Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Nevermore: Goats, Dragons, Across Open Ground, Ike's Bluff, and Now That It's You

Reported by Ambrea

One of our Nevermore readers decided to pick up something different to share this week by selecting The Dairy Goat Handbook:  For Backyard, Homestead, and Small Farm by Ann Starbard.  It's a comprehensive guidebook about selecting and raising goat breeds, maintaining a healthy herd, and using dairy goat products, like milk and cheese.  Our reader picked Starbard’s book up on a whim, spying it on a display shelf, and she said she just couldn’t resist.  She enjoyed reading The Dairy Goat Handbook and, more importantly, she liked learning something new.  “If you’re into vicarious farming, as I am, this is a very good book,” she told her fellow Nevermore members, and she highly recommended it to others with an interest in homesteading or simply like goats.

Nevermore also looked at The Kingdom of the Golden Dragon by Isabel Allende.  Although Allende has appeared a number of times, it was the first time her young readers’ series was introduced to Nevermore.  In The Kingdom of the Golden Dragon, Alexander Cold and his best friend, Nadia, are reunited in a new adventure that takes them to the highest reaches of the Himalayas and a forbidden kingdom protected by the fabled Golden Dragon.  Our reader enjoyed reading Allende’s novel.  While it reflects the younger age of its audience, she said it has a very good story and she thought the author did a wonderful job of making the setting come to life.  It was even better than the first book, City of the Beasts, she enthused.

Next, Nevermore looked at Across Open Ground by Heather Parkinson, a fascinating epic about Walter Pascoe, a sheep herder in Idaho, and Trina Ivy, a beautiful young trapper, as they struggle to give root to their growing affection—and survive the First World War.  Our reader said she was “so glad I go to read this book.”  Beautifully written and breathtakingly eloquent, Across Open Ground was immediately labeled as a fantastic book.  She said it reminded her of the Red Badge of Courage, threaded with moments of beauty and tragedy that gave the story impact and presence.  A magnificent and searing story about war and love and, ultimately, the fragility of human life, Across Open Ground received some very high marks and a great recommendation from our reader.

Skipping to the tail end of the Second World War and veering right into the 1950s, Nevermore took a look at Ike’s Bluff:  President Eisenhower’s Secret Battle to Save the World by Evan Thomas.  After assuming the presidency in 1953, Dwight Eisenhower set about ending the Korean War by whatever means necessary—or so he lead the American public to believe.  A detailed and in-depth biography portraying foreign relations of the United States during the presidency of Eisenhower, Ike’s Bluff proved to be an intriguing book for our reader.  He said the writing was excellent, and he added that the author did a wonderful job of shedding new light on his subject.   Overall, he rated it highly, saying it was a “very good book.”

Last, Nevermore looked at a lovely comedic romance by Tawna Fenske.  In Now That It’s You, Meg Delaney decides that, after two years of radio silence, it’s time to let bygones be bygones with her cheating ex-fiancĂ©, Matt Midland, and she hopes to make amends for leaving him at the altar.  But when Matt unexpectedly passes away, Meg is left with the lingering debt of their still-broken engagement sans closure—and suddenly Kyle, Matt’s younger brother, is back in her life, leaving her wondering about what could have been.  Our reader really enjoyed reading Fenske’s latest novel, calling it a wonderfully hilarious depiction of both romantic and familial relationships.  She said she enjoyed the humor, the sweetness, and even the awkward moments; however, she noted she was hooked after discovering the group of LARPers (Live Action Role-Players) dressed in fantasy gear in the second chapter.

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