Book review: My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

Saturday, March 30, 2019 Permalink

The backcover blurb is a bit vague so I had no idea going into this book what it was going to be about, so when we get to the…. ummm… secret quite early on, it’s a surprise.

We then cruise along for a while (giving us time to absorb what we’re reading) and towards the end – BAM! – another twist; making this a very strong debut novel by US author, Samantha Downing.

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four-stars

Book review: Out of the Dark by Gregg Hurwitz

Friday, January 25, 2019 Permalink

Gregg Hurwitz’s Orphan X series is one of my favourites. I fell a little in love with former orphan-turned-assassin-turned-helper of the helpless, Evan Smoak, in the first book of the series. And this – number four – is probably my favourite since that first outing.

I’d usually grimace at a book blurb that talks about killing the president – my spy/espionage-loving days left back in the 1990s along with my spiral perms – but this book is less about conspiracy theories and government cover-ups and more about self-preservation and ‘doing the right thing’ delivered through clever well-paced action.

Naturally I was forced to read this in a sitting and finished the last page already eager for the next instalment. 

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four-half-stars

Book review: Your Closest Friend by Karen Perry

Wednesday, June 20, 2018 Permalink

The movies Single White Female and Fatal Attraction launched the phenomena of crazy chicks for my generation. Both were shocking at the time of their release and set the bar for obsessiveness. Indeed, 20-30 years on we still talk about SWFing someone or ‘bunny boilers’.

It probably means books involving characters obsessed with others are less surprising than they once were. Or perhaps less horrific (rather than predictable) because we’ve become inured in some way. Your Closest Friend by Karen Perry explores such an obsession, though it’s borne of a very unusual situation.

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three-half-stars

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

Sunday, May 27, 2018 Permalink

“I’m just gonna read for a bit tonight cos I’ve got an early start tomorrow,” I said as I opened The Escape Room by Megan Goldin. I’d add the hashtag…. #famouslastwords but you can guess what comes next.

Yep. Me finishing the book while drinking wine and alternating between caramello koalas and little triangles of processed cheese, while ensonced in my warm bed at my mother’s for hours after my intended bedtime. *

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four-stars

Book review: The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor

Monday, January 1, 2018 Permalink

The backcover blurb mentions the notion of sleepless nights after reading this book. I love crime fiction and can generally cope with the idea of fictional serial killers and psychopaths, but never read (or watch) horror. I’m plagued enough by my own nightmarish failings and whatifs…. I don’t need something else keeping me awake at night. 🙂

However… (for me anyway) this wasn’t that sort of book. To my relief there wasn’t really a sense of menace or foreboding, rather a surprising number of secrets and stories-not-told, and I read it in an afternoon.

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four-stars

Book review: Sunday Morning Coming Down by Nicci French

Sunday, July 23, 2017 Permalink

Long term disciples, devotees, (ahem) readers of my book reviews may recall I’ve struggled with the Nicci French Dr Frieda Klein series. I actually even put one or two of the early books aside rather than continuing with them.

However, I actually enjoyed the last one I read,  Friday On My Mind and commented in that review on the fact I felt that Frieda was – perhaps – evolving a little and become a more likeable character. I’d like to think I wasn’t alone in struggling with early Frieda and the Nicci Gerrard / Sean French pairing decided to insert a little personality into her stiff unrelatable demeanour. I suspect however, it’s probably more about the trajectory they’d always planned for the socially-challenged psychotherapist rather than public outcry. 

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three-half-stars

Book review: The Girl in Kellers Way by Megan Goldin

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 Permalink

Megan Goldin is a former foreign correspondent, reporting on war and terrorism. She’s now back in her hometown of Melbourne penning fiction and The Girl in Kellers Way, her debut novel is set in small-town America and firmly fits into the very popular genre of domestic noir. So it’s a psychological thriller – my fave! 🙂

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four-stars