Category Archives: Book Reviews

Book Reviews: January 2021 Reads

I’ve read just four novels in the past two months. Three of which are Robin Hobb’s, whose books I am now obsessed with, and all of which I enjoyed tremendously. How has your reading month been?

Assassin’s Apprentice/Royal Assassin/Assassin’s Quest (Robin Hobb, 1996 – 2002)
5/5

I think myself cured of all spite, but when I touch pen to paper, the hurt of a boy bleeds out with sea-spawned ink, until I suspect each carefully formed black letter scabs over some ancient scarlet wound.

Trilogies often falter mid-way, but the Farseer series suffers none of that. Robin Hobb’s words enrapture and immerse us into the arduous journey of FitzChivalry, growing up as a lost orphan into a reluctant protagonist whose heroics go unseen in the shadows.

It is everything a fantasy story should be – sprawling, exciting, and moving. There are strong bonds forged and broken, sacrifices made out of complicated love and in silence.

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Book Reviews: November 2020 Reads

It’s almost time for me to start writing my big year-end lists of favourites! That means it may get quieter over here in December as I bury myself deep in my pop culture reflections.

Now, does anyone know where I get an extra 25th hour a day for all these writing, art and music projects that I’ve left hanging…

Set My Heart to Five (Simon Stephenson, 2020)
5/5

I asked Dr Glundenstein if he thought humans and bots could ever understand each other the way Rick Deckard and Roy Batty had come to understand one another.

‘Ha!’ he said. ‘Ha!’ I replied. With hindsight, I really do not know what we were Ha-ing about. Humans and bots failing to understand each other is not funny. It is the great tragedy of our times. At least, it is for us bots.

Jared the Android has become depressed, though he doesn’t quite understand why. He decides to embark on a quest to figure out what his new emotions mean, where the world of cinema becomes his teacher.

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Book Reviews: October 2020 (Spooky) Reads

October wasn’t just about the films. I managed to finish some books, including last month’s read I Am The Messenger, which delivered some much needed optimism in tougher times.

Of course, the Halloween season couldn’t end without some horror novels in the mix. Here are my library picks of the month.

I Am The Messenger (Markus Zusak, 2006)
4/5

Why can’t the world hear? I ask myself. Within a few moments I ask it many times. Because it doesn’t care, I finally answer, and I know I’m right. It’s like I’ve been chosen. But chosen for what? I ask.

Ed Kennedy is a 19-year-old cab driver without much hope and thought for his future. That is until playing cards arrive at his doorstep. On the cards are cryptic cyphers that reveal to him names and addresses, only to leave him to figure out what his mission is with them.

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Book Reviews: September 2020 Reads (… and a Preamble to Halloween!)

Our favourite month of the year is here! Well, let’s face it, October isn’t even a real month. It is nothing but days to Halloween, which means a valid excuse for an entire month of horror movies.

While 31 days of consistent posts seems ambitious for me, I have lined up a few reviews for my own teeny horror-thon, Preamble to Halloween. For those of you who have committed to your own Spooktober features, do drop your links below. There’s nothing I love more than reading about my favourite genre.

Back to the books front, it has been a while since I was able to finish 5 in a month. My new Kobo reader, a birthday present to myself, has made late night reads much easier. May the novelty never fade. To my fellow bibliophiles, here are my reads of the month.

Continue reading Book Reviews: September 2020 Reads (… and a Preamble to Halloween!)

Book Reviews: August 2020 Reads

Last month hasn’t been quite as productive, with just two books on the shelves. Who knew where time went? Here’s hoping August has treated you well, and may September be even better.

Undone (by Karin Slaughter, 2009)
4/5

And now, when she looked in the mirror and saw a new line on her own face, a new wrinkle, all she could think was that she was growing old without him.

Former coroner Sara Linton has just moved to Atlanta to start afresh, but soon finds herself drawn back to the violence she was trying to escape. The case that brings the doctor together with the GBI is one of the most brutal yet, featuring graphic descriptions of sadistic torture.

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Book Reviews: July 2020 Reads

July marks the start of some books that have long been idling on my virtual to-read shelf. Say hello to my new favourite authors Hari Kunzru and Karin Slaughter. Thank you Zoë (follow her blog here) for recommending the latter!

White Tears (by Hari Kunzru, 2017)
4/5

I ought to have made that session, ought to have walked through the door of the Saint James Hotel. Instead I’m twenty-seven years old and rotting in the levee with hate in my heart. Starless desolation in my heart. I was never paid for the whip and the gun, never paid for the work I done.

White Tears begins with the serendipitous meeting of two white youths Carter and Seth, brought together by their love for music. When they hear the forgotten hymn of a black bluesman, they decide to deem him Charlie Shaw and make bank on his music. Instead, they uncover his forgotten voice – and all the pain that comes with it.

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