Friday, December 9, 2011


Tales of the City series of books by Armistead Maupin, Part II of review. Please read Part I posted on December 7th, first. Mr. Maupin has also authored several other books but I haven’t had the opportunity to read them, yet.

Significant Others (5th in series) Three and a half worms
Calamity returns! The characters get back to silly chaos and humor. The Grove sounds like more fun than the Wood but what happened to Frannie’s retreat? Serious topic of HIV and AIDS included, though very little was known about the disease at the time. Characters seem to have abruptly ceased chemical use without explanation.

Sure of You (6th in series) Three worms
No murder mystery or kidnapping, just solid character development though one person has devolved. The holiday in Greece was most amenable. Nickel-Dime chapter is a frank discussion about terminal illness and those left behind.

Michael Tolliver Lives (7th in series) Three and a half worms
Single narrative voice is a modification from the multi-character storyline. Strong storytelling and humor. Some of Michael’s viewpoints are repeated to the point of exasperation, once is adequate. Relationship status should not define a person.

Mary Ann in Autumn (8th in series) Three worms
Return to a simplified multi-character storyline. Interesting twist with the return of a character, though it was obvious to me after the email scene. Several good passages augment character development. Perhaps one or two more books will continue the story…

Spoiler Alert! Don’t read this paragraph if you haven’t read the books, the plot line will be discussed. Michael is my favorite character. He is a “nice” person who muddles through the roller-coaster of life. Mary Ann became unlikable. She morphed into an unfeeling monster and only showed a little vulnerability in the last book. Mrs. Madrigal is fascinating and deserves a biography-style treatment. I like her wisdom about change, “You don’t have to keep up dear. You just have to keep open.”

Stay open to change.
© 2011 Ima B. Musing

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