Book review: The Poison Garden by Alex Marwood

Sunday, July 21, 2019 Permalink

This is an interesting book. Interesting and frustrating in some ways. It’s a reminder though that we all have our beliefs… ones we assume to be the correct. We’re often raised with these beliefs so don’t question their veracity. It’s a given (for us) that it’s others who are wrong. Particularly if THEIR beliefs seem diametrically opposed. 

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four-stars

Holiday dreaming

Thursday, July 18, 2019 Permalink

I know it’s ridiculous to be fantasising about having a holiday when I’m not working anyway, but it has to be said; being unemployed and actively looking for work (and stressing about the lack of it and its impact on one’s finances) is very different from being on holidays. Or even being retired.

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Book review: Elevator Pitch by Linwood Barclay

Tuesday, July 16, 2019 Permalink

I’m posting this review earlier than planned as I accidentally read some of my TBR pile in the wrong order. As I only had this one electronically I didn’t have the usual media release and mistakenly thought it was out before some of the others on my list. So, oops.

Also, I’m a fan of Linwood Barclay and have read and reviewed many of his other books (and series) here, so happy to have read it slightly earlier than intended.

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four-stars

Ageing (un)gratefully

Monday, July 15, 2019 Permalink

I wrote last week about ageing ungracefully. It was mostly about the physical side of it. Or at least the aesthetic side.

Of course I realise ageing is about far more than our physical selves. We often hear about those who gain new leases of life after middle age, or those who go on to achieve great things… struck by inspiration.

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51 up: a summary not a snapshot

Thursday, July 11, 2019 Permalink

Lydia (Where The Wild Things Are) commented on the TV show 63 Up (UK version of the 7-Up series) recently and coincidentally I’d watched it as well.

She suggested the ‘check-in’ every 7 years seemed to ensure those involved analysed (albeit not in a scientific way) their life more than most of us as they had to dissect it (again, not in a scientific way) for their interviews.

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Book review: Under Currents by Nora Roberts

Wednesday, July 10, 2019 Permalink

I love Nora Roberts’ romantic suspense novels. They usually offer up a good balance of the two, which is important given my love of thrillers and suspense and antipathy towards romance. (As such.)

Interestingly, though this includes some suspense, it’s kinda short-lived. It grapples with some unpleasant themes (domestic violence and family violence, so trigger alert for some), but the thing I enjoyed most about this book was, in fact, how the romance played out and the relationship between our two lead characters.

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four-stars

Ageing (dis)gracefully

Monday, July 8, 2019 Permalink

I have been walking this earth for 51 years. Well, 51 and a half really. And I think I’m finally starting to accept that I’m ageing.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think my life is over. I know people achieve all sorts of things in their 50s, 60s and beyond. Indeed I know 70-odd year olds who are certainly healthier and fitter than I am.

But I think for a long time I’ve been in denial that I am ‘middle-aged’.

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Book review: The Chain by Adrian McKinty

Sunday, July 7, 2019 Permalink

There is currently a LOT of hype around The Chain by Adrian McKinty. I keep seeing articles on social media about the film rights of a book written by an Uber driver sold for a seven figure sum.

There’s actually an interesting note in the back of this book from McKinty about life as a writer. He’s got his successful Sean Duffy series under his belt but it’s a reminder that many seemingly-successful creatives (authors and the like) don’t actually earn much from their craft. Most have other jobs and alternative sources of income. Which makes me feel a bit grumpy about some idiotic athletes who earn gazillions.

But enough of my ranting. Let’s get down to it cos this standalone by McKinty is (#spoileralert) certainly worth all of the praise it’s getting. I wasn’t sure I was going to be enamoured but I was gobsmacked at how ‘real’ it all felt from the opening lines.

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four-half-stars

Book review: Never Look Back by AL Gaylin

Saturday, July 6, 2019 Permalink

It’s increasingly common for books to reflect popular culture – true crime podcasts and the like. I’ve now read a few novels that have pursued a story either via the podcast or for the purposes of one. (As an aside, Sadie by Courtney Summers, which does exactly that was one of my favourite books for the first half of 2019.)

This is a little different in that it’s mostly about the investigation which may (or may not) result in a podcast. But I guess this book by AL Gaylin also takes the opportunity to consider 21st century journalism, news and our consumption of information. In some ways it’s a peripheral issue, but in others a reminder of how different today’s world is from that of 40yrs ago.

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three-stars