Reviews by Andy Baird

The Lightning Conductor Discovers America

by Alice Muriel Williamson

Equally charming sequel to "The Lighting Conductor," a delightful mixture of travelogue, mystery and romance told with enthusiasm and humor. Like its predecessor, this story takes the form of letters from the various protagonists, so one is treated to several different views of some of the principal events. It's a thoroughly enjoyable read, and I look forward to "The Lightning Conductor Returns," the third book in the series.

Reviewed on 2009.06.16

Farewell to the Master

by Harry Bates

I respectfully disagree with Gil: this is one of those rare cases where the film adaptation was far better than the story. Harrison's feeble technical premise--that a living creature can be recreated from a flawed sound recording--was wisely discarded by the screenwriters, and the other changes they made to the story were all to the good.

"Farewell to the Master" is a mediocre story at best--one of the weaker efforts from a writer who was capable of much better work. It's worth reading mainly because it inspired such an outstanding film.

Reviewed on 2009.04.17

Tom Sawyer Abroad

by Mark Twain

This little-known sequel to "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" has Tom, Huck and Jim soaring across the Atlantic to Africa in a dirigible balloon invented by a mad professor. It's rollicking fun while it lasts, with Twain's typical satirical touches... but the story peters out at the end, as if the author had lost interest. Still well worth reading if you're a fan of the Huck & Tom adventures, though!

Reviewed on 2008.07.16

Tom Sawyer Detective

by Mark Twain

Tom struts his stuff as an amateur detective in this book, loosely based on an actual Swedish criminal case. If you enjoyed watching Tom "spread himself" at Injun Joe's trial, you'll revel in this detective story, which ends in just the kind of courtroom drama Tom glories in.

Reviewed on 2008.07.16

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