Thursday, August 11, 2022

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Book Review

Book Reviews


By Naomi Novik
320 pages
Del Ray
Sept. 29, 2020

‘A Deadly Education’

Is anyone sick of reading about schools of magic? No? Excellent, because this is the best one yet. Naomi Novik already has a well-deserved reputation for compelling characters and fascinating settings, but she’s out done herself this time. “A Deadly Education” is a stunner of a story complete with one of my favorite heroines of all time.

Galadriel may seem like the classic misfit turned fated hero, but her prophesied future is very unheroic, as she is destined to become a powerful, dark magic villain. Trying to avoid her homicidal fate, she attempts to survive in a wild and weird school for magic users. Filled with deadly monsters and even more terrifying teenage turmoil, Galadriel’s sharp wit and the excellent world-building make for a deeply entertaining and surprisingly complex story that I can’t stop recommending.

Hilarious, dark and richly rewarding, “A Deadly Education” is Novik’s best yet. Hopefully the first in a series, you won’t want to be left behind for this one. Don’t miss it. ♦

— Reviewed by Julie Goodrich

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By Yuval Noah Harari
248 pages
Harper Perennial
Oct. 27, 2020

‘Sapiens: A Graphic History Volume One’

An emerging powerhouse in nonfiction books, Yuval Noah Harari writes about humanity in a beautifully rich and readable way. However, not everyone has the time or inclination to plow through several hundred pages of text. Which is why I’m so excited to see Harari’s extraordinary book, “Sapiens,” get a graphic edition.

In this first volume, there are more than 200 pages of gorgeous illustrations to match Harari’s beautifully told story of human evolution. It is a fascinating and incredible journey, now rewritten and illustrated into a form accessible for any age or reading level.

For fans of the original book (a bestseller in its own right), or for those who missed it the first time around, this is a must-have for anyone fascinated by where we’ve come from and where we may be going. Harari is a master of shaping difficult concepts into readable prose, and the addition of art just makes it even more so. This would make an excellent gift for a curious child, an art-loving teen or anyone with a passion for science or history. ♦

— Reviewed by Julie Goodrich

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