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Archive By Author - Alison Reeger Cook


Off the Shelves: Some childhood Christmas favorites remain classic

As I was browsing through the local bookstore last week, I thought about how much literature impacted my love of the holiday season when I was growing up.

December 18, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Graphic novels are not only for geeks

I will confess that one of my literary guilty pleasures is the graphic novel. For the most part, there seems to be a certain stigma about graphic novels and comic books outside of the sci-fi convention crowd or fans of the superhero genre. Many consider graphic novels as not "real" reading - that is, they may view the genre as picture books for adults (and in a vast majority of cases, very adult, given how gory and sexual some mainstream comic books have become nowadays).

December 04, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: ‘The House of Silk’ stays true to original Sherlock Holmes

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic crime-solver, Sherlock Holmes, has been represented in several different forms, especially in the past few years.

November 20, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: Be ready for the uproariously sadistic in ‘When Elves Attack’

Readers will find a new spin on the spirit of Christmas in Tim Dorsey's latest novel that is as weird as its title suggests, "When Elves Attack."

November 06, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: Ghostly tale for young adults has spirited fun

One part ghost story and one part fairy tale, Lauren Oliver's middle-grade novel "Liesl and Po" takes us into the dark, lonely attic where young Liesl has been locked away by her wicked stepmother (in literature, is there really any other kind?) after the death of Liesl's beloved father.

October 23, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: ‘Night Circus’ showcases a stylish spectacle, but sacrifices depth

I always felt October is a magical month: the transformation of the trees into the warm colors of autumn, the crisp breeze that is a much-needed salve to summer's heat. And my favorite holiday is just around the corner, a night of masquerade and treats make Halloween so much fun.

October 09, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: 'Orchard' smells sweet, but tastes dry

I would think out of all the five senses, the sense of smell would be the trickiest to properly portray within a novel.

September 25, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: Festival promotes self-publishing for struggling writers

If you search online for blogs and articles about breaking into the book publishing business nowadays, many of them say that the printed word is dead.

September 11, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: ‘Peculiar Children’ showcases history and imagination

When I read the synopsis for a recently released novel about an enclave of mid-20th century children with paranormal gifts caught in a realm of altered space and time, it whetted the appetite for my science fiction/fantasy sweet tooth.

August 28, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: 'Mrs. Tom Thumb’ honors a little lady with a giant spirit

Last year, I was absorbed in a novel that put a unique perspective on the origins of a literary classic. It gave the reader a glimpse into the mind of the woman who inspired "Alice in Wonderland" by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, better known to the world as Lewis Carroll.

August 14, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Bizarre abounds when you open the ‘Cabinet of Curiosities’

The most frequent explanation I hear from people who say they don't regularly read books is they don't have time.

July 31, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: Georgia’s history is effectively preserved in ‘Sautee Shadows’

If you walk around the main square in downtown Gainesville, you'll come across the art store Frames-You-Nique. Enter this shop and you'll spot displays exhibiting creations by local artists from all walks of life, from paintings to sculptures to self-published books.

July 17, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


Off the Shelves: First impressions about romance genre

While there are eclectic readers out there, most of us tend to read one or two specific genres of books. Naturally we prefer certain topics and styles over others. I usually navigate towards science fiction, fantasy, mainstream fiction or biographies.

July 03, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


A tribute to fathers in classic literature

Lately, I've been reviewing new releases for Off the Shelves, but one reason that I started writing book reviews was to remind readers to go back and revisit the classics every now and then.

June 19, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


‘Burnt Mountain’ an overcooked and odd creation

Peanut butter and chocolate. Dinner and a movie. When someone really enjoys two particular things, oftentimes those two things joined together make each other even better.

June 05, 2011 | Alison Reeger Cook | Columnists


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