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Across the Universe by Beth Revis
The Adventures of Superhero Girl by Faith Erin Hicks
Afterparty by Daryl Gregory
All Clear by Connie Willis
Cherry Heaven by L.J. Adlington
The Color Master: Stories by Aimee Bender
The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes by DuBose Heyward
Curses! Foiled Again by Jane Yolen
Ghostbusters: Total Containment by Erik Burnham
The Girls from the Revolutionary Cantina by Mike Padilla
Grumpy Cat: A Grumpy Book by Grumpy Cat
The Hidden Spring by Clarence Budington Kelland
Hilda and the Bird Parade by Luke Pearson
The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa
How to Paint a Cat by Rebecca M. Hale
Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai
Journal of a UFO Investigator by David Halperin
Lords and Ladies by Terry Pratchett
Olivia and the Fairy Princesses by Ian Falconer
Operation Redwood by S. Terrell French
Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin
Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow
The Return of Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke
Simon's Cat in Kitten Chaos by Simon Tofield
The Summer Experiment by Cathie Pelletier
Summer Knight by Jim Butcher
3 Below by Patrick Carman
Touchstone by Laurie R. King
Under the Dome by Stephen King
The Vampire's Visit by David A. Poulsen
xxxHolic Volume 13 by CLAMP

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

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My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Ragtime

Ragtime: 08/19/14

cover artAs a kid growing up in the 1970s — 1980s, Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow was one of those books that all adults my parents' age seemed to have a copy of. As a teenager it was also one of the books I borrowed from my parents from the shelf of books they had pretty much forgotten about but kept just because.

Ragtime takes place in New Rochelle, New York at the turn of the last century. It involves the way the twentieth century heralded in a bunch of stuff we now take for granted (like automobiles, electricity, and other modern conveniences). But it's also a product of its era, a decade when it seems every book was trying to out do every other book for the amounts of depravity included in the name of art and literature.

So as a naive teen living in a San Diego suburb, most of the sex went over my head. The sex parts are actually so dryly written, that it's no surprise that I missed most of it except to have a gut feeling that it was there. (I didn't miss the sex in Philip José Farmer's stuff, though, but that's a different blog post.)

This time around, re-reading it as an adult, it wasn't the sex that made me put the book aside. No. It was all the white privilege, specially the rich, white, privilege. The book opens with a long and dull passage about what life was like near the house in New Rochelle. It's all idyllic because it was only rich white people. There were no poor and no immigrants and no people of color.

So it seems the message of Ragtime is that all the modern conveniences and entertainment comes with a price. That is, rich white folk have to learn to live with everyone else (while, of course, still running the show and saving everything for themselves, but hey! it's progress, right?). And all of this is presented with horrendously dull passages with labored descriptions and painful attempts at allusion.

 

 

One star

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