Sunday, July 26, 2009

The real history behind Foyle's War

This book provides information about the true stories on which each episode of the television series, Foyle's War, was based. Set in Hastings during the early 1940s the police series follows the experiences of DCS Christopher Foyle and his team as they attempt to maintain law and order during a war. The television series was written by author, Anthony Horowitz, who contributed the forward to this publication written by Rod Green. Liberally illustrated with photographs taken during the period as well as images from the television series the book contains chapters on policing in Britain during World War II, crime and punishment at the time as well as information about the major characters in the television series before discussing the original events that prompted development of the story for each episode.

Finger Lickin' Fifteen

Another Stephanie Plum novel, this time evolving around the decapitation of celebrity chef, Stanley Chipotle, witnessed by Lula. Much of the story involves Lula trying to keep out of the path of the decapitators as she devises a plan to lead to their capture, in order to collect the reward, by entering a barbecue sauce making competition. With Grandma Mazur as an accomplice chaos ensues as they experiment with recipes. Meanwhile Stephanie agrees to work part-time for Ranger to help find out who has been trying to sabotage Ranger's security service while Ranger agrees to help Stephanie bring in some of the more difficult bail absconders on her list. As well as the usual destruction of vehicles Stephanie manages to become, at various times, covered with flour, sauce and other foodstuffs, much to the amusement of Ranger and Joe Morelli.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Handle with care

Jodi Picoult's latest book deals with ethical and social issues revolving around the birth of a child born with with a disability. Willow has OI (Osteogenesis Imperfecta) - brittle bones. At birth a number of her bones were broken and broken bones were a constant part of her life placing a strain on family members emotionally as well as financially.

When Willow was five Charlotte (Willow's mother) started legal proceedings against Piper Reece (her obstetrician) for not recognising the early symptoms of OI and therefore preventing Charlotte having the choice to terminate the pregnancy. The repercussions of Charlotte's actions are told by those most affected - Charlotte, Sean (her husband), Amelia (Willow's sister), Piper who had been Charlotte's best friend, Marin (Charlotte's lawyer). Each character addresses Willow when recounting what is occurring. The last episode belongs to Willow.

Disintegration of relationships, living with community reaction, trying to do something for the best reasons (in this case creating a secure future for her daughter), blame, guilt, ethics of abortion, strain of disability on family members including concentration on the needs of one family member to the detriment of siblings are some of the issues covered in this novel.

Other novels by Jodi Picoult with medical ethics themes include Change of Heart (a convicted murderer wants his heart donated to the sister of the child who was killed) and My Sister's Keeper (a family has another child in order to save the life of a child).