for power. 1999.

Head above Water BR 13124
by S.L. Rottman
2 volumes
High school junior Skye is on the swim team and looks after her older brother, Sunny, who has Down syndrome, while their single mother works two jobs. When popular Mike begins dating Skye, she has to be devious to find the time. For junior and senior high readers. 1999.

Surprise Endings BR 13126
by Robin Jones Gunn
1 volume
Sophomore Christy Miller hopes to make the cheerleading squad at her new school, but she faces a jealous classmate, financial problems, and complications between the two guys she's interested in. Based on her faith in God, she makes a surprising decision. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

Summer Promise BR 13127
by Robin Jones Gunn
2 volumes
Fourteen-year-old Christy Miller, a farm girl from Wisconsin, is spending the summer in California with her wealthy aunt and uncle. But dealing with the fast beach crowd leads to moral dilemmas that are only resolved when she meets a group of Christian teens. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

Yours Forever BR 13132
by Robin Jones Gunn
1 volume
Fifteen-year-old Christy Miller expects her friend Todd to reciprocate her romantic feelings when she sees him during Christmas vacation. But after many misunderstandings with friends and family, she begins to grasp the implications of "forever" in the context of her faith. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

145th Street: Short Stories BR 13133
by Walter Dean Myers
1 volume
Ten short stories depicting life on a block in Harlem. In "Big Joe's Funeral," Joe cashes in his life insurance to have a fine funeral while he's still alive to enjoy the party. In "The Streak," a basketball player agonizes over missing the final shot of the game. For senior high readers. 2000.

Death in Summer BR 13135
by William Trevor
2 volumes
Thaddeus's wealthy wife is killed in a bicycle accident, leaving him with their infant daughter. After helping him interview nannies, his mother-in-law suggests that she care for the baby herself. One of the spurned applicants begins plotting revenge, and before summer's end two more deaths occur. 1998.

The Singing Mountain BR 13137
by Sonia Levitin
2 volumes
While traveling in Israel, eighteen-year-old Mitch Green discovers a sense of fulfillment that his family fails to appreciate. When his mother and orphaned cousin, Carlie, come from California to visit Mitch, a tragic event occurs that bonds the two cousins. For junior and senior high readers. 1998.

Shadow Baby BR 13139
by Alison McGhee
2 volumes
Lover of books and words, eleven-year-old Clara from a small Adirondack town befriends elderly immigrant Georg to learn his life story. Meanwhile, Clara continues to create tales to flesh out her own largely unknown family history, focusing on her stillborn twin and the grandfather and father she never knew. 2000.

Siam; or, The Woman Who Shot a Man BR 13140
by Lily Tuck
2 volumes
Thailand, 1967. Newly wed Claire meets silk entrepreneur Jim Thompson at a party shortly before he mysteriously disappears. Her obsession with Thompson's fate, mixed with culture shock and anxiety over her husband's war-related work, lead her to commit an irrevocable act. Some descriptions of sex and some strong language. 1999.

The Sun King BR 13145
by David Ignatius
2 volumes
Charming, shadowy billionaire Sandy Galvin takes over the preeminent newspaper in Washington, D.C., and appoints his old Harvard flame, Candace Ridgway, editor. As Galvin shifts the paper's traditional focus and aligns himself with the city's power brokers, he realizes that Washington is an alien culture. Some explicit descriptions of sex and some strong language. 1999.

One Girl: A Novel in Stories BR 13148
by Sheila Kohler
1 volume
A collection of stories about women covering childhood, adolescence, courtship, marriage, and death. In "The Bride's Secret," a wealthy young bride and her older, more worldly groom honeymooning in Paris discover the real reasons their mothers arranged the match. Some descriptions of sex and some violence. Willa Cather Fiction Prize. 1999.

Darby O'Gill and the Good People BR 13158
by Herminie Templeton Kavanagh
2 volumes
A tale of Irishman Darby O'Gill's adventures after being captured by the leprechauns. But even when he eventually escapes, Darby remains friends with their leader, King Brian Connors of the Good People. Made into the 1959 Walt Disney movie. 1903.

Don't Forget to Die BR 13160
by Margaret Chittenden
2 volumes
Charlie Plato, part owner of a California country western saloon, investigates the murder of her partner Angel's long-lost father. Assisting Charlie is her business associate, television hunk Zack Hunter. As they work together, she tries to resist her attraction to Zack. Some violence. 1999.

Some Things That Stay BR 13174
by Sarah Willis
2 volumes
Tamara's family moves constantly to give her artist father new landscapes to paint. In 1954 fifteen-year-old Tamara is content living in their rental farmhouse and learning about religion and sex from her new neighbors. Then her mother is diagnosed with tuberculosis. Some explicit descriptions of sex and some strong language. 2000.

At Freddie's BR 13180
by Penelope Fitzgerald
2 volumes
London, 1963. Two new Irish teachers, Hannah Graves and Pierce Carroll, arrive to tutor the child actors at the Temple Stage School. Freddie Wentworth has been running the school for decades--always on the verge of bankruptcy. Pierce becomes smitten with Hannah, but there is romantic competition. 1982.

Big Fish: A Novel of Mythic Proportions BR 13183
by Daniel Wallace
1 volume
William Bloom's father is dying, and William has a great need to understand this man who was never at home. As they spend time together, the old man continues his habit of telling jokes, leaving William with little knowledge and images of a "weird creature, wild, concurrently young and old, dying and newborn"--a myth. 1998.

Enchanted Night BR 13198
by Steven Millhauser
1 volume
At the magic hour of midnight on a hot summer night in Connecticut, the moonlight beckons. While dreams and reality mingle, a series of tableaux unfolds: teenagers roam, a store window mannequin comes to life, and a thirty-nine year old bachelor defends a vulnerable young woman. Some descriptions of sex and some strong language. 1999.

Female Intelligence BR 13210
by Jane Heller
3 volumes
Linguist Dr. Lynn Wyman teaches men how to communicate with women. But when her husband cheats on her, it adversely affects her career. Lynn's comeback is to show "America's toughest boss," Brandon Brock, how to be compassionate--but then she falls in love with him. Some descriptions of sex and some strong language. 2001.

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