Skipping Christmas

This entry is part 4 of 10 in the series The 12 Days of Christmas

I love Christmas, as is probably evident from the fact that I’m running a 12 Days of Christmas series. I love the gifts, the sentimentality and the sheer corniness of the whole season. I cry at films like Miracle on 34th Street and White Christmas…

The Ghost

There are some authors whose books you take to straight away – for me those authors include Jilly Cooper and John Grisham. There are others that can take a little more time to get used to. It took me a while to get into Ian Rankin, now I count him as one of my favourite crime writers so I generally find it worth persisting….

Cutting for Stone

A confession to begin with. My name is Louise and I’m a book-buying addict. It can be from Amazon for my Kindle, or in the supermarket or even in the charity shop. Anywhere I can get hold of an interesting looking book I will. One of the downsides of this is that I buy books on a whim and then take a long time to get round to them….

When God Was A Rabbit

A good book – but not the great one I was expecting

Sarah Winman’s debut novel When God Was a Rabbit has been big news in literary circles. It was one of the Richard & Judy bookclub picks for Summer 2011 which virtually guaranteed it bestseller status and received a number of good reviews. Unlike some book snobs I know, I quite like the Richard & Judy choices so with their endorsement, the reviews I had seen and a positive vibe on Twitter I was really looking forward to When God Was A Rabbit.

To say the book was disappointing is a bit too much of an overstatement. I enjoyed the book, I just didn’t love it and with all the hype I had seen about it I was really expecting to fall head over heels for this great new author.

The heroine of the story and narrator of the book is Elly, and that’s where the problem lies. Winman has created a cast of fascinating characters from the lesbian film star to the abused but defiant child, the victim of kidnap and torture to the elderly teacher. Unfortunately the least interesting character is Elly, and yet it is only her voice and her point of view that we hear in any real detail and that’s where the book really does fall down…..

Read more …

Kill and Cure

A run of the mill thriller with too many characters and not enough character development

One of the basic laws of crime thrillers is that they must have a flawed hero – the rule breaking detective, the alcoholic journalist or the idealistic doctor. We’ve all read the novels and recognise the standard characters, some are great, some are woefully cliché ridden. Stephen Davison’s addition to this rolecall is the hero of Kill and Cure…

London Calling

The start of what could be a classic series

London Calling is the first novel in James Craig’s Inspector Carlyle series. So sure is Craig that the book will be a success that he has already announced the next two installments…

To Kill A Mockingbird

The perfect novel – with the greatest literary father ever

Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird is, quite simply, the greatest novel ever written. A story of prejudice and intolerance in the small Alabama town of Maycomb…

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

This entry is part 7 of 7 in the series Harry Potter Books

A fitting finale

By the time Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was released in 2007 fans of the series, including me, were at fever pitch. It was inconceivable to wait until Saturday morning for the book…

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

This entry is part 6 of 7 in the series Harry Potter Books

This entry is part 6 of 7 in the series Harry Potter BooksPublished: 2005 Author: J.K. Rowling   Penultimate adventure sets up a cracking finale   Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince begins in a scary time in the wizarding world.  Voldemort’s return is now widely accepted and his desire to regain his position of […]

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

This entry is part 5 of 7 in the series Harry Potter Books

A long, frustrating wait is well rewarded

JK Rowling made us wait for three long years after Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire before Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix came into bookshops. Three years for us to speculate….