Book review: Girl A by Abigail Dean

Friday, January 15, 2021 Permalink

There’s been a bit of buzz around Girl A by Abigail Dean. That can be both a good and bad thing. I read it earlier than planned as I was excited about it, but at the same time I probably had heightened expectations as a result.

For much of this book I wasn’t sure if I was reading about a cult, or about kidnapped children. Dean keeps it pretty vague for a while and readers are on edge, recognising that we don’t have the full story. Waiting for more.

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A holiday or a break from oneself?

Thursday, January 14, 2021 Permalink

I’ve talked about this before. A year or two after my seachange I joked about the idea of going on holiday to some nice apartment in a coastal town somewhere, when—in fact—I lived in a nice apartment on the beach in a coastal town. Of course I’m not ‘right’ on the beach now, but have my beach views so many would opt for my house as a holiday destination.

Location aside, it occurs to me the whole idea of a holiday is kinda ironic. I mean, isn’t it?

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Book review: The Schoolgirl Strangler by Katherine Kovacic

Tuesday, January 12, 2021 Permalink

I never read non-fiction, predominantly because I read to escape so I don’t actually want reality. I usually however also struggle with the structure of non-fiction books, even when events are running chronologically there’s overlap and most just don’t work (for me!).

I was keen to read The Schoolgirl Strangler by Katherine Kovacic however, because I like her writing and met her at an event in 2019. At the time she commented on coming across these cases when researching her first book, the Ned Kelly Award-nominated The Portrait of Molly Dean. So I figured I’d push myself out of my comfort zone to kick off 2021.

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New sneakers. Who dis?

Monday, January 11, 2021 Permalink

I have new sneakers. I know that’s not a big deal for most people. Indeed once it wouldn’t have been for me either. When I was a regular gym-goer and exerciser I used to get new sneakers (aka: sandshoes, runners, joggers) each year. I was – back then – a Nike addict so the brand was usually a no-brainer and often I had several pairs, cross-trainers for sport or gym classes; and running shoes for… well for walking.

Regular readers would know however that my exercise regime has been sporadic over the last decade (or two). When I’m on a fitness roll – as I was before my seachange – I attended gym classes 4-5 days a week. And sometimes walked as well.

Of course since then, I’ve basically done SFA.

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Book review: The Therapist by BA Paris

Wednesday, January 6, 2021 Permalink

The Therapist is the third book I’ve read by BA Paris and both others, Bring Me Back and The Dilemma, were edge-of-your-seat reads.

Our main narrator for The Therapist is Alice who’s recently moved with her partner into a new enclave in London, called The Circle. It sounds a bit Steptoe Wife-like but it isn’t. The couples living there are all quite different albeit slightly insular in the gated community.

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Book review: The Last Thing To Burn by Will Dean

Tuesday, January 5, 2021 Permalink

I’d completely misunderstood the blurb for The Last Thing To Burn by Will Dean. I assumed it to be one of those kidnap victim sagas about someone abducted and held for many years (like Room and many books since). And it kinda is. But’s also about the far weightier and fraught topic of human trafficking, or at least its aftermath and its repercussions.

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Starting the new year with a splutter

Monday, January 4, 2021 Permalink

So much for starting the new year with a bang. First I published an overly-dramatic post about food and my weight. Then I accidentally got sunburnt when visiting the local pool for a friend’s birthday celebrations. (A no-no for me as my father ultimately died as a result of skin cancer. Sort of.)

But, as this morning rolled around and those gainfully employed prepared to return to work, I decided I’d start the year afresh and on a positive note. My university break was over and I’d already done the reading required for the coming week. I was due to head back to my over 50s exercise classes and my clothes were laid out ready.

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Book review: My Best Friend’s Murder by Polly Phillips

Sunday, January 3, 2021 Permalink

I was part-way through My Best Friend’s Murder by Polly Phillips when it occurred to me it might be set in Australia. What I very much liked about that thought was not that it might be set in my home country, but rather it translated into any number of locations. An excellent idea for a debut author which would make the book relevant and relatable across a number of english-speaking markets. Of course there might (also) have been references to places or landmarks I missed or didn’t recognise!

And I very much enjoyed this book, reading it in a sitting on Christmas night when I was supposed to be bingeing on a new Netflix release.

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Half full or half empty?

Saturday, January 2, 2021 Permalink

[TW: Disordered-eating]

I want something from food that it’s not giving me.

It’s been two years since I was employed full-time and I’m fairly sure I’ve spent most of that eating. In fact, it increasingly feels as if I am constantly scouring my cupboard and fridge for fodder but it’s finally come to a head.

Because nothing is tasty enough. Fulfilling enough. Nothing lasts long enough.

I often feel uncomfortably full. Over-sated but unsatisfied.

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