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About the blogger:
Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



Book Notices | A Noise Downstairs by Linwood Barclay / Dark Matter by Blake Crouch / Out of the Dark by Gregg Hurwitz / The Man from Primrose Lane by James Renner

Linwood Barclay, A Noise Downstairs

  Amazon  

Linwood Barclay can write quite the page-turner, and although he's Canadian, he tends to set his books in nearby (to me) Milford, Connecticut, which is cool. A Noise Downstairs is about Paul Davis, a nice-guy professor at "West Haven College" (a made-up place), whose life gets upended after he tries to help a colleague he sees driving erratically one night. Turns out the colleague was up to no good. For most of the book we watch Paul dealing with the consequences of what happened at the side of the road that night, his mental and physical recovery. He's in a fragile state to begin with, then, when he starts hearing strange noises coming from downstairs when he's in bed for the night.... So, this book was definitely an exciting read, but it was also rather strange--structurally, I guess. I can't be more specific without giving away a very big twist. There were actually a couple big twists, the first of which really surprised me, about 70% of the way into the book. I'm not even sure that it's right to call it a twist, but it was a surprising plot development. Maybe if the book were divided into several parts, with the big breaks in the story's direction thus flagged, I would have found that first revelation more acceptable. At any rate, the book is worth the read. It's just kind of odd.

Blake Crouch, Dark Matter

  Amazon  

Jason Dessen teaches intro physics at a small-time college in Chicago. He's happily married, with a son and a generally comfortable life, but he sometimes wonders about the path not taken. Specifically, had he not abandoned his cutting-edge work in theoretical physics to raise a family, would he be publishing seminal papers and winning august prizes? Would his wife, who made similar sacrifices, be a celebrated artist instead of an art teacher? But Jason comes to realize how good he had it after he's kidnapped at gunpoint one night and drugged. From there, things get really crazy. I hesitate to say more, although a look at the book's description on Amazon may suggest what sort of sci fi ride you're in for. But boy was this fun. And thought-provoking. And thrilling. I really didn't want it to end, and I don't think I say that often. 

Gregg Hurwitz, Out of the Dark

  Amazon  

Orphan X is back for his biggest mission yet, getting the guy who killed his mentor and who's been trying to eliminate Evan and the rest of the Orphans. He's got his work cut out for him, though, because his nemesis is the President of the United States. It's a big job, but Evan gets help from some unexpected quarters: He's slowly building an army of allies as the series progresses. At the same time, Evan has another task on his plate. Someone's contacted him through his Nowhere Man number, and he's obliged to help the helpless. This is another good read from Hurwitz, with the expected fun action scenes and some development in Evan's personal life as well. 

James Renner, The Man from Primrose Lane

  Amazon  

Well, this book is a wild ride. It was touted as mind-bending and genre-bending and it's certainly both--mind-bending enough, in fact, that somewhere toward the end my brain had had enough. I think it would take a series of late-night conversations with other people who've read the book for me to be confident I know exactly what happened. It starts off as an interesting true-crime-y novel. Who killed the man from Primrose Lane, the guy who walked around all the time with mittens on, even in the summer? That would have been enough for the book, truly, but there's a lot more going on than that, and there's a lot of jumping around in the timeline, and the story moves between different characters' perspectives. It's kind of awesome and kind of confusing. Definitely worth reading, though.

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