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    KALEIDOSCOPE by Dorthy Gilman


    Ballantine Books, January 2002

    Psychic Madame Karitska uses her psychometry (ability to learn about a person by touching something that they owned or held) to help the police and her clients. A wide range of people from all walks of life find their way into her storefront office and Karitska gives them all coffee, tea, or chocolate, then deals with their problems as best she can. Although not all results are positive, Karitska manages to help her clients avoid a wide range of far worse fates.

    Author Dorothy Gilman (see also our reviews of other novels by this author) offers a kaleidoscope of human life as a wide range of clients bring their problems to Karitska. Through Karitska, most learn about themselves rather than about their supposed questions--and that, of course, is the point.

    Gilman's writing is simplistic. KALEIDOSCOPE is approachable by young readers and may seem somewhat too simple for adult readers. Still, the novel has its rewards and, in many ways, Karitska is a charming character.

    Two Stars

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