Likely Stories

Thursday 7:45am and 4:45pm. Saturday 8:35am. Sunday 9:35am

So many books, so little time!  Jim McKeown hosts this weekly review of fiction, poetry, non-fiction and biographies.  Jim is a lifelong voracious reader who learned to read by the “rule of 50.”  If he’s not engaged in the characters, the prose, or the plot by page 50, he puts in a book mark and returns it to the shelf.   Likely Stories  is a three and a half minute module that we think you’ll give “FIVE STARS!” 

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Elizabeth Strout has a number of excellent novels of love and death, danger and pleasure.  Oh William! Is her latest effort.  She is a New York Times bestselling author with numerous awards including Olive Kitteridge which awarded her a Pulitzer Prize.  Another of her fine novels is My Name is Lucy Barton.  She is also a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize. 


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Kate Atkinson’s first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, was named England’s Whitbread Book of the Year in 1996.  Since then, she has written nine more novels, and she lives in Edinburgh.  Transcription is a recent novel.


Likely Stories : American Rust, by Philipp Meyer

Dec 16, 2021

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Philipp Meyer grew up in Baltimore.  After spending several years volunteering at a trauma center in downtown Baltimore, he attended Cornell University, where he studied English.  He split his time between Texas and upstate New York.  American Rust is his first novel.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Paula Hawkins is the author of The Girl on the Train and Into the Water.  A Slow Fire Burning is her latest novel. These superb novels are by turns frightful, serious, and filled with deceit—by the three main characters.  The story revolves around a gruesome murder, which arouses the suspicions of other characters.  These three women are connected to the victim. 

  

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

I decided to gather a collection of the best books from 2021.  Some have lagged from earlier memories, and several from new titles ahead.  

  

Likely Stories : Matrix, by Lauren Groff

Nov 25, 2021

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Lauren Groff is a two-time National Book Award finalist and the New York Times bestselling author of the novels Fates and Furies and Florida.  Her latest novel is Matrix.  This terrific novel demonstrates the raw power of female creativity in a corrupt world.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Rebecca Raisin is the author of several novels, including the ‘Little Paris’ series.  Her short stories have been published in various anthologies and fiction magazines series.  The Little Bookshop on the Seine is another novel set in a bookshop.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Lily King is the author of several novels with terrific stories, especially The Pleasing Hour, and The English Teacher.  King is the recipient of a Whiting Award.  She lives in Maine.  Her novels are stimulating and deserve my highest praise.  Father of the Rain is her third novel, which spans three decades of a volatile relationship between a frighteningly charismatic, alcoholic father and the daughter who cannot help but leave him. 

  

I’m Jim McKeown.  Welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Stacey Lee is a New York Times bestselling author of several novels, such as Under a Painted Sky, and Outrun the Moon.  She won the PEN Center USA Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction and the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature.  She was born in Southern California, and she now lives with her family outside San Francisco.  Downstairs Girl is her latest novel.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Erika Swyler, a graduate of New York University, is a writer and playwright whose work has appeared in literary journals and anthologies.  She was born and raised on Long Island’s North Shore.  The Book of Speculation is her first novel.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

The Diary by Eileen Goudge is a touching tale of love, betrayal, and danger.


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Mauve: How One Man Invented a Color That Changed the World by Simon Garfield is an interesting story and full of information about chemistry and science in general. 

 

The story begins with Simon Garfield, “Sir William Perkins seldom traveled abroad.  He wrote in a modest and unflowery style.  Quote: ‘The first public laboratory I worked in was the Royal College of Chemistry in Oxford Street, London, in Eighteen-fifty-three to Eighteen-fifty-six.’  It wasn’t like the great electric laboratories of today, he noted, with your huge booming furnaces.  ‘There were no Bunsen burners—we had short lengths of iron tube covered with

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Ann Hood’s first novel, Three-Legged Horse is one I have treasured since I first read it in 1989 when I met her at an American Library Association meeting.  She graciously signed my copy.  Ann is an American novelist and short Story writer.  She is the author of fourteen novels, four memoirs, a short story collection, as well as other favorites of mine, The Italian Wife and The Obituary Writer.

 

I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

Patricia Highsmith died February 4, 1995.  She was an American novelist and short story writer widely known for her psychological thrillers.  The Cry of the Owl is one of my favorites. 


I’m Jim McKeown, welcome to Likely Stories, a weekly review of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry.

I have often tried numerous times to achieve even a minimal amount of skill on a piano.  Thad Carhart’s wonderful book, The Piano on the Left Bank: Discovering a Forgotten Passion in a Paris Atelier, gives me many interesting insights into music.  Thad is a dual citizen of Ireland and the US, and he has spent much of his life in France.  He now lives in Paris with his wife and children.


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