Stevens County Library Blog
DVD CARE For optimal viewing pleasure, our DVDs are checked for condition following their return, and again before the next checkout. There is a service charge of $1.00 per disk […]
Festival of Trees
The Festival of Trees is sponsored each year by the SCL as a community and civic event. Canned goods are collected as “votes” for a particular tree during the festival. […]
Sunflower Showcase Photography Fest
You’re invited to enter the 8th Annual Sunflower Showcase Photography Fest. The entry deadline is December 1, 2014. Download rules and information, class lists and descriptions, and an entry form athttp://www.sunflowershowcaseonline.com. […]
Booklist Review of the Day
The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher.
Mantel, Hilary (author).
Nov. 2014. 242p. Holt, hardcover, $27 (9781627792103).
First published November 15, 2014 (Booklist).
In the U.S., we have come to accept—no, love—Mantel as a historical novelist, the author of such high points in the genre as her pair of Booker Prize winners, Wolf Hall (2009) and Bring Up the Bodies (2012), the first two installments of what is to be a trilogy about Henry VIII’s chief secretary, Thomas Cromwell. Americans will now be aware of Mantel’s sterling ability in the short story form, and nary a Tudor courtier is to be found in any of the stories in this brilliant collection. And that proves to be just fine, because her edgy stories, airing contemporary social and family issues, bring her extreme eloquence to a finer point as she carries over from her novels the language—full of bravura and style yet subtly crafted—that enthralled so many readers of the two Tudor novels. And as it will be remembered, too, half the allure of those two novels was the atmosphere the author so carefully and accurately created, such that even the reader, along with the characters, came to fear King Henry’s wrath. The same condition holds true in her short stories; the atmosphere throughout is creepy, alarming, and unsettling. In other words, just wonderful! Mood and plot merge into incredible scenarios that ultimately and disturbingly end up seeming to be perfectly natural. In the title story, set in Windsor, England, in 1983, an IRA rifleman insinuates himself with amazing ease into the apartment of a woman who is expecting a plumber, and he sets up his equipment to carry out the assassination of then prime minister Margaret Thatcher, who is having eye surgery across the street. As it turns out, this story is not the political thriller one would imagine; instead, it is a psychological contest of wills. Now go on and read the other stories; unforgettable surprises and pleasures await. Brad Hooper