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The Week’s Best Book Reviews 2/20/13

[In this feature, we highlight a handful of the best book reviews appearing over the weekend in major newspapers. Follow it here.]

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Siege 13, by Tamas Dobozy. Reviewed by Jeff VanderMeer (Washington Post).

Anyone that knows me will take one look at the cover of Siege 13 and find it unsurprising that it caught my eye. But this collection of linked stories that explores WW2-era Budapest as well as Hungarian immigrants in modern Toronto,  sounds like it genuinely deserves all the attention it can get. It sounds like a harrowing collection but at the same time VanderMeer fawns:

…this book is too full of life and fascinating characters to be depressing. The sheer variety of Dobozy’s approaches to telling stories, and his commitment not only to provoke thought but to entertain, constitute a virtuoso performance. “Siege 13” is without question one of my favorite story collections ever.

I’ve already ordered a copy.

Find it on Goodreads.

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Our Occulted History, by Jim Marrs. Reviewed by Christopher Kelly (New York Times).

I get a lot of guilty pleasure enjoyment out of conspiracy theory stories, and have been happy to tune into TV shows and even check out a book about ancient aliens, secret societies, government cover-up and the like. So of course the subtitle of this book, “Do The Global Elite Conceal Ancient Aliens?” caught my eye. Most of Marrs’s books, it seems, have ended up being cancelled just before publication, presumably for being too crazy. I’m intrigued, though I may have to wait for The History Channel to serialize it.

Find it on Goodreads.

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Revenge, by Yoko Ogawa. Reviewed by Anna Mundow (Barnes and Noble Review).

I really enjoyed Ogawa’s The Diving Pool when I reviewed it a few years back. The three novellas it held were eerie and sharply written. Right off the bat, Mundow casts Ogawa’s work as “the literary equivalent of an Escher drawing.” That works for me. If I hadn’t just ordered a book of stories back in the first blurb of this piece, I’d probably pick it up right now.

Find it on Goodreads.

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Quickly: This biography of Banksy could be interesting, though it doesn’t sound terribly well-written. Nonfic fans: The Searchers looks fairly interesting.

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