The Road Trip didn’t seem to arrive with the fanfare of its predecessors but is still an enjoyable read. It unfolds in in two timelines. The present (which involves the very long and fraught road trip) and a period of a year or two in the recent past.
Playing Nice is the fourth book by Anthony Capella, writing as JP Delaney. I’ve enjoyed them all, two of them garnering very rare 4.5 stars from me.
I initially approached this a little nervously. Babies swapped accidentally at birth, felt a little ‘done’, but Delaney lulls us into a bit of a false sense of security before throwing in a few surprises.
I was worried I was offering up spoilers by saying Dear Child by Romy Hausmann very much reminded me of Room by Emma Donohue. And then I read the media release and discovered it’s promoted as ‘Gone Girl meets Room’.
It certainly reminded me of Room – initially at least. Of course I’ve read other similar books as the theme of women / children in long-term captivity (having escaped) was pretty popular for a while. (And sadly it seemed fiction was mirroring what we were reading in the newspapers for a while.)
Interestingly this book (originally written in German—translated by Jamie Bulloch—and set in a town near the Czech border) offers something slightly different, as we fairly quickly learn that many of the assumptions we make aren’t—in fact—correct.
I loved Lucy Atkins’ debut book The Missing One. It was in fact one of my favourite books of 2014. I’ve also read her two subsequent novels.
Magpie Lane is Atkins’ latest release and the thing that’s interested me most about her books is that, though are often centred around secrets and strained relationships, they all feel quite different.
Anthony Capella, writing as JP Delaney is garnering quite the reputation for offering readers twisty psychological thrillers. The first I read, The Girl Before was incredibly clever (and very popular) and – surprisingly – I enjoyed his second book, Believe Me even more.
Now I’ve read the third, an obvious theme around fantasy, infatuation and perfection is emerging. And again, in The Perfect Wife, he’s creatively pushing boundaries and giving us something quite new.
Oh my goodness oh my goodness. Well usually I’d say something far more blasphemous but I’m trying to start this review in a vaguely professional manner so too many ‘f’ words first-up might be a bad thing.
I broke my ‘no reading during the day’ rule for this book. I’d been doing chores and got sweaty, so decided to pop into the bath for a soak and a very short half-hour read before getting into my afternoon plans.
Three hours later I closed this book.
Everything recommending this novel talked about its ‘gothic’ nature. And it’s a theme or genre I usually shy away from. I think the fact it’s set in the present (ie. not historical) is something that appealed when I requested it and, though I worried we’d venture into ghosts or otherworldly territory, we never did and I read this in a sitting though hadn’t planned to.
JP Delaney’s debut novel, The Girl Before was one of the most accessed / read posts on this website. Well, that was until hundreds (thousands) visited more recently to read my review of A Simple Favour by Darcey Bell – which I gather is being / has been made into a movie. Hence the interest (though I’m not entirely sure how my review is featuring so prominently!)
I really enjoyed The Girl Before so eagerly awaited Delaney’s second novel, Believe Me, which the author (Tony Strong, writing as JP Delaney) notes is a re-work and re-publication of a manuscript published 17 years earlier.
And given how much I enjoyed this book, it was well worth the revisit.
I read Lucy Atkins’ debut novel The Missing One in 2014 and adored it. It was one of my favourite books of that year – combining a tale of family and long lost secrets with (of all things!) a passion for killer whales. Her next book, The Other Child felt like quite a departure. I enjoyed it but was a little surprised that it seemed so different to its predecessor. And here we are again, with Atkins offering up something completely different, which I guess says something about her versatility as a writer and storyteller.