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In the Shadow of Man
Jane Goodall, Richard W. Wrangham
The Child Catchers: Rescue, Trafficking, and the New Gospel of Adoption
Kathryn Joyce
The Cuckoo's Calling
Robert Galbraith
Why We Broke Up - Daniel Handler, Maira Kalman I'm guessing they broke up because they're both insufferable, but I'm not finishing the book to confirm.

Betty Smith: A Life of the Author of a Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Betty Smith: A Life of the Author of a Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Valerie Raleigh Yow Many of the reviews on this page are for the novel A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. This book is actually the biography of the author, Betty Smith. This is a dense, well-researched biography; now I really want to go the University of North Carolina and dig around in the Betty Smith collection at the archives. I do wish the biographer wasn't so present in this book - I could have done without a lot of the speculation, which really didn't seem necessary given the amount of personal letters and writings Smith left behind. But it's still an enjoyable read for anyone who grew up with A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Joy in the Morning.
The Boxcar Children, A Graphic Novel #1 (Boxcar Children Graphic Novels) - This book suffers from not knowing who the intended audience should be. The Boxcar Children was originally a chapter book, but this version is condensed into only 32 pages and is apparently meant for a younger audience. None of the events from the original book are left out, so the pace is very rushed, and I think that kids will have a hard time following the plot because of the quick changes and lack of explanation. The dialog is incredibly stilted - this reads like a bad early reader or book report. Plus, the illustrations are fairly awful.
The Butterfly Tattoo - Philip Pullman I'm pretty sure this was supposed to be two books, but for some reason Pullman decided to throw the love story and the crime thriller together into one book. The love story was moderately entertaining, but the crime drama consisted of LONG passages of the criminal telling various versions of his story - by the third time he started talking, I started skimming, because none of the stories was particularly interesting. Also, my copy of the book had a blurb on the back that gave away the ending, so I spent the whole book anticipating what should have been an unexpected ending. Boo all around.

Types of Drama: Plays and Contexts (8th Edition)

Types of Drama: Plays and Contexts (8th Edition) - Sylvan Barnet, William Burto Full of typos.
Dreams of Gold - Maynard F. Thomson Surprisingly good. The skating sections are obviously well-researched. The subplot about the Japanese businessman is less interesting, but overall a satisfying read.
The Art Thief: A Novel - Noah Charney Clunky dialogue, horrible exposition (if the only way to you can think of to give the reader the information they need is to have them "sit in" on an art history lecture, you should really rethink being a writer), confusing plot. Trying to cash in on the Dan Brown craze, but without any of Brown's compulsive page-turning.

The Encyclopedia of Figure Skating

The Encyclopedia of Figure Skating - John Williams Malone, John Malone Contains many, many factual errors, so it's not very useful as a reference work.
My Sister's Keeper - Jodi Picoult Jodi Picoult has made a name for herself as the author who takes on tough issues. I would be a lot more amenable to her fiction if she actually took a stance on those tough issues instead of writing an entire book, coming to the end, and then throwing her hands in the air and saying "it's just too hard to decide!" and writing a deus ex machina ending in which no one has to live with any tough decisions that they've made. This book is a complete cop-out, and her editor should be ashamed to have let it go to press with such an ending. I'm frustrated because the book had such potential and ended up being such tripe.
Almost Alice (Alice Books) - Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

I was very disappointed in the resolution of Pamela's unexpected pregnancy. Taking the decision out of Pamela's hands by having her suffer a miscarriage was a complete cop-out and a missed opportunity to have a serious discussion about her options. I'm surprised because this series hasn't hesitated to deal with controversial issues before; why the backpedaling now?