Book (ARC) review: The Silence in her Eyes by Armando Lucas Correa

Wednesday, January 17, 2024 Permalink

I bookmarked the opening sentences of The Silence in her Eyes by Armando Lucas Correa.

On my eight birthday, the world came to a standstill. My mother’s face became a portrait of pain. My father’s face vanished forever.

The story is narrated by Leah, a woman with akinetopsia – or motion blindness. She explains that images stay with her, like photographs. Then she blinks and there’s a new image. It impacts on the way her story unfolds, the way Correa describes her world, what she sees and what she perceives.

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four-stars

Book review: The Search Party by Hannah Richell

Friday, December 22, 2023 Permalink

The Search Party is the first book I’ve read by Hannah Richell and I enjoyed it though was slightly worried to see a list of characters’ names before the intro. I often struggle if I have to keep flicking back to remind myself who’s who. Though here we’re predominantly in the heads of four couples so don’t have to worry quite as much about the eight children.

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four-stars

Book review: Drowning by TJ Newman

Sunday, May 14, 2023 Permalink

Drowning by TJ Newman was a rare read as I was rivetted from the opening paragraphs. She put me onto that plane as it was going down and, though only briefly exposed to some characters, I already cared about their fate and had a very visceral reaction to what was happening. (Full disclosure, I was – ahem – quite teary before the end of the first chapter*!)

I tend to skim read more than I should – usually over descriptive prose, or sometimes [what I believe to be] irrelevant detail – to get to the action. But by action I mean conversations or things progressing the plot. I’m not really a lover of heart-pumping ACTION action. When watching movies I fast forward fight scenes and car chases.

Getting me truly panicked about a narrative means I need to be really engaged. I need to be there and I need to care. Which was the case here. I wanted to skim as much as possible because I REALLY NEEDED TO KNOW WHAT WOULD HAPPEN!**

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four-half-stars

Book review: The Rush by Michelle Prak

Saturday, May 6, 2023 Permalink

The Rush by Michelle Prak was a bit of a sleeper. I enjoyed it and it’s paced well so I remained intrigued, wondering how the disparate parts of the story we hear (all told over a day or two and out of sequence) intersect. But then Prak throws in a twist when least expected and one I certainly hadn’t seen coming. Thankfully it wasn’t left-field enough to not be feasible. Just shocking. Which is a good thing.

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four-stars

Book review: The Next Girl by Pip Drysdale

Saturday, December 17, 2022 Permalink

The Next Girl by Pip Drysdale is a fascinating read, featuring a narrator who – initially anyway – has her secrets, sharing them with us slowly but surely. At times it’s written in second person, as if Billie is talking directly to us. Filling us on on her past and confiding in us now.

Ultimately, she’s honest – with us anyway – so it’s hard not to like her as we learn what motivates her and feeds her obsession/s.

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four-stars

Book review: Halifax Transgression by Roger Simpson

Sunday, September 18, 2022 Permalink

We’re very much accustomed to books being adapted for television but the opposite – books appearing as a result of popular television shows or movies – is less common. Though we did have the pleasure last year of a Ms Fisher’s Modern Murder Mystery (in print) following the success of that TV series. And more recently the book Heat 2 has been released, complementing the popular 1995 film (Heat). Here, well-known television producer and screenwriter Roger Simpson has adapted his iconic series Halifax fp, from the small screen onto the page.

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three-half-stars

Book review: The Guncle by Steven Rowley

Tuesday, June 7, 2022 Permalink

I ADORED Lily and the Octopus by Steven Rowley giving it a rare 4.5 stars. It was astoundingly clever and such a delight. Rowley wrote with humour and sensitivity and – though not a dog / animal lover – I was completely enchanted by Ted the human and Lily the dachshund. (And, sadly… the octopus that ‘consumed’ her.)

I leapt at the chance to read The Guncle. The blurb had me wondering if it’d be like RWR McDonald’s wonderful ‘The Nancys’ series… featuring Uncle Pike and his partner Devon… albeit without the whodunnit.

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four-stars

Book review: Catch Us The Foxes by Nicola West

Friday, July 9, 2021 Permalink

Oft-referenced advice to wannabe authors is to ‘write what you know’ and Australian author Nicola West has most certainly done that in her debut novel, Catch Us The Foxes.

This is a book within a book. Kind-of. There’s a brief introduction in the present before we’re introduced to The Showgirl’s Secret, a true crime book written by (former) journalist intern Marlowe Robertson. ‘Lo’ is the daughter of the town’s head of police who feels stuck in her small hometown and literally stumbles across the body of a friend. In real life, West grew up in Kiama – the book’s setting – as the daughter of a police officer and is a journalist herself.

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three-half-stars

Book review: The Paris Affair by Pip Drysdale

Wednesday, January 27, 2021 Permalink

I read Pip Drysdale’s The Sunday Girl when it was released in 2018 and her subsequent novel of suspense The Strangers We Know the following year. Both feature flawed but engaging narrators and relationships-gone-bad, with themes around trust and disappointment.

The Paris Affair initially had me comparing it to Netflix’s Emily in Paris, given there’s a slightly similar feel to the early pages with a confident and ambitious Harper heading off to Paris to work for an English-language French publication. When we meet her she’s keen to wow the world but struggling to find her feet professionally.

Here however, we’ve got the added bonus of a murder. So, Emily in Paris meets The Girl on the Train. Perhaps.

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four-stars