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Strong Female Character

Laurie Petrou’s Sibling Rivalry on Steroids

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In Laurie Petrou’s Sister of Mine (Crooked Lane Books), the lives of two orphaned sisters, Hattie and Penny, begin to fray as longstanding resentments, sibling rivalry and unpaid debts overflow and the ties of sisterhood start to snap. It’s a fast-paced thriller by Petrou, a debut novelist who also is an Associate Professor at Ryerson’s RTA School of Media and speaks on topics such as gender and rejection. See what she has to say about her first work, family relationships, and her own literary journey. BookTrib: You’ve said you never set out to write suspense. How did Sister of Mine evolve into the thriller it is? Laurie Petrou: In order for the sisters’ relationship to be put to a test, there…

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Multiple Themes for Rabbi’s Scribe In “The Weight Of Ink”

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The Weight Of Ink (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) by Rachel Kadish tells the story of Ester Velasquez, an emigrant from Amsterdam who becomes a scribe for a blind rabbi in London in the 1600s right before the plague.  At the same time we learn about Helen Watt, a close-to-retiring British historian working on translations of some 17th century documents signed by scribe “Aleph.” Even though these women lived in different centuries, both were strong and determined to pursue their interests, fought to be heard, and chose a life to satisfy their minds with sacrifice of the heart. Ester is a product of the Portuguese Inquisition, and although displaced with little family, she feels at home with her job as a scribe for…

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Socialite Wannabe in Amber Brock’s “Lady Be Good”

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In 1924, George and Ira Gershwin wrote one of their most famous songs: I am so awf’ly misunderstood So, lady be good to me. . . The heroine of Amber Brock’s Lady Be Good is indeed a misunderstood young woman, tormented by desires both frivolous and serious. Beautiful and wealthy, the only daughter of a hotelier whose money is unacceptably nouveau, Kitty Tessler devotes much of her time to figuring out how to be welcomed into New York City’s Knickerbocker crowd. Her friendship with a former schoolmate Henrietta (“Hen”) Bancroft, whose patrician family is listed in the social register, has not yielded the entrée she craves. It is 1953 and American culture and society have been upended in the postwar…

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A.J. Finn Takes the Classic Novel Noir to New Heights in His Debut, ‘The Woman in the Window’

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When you’ve been as successful in the publishing world as A.J. Finn, you know a thing or two about what makes a really good book. With his debut novel The Woman in the Window, Finn has done just that: capturing the key element that makes psychological thrillers so captivating and mixing it perfectly with the hallmarks of the noir genre, we can’t wait for you to read this complex, twisted debut. Anna Fox is a recluse unable to go outside of her New York City home. Once a child psychologist with a family, she now lives alone, separated from her husband and young daughter. She spends her days drinking a lot of wine, watching old movies, and spying out the window on the new…

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Will Marvel’s Jessica Jones be More Than Just Another Strong Female Character?

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Still waiting for Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel to anchor a major comic book movie? Tired of seeing female superheroes shunted to the sidelines? (Hey, I’m talking about you, Black Widow and Storm.) Well never fear, Jessica Jones is here. Yes, Marvel and Netflix just dropped the teaser trailer and release date (November 20) for the newest superhero series that fits in the acclaimed Marvel Daredevil universe.     Just one problem. Who the hell is Jessica Jones? I’ve been reading Marvel comics since Sue Storm was in pigtails and yet all that I know about Jessica is that she married Luke Cage, aka Power Man. And therein lies a problem. Is Jessica Jones just one more Strong Female Character…

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