Nov 16 2004

Blue Dahlia, by Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts’s Blue Dahlia reads like a mix’n’match of about fifty of her previous books. As such, it’s a perfect introduction to her work--like most of Roberts’s books, Blue Dahlia is an enterta...

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Nov 14 2004

Kelley Armstrong

The lust, angst, and violence quotient in Kelley Armstrong's stories of werewolves and witches is perfectly balanced between Annette Curtis Klause's Blood and Chocolate and Laurell K. Hamilton's A...

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Nov 14 2004

Susan Juby

Susan Juby is the author of Alice, I Think and its sequel, Miss Smithers, a hilarious and deeply bizarre series of teen books about a young Canadian misanthrope with ten less-than-successful years...

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Nov 14 2004

Berkeley Breathed

With cartoonist Berkeley Breathed, all roads seem to lead back to Bloom County. As the writer and illustrator of Bloom County, Outland, and now Opus, as well as a handful of children's books, alm...

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Nov 13 2004

Raymond Chandler

Compared with fellow Black Mask writers Cornell Woolrich and Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler was a man with a successful career, a working set of social skills, and a downright chatty (one migh...

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Nov 13 2004

Cornell Woolrich

Alfred Hitchcock must have taken one look at the Cornell Woolrich's stories and gotten those little cartoon dollar signs in his eyes. Between 1954 and 1958 he turned Woolrich's nail-biting short ...

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Nov 4 2004

The Mouse That Roared, by Leonard Wibberley

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When Leonard Wibberley's The Mouse That Roared first appeared as a serialized story in the 1950s, I'm sure the idea of the United States being invaded by a tiny nation armed with ridiculously inadequate weapons was just too precious. Unfortunately, in a post-9/11, box-cutter-filled world, some of the central jokes in this story hit pretty close to home...

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Nov 3 2004

Mary Kay Andrews

As you could probably guess from the titles of her stories (Savannah Blues, Little Bitty Lies, and Hissy Fit), Mary Kay Andrews is a very Southern writer. Her intelligent, entertaining books are ...

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Nov 3 2004

Dorothy Gilman

According to the Internet, novelist Dorothy Gilman's real last name is "Butters". Now, while I can see that "Dorothy Butters" may not scream "hardboiled suspense writer", I think that it is the p...

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Nov 3 2004

Terry Pratchett

Terry Pratchett is like God's gift to fantasy fans. Some of his books might blend a bit together, but Pratchett is witty (capable of making puns funny--it's true! Yes, it can be done!) and he ca...

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Nov 3 2004

Frances Hodgson Burnett

The English-American writer Frances Hodgson Burnett actually has two claims to Wordcandy fame. Not only did she write two classic YA novels, but one of the aforementioned classic novels (1909's A...

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Oct 17 2004

Jasper Fforde

Jasper Fforde is the author of a series of dazzlingly silly and imaginative alternate universe/adventure/detective stories, including The Eyre Affair, Lost in a Good Book, The Well of Lost Plots, ...

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Oct 17 2004

The Scarlet Pimpernel, by the Baroness Orczy

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The Baroness Orczy's 1905 novel The Scarlet Pimpernel is pure, unadulterated wordcandy. It's like the literary equivalent of Scharffen Berger chocolate. This book is gorgeously written, perfectly...

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Oct 17 2004

Monica Hughes

Monica Hughes, arguably the first Canadian writer of YA science fiction, published close to 35 books, many of which focus on the delicate balance between humans, scientific progress, and nature. ...

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Oct 17 2004

C. S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia are Wordcandy classics, and I am afraid that yes, you do have to read them. If you read them as a kid, it was probably pretty easy to just ignore all the anvil-s...

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Oct 16 2004

John Ney Reiber

The character of Timothy Hunter--the original black-haired, bespectacled British boy wizard--was introduced in a Neil Gaiman-penned miniseries in 1990, and DC's Vertigo Comics has trotted him out ...

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Oct 7 2004

Baroness Orczy

The Hungarian-born novelist Emma Magdalena Rosalia Maria Josefa Orczy is best known as the Baroness Orczy, the author of the Wordcandy classic The Scarlet Pimpernel. Orczy began her career as an ...

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Oct 7 2004

T. H. White

T. H. White is the author of 1958's The Once and Future King, a "novel" (actually a collection of four of his earlier books) that begins with the education of the young King Arthur and ends with h...

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Sep 25 2004

My Uncle Oswald, by Roald Dahl

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If you took any good caper movie, turned it into a book, added a boatload of tongue-in-cheek licentiousness, and stuck the whole thing in a plummy P.G. Wodehouse-style setting, you’d still en...

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Sep 23 2004

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke

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Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell is an extraordinary book, but Bloomsbury’s attempt to market it as “Harry Potter for grown-ups” is misleading. Clarke’s ten-years-in-the-making debut novel is a witty, wildly imaginative book that’s certain to knock the socks off any English Lit major...

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Sep 16 2004

Charles Dickens

If your only experience with Charles Dickens's books is reading A Tale of Two Cities for your high school literature class, you aren't doing him justice. I am sorry to say that after that truly e...

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Aug 19 2004

Madeleine E. Robins

Madeleine E. Robins tried writing several different types of genre fiction--romances, sci-fi stories, comic books--before hitting literary paydirt with 2003's Point of Honour. This mystery series...

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Aug 19 2004

Jean Webster

Short, sweet, and witty, Jean Webster's Daddy-Long-Legs was the 1912 equivalent of Meg Cabot's Princess Diaries books. Webster's heroine, 18-year-old orphan Judy Abbott, is stunned to discover t...

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Aug 19 2004

Susanna Clarke

Englishwoman Susanna Clarke is the author of the almost universally praised novel Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell (the subject of one of our Book of the Week reviews) as well as a handful of shor...

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Aug 19 2004

Anne Bronte

Anne Bronte's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall is my favorite of the Bronte sisters' books. Unlike Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights, it focuses on the consequences of Byronic behavior, rather than wadin...

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Aug 19 2004

Norton Juster

Despite being the author of the totally awesome The Phantom Tollbooth, the geek classic The Dot and the Line, and a handful of other bizarre-but-amazing kids' books, Norton Juster's focus has rema...

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Aug 19 2004

J.D. Robb

See Nora Roberts. Same person, different name. Note: The J and D in this pen name are the initials of Ms. Roberts’s sons.

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Aug 19 2004

Lisa Kleypas

We here at Wordcandy firmly believe that Lisa Kleypas is the Western World's finest living historical romance novelist. Her books are thoroughly researched without being obnoxious about it, her c...

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Aug 19 2004

Jayne Ann Krentz

Ms. Krentz has the distinction of having seven different pen names. Some of them write better than others. Note: Most of her books under the Krentz name are reasonably entertaining contemporary ...

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Aug 19 2004

Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts doesn't always live up to her full potential, but she is one of contemporary fiction's most consistently intelligent and entertaining writers. While it seems like she puts out a doze...

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