Wednesday, 23 May 2018

When the Serpent Bites by Nesly Clerge

Book Review

When the Serpent Bites by Nesly Clerge - Reading, Writing, Booking

"Frederick Starks's need gnawed at him like a painful, roving itch."

When The Serpent Bites (The Starks Trilogy Book 1) was written by Nesly Clerge and published by IngramSpark.

When the Serpent Bites has some strong elements and it's a fairly fresh concept, at least in my reading. However, I failed to connect with the main character of Starks, I found a lot of his actions and motivations at first predictable then, once it seems like he's going to see the light, he acts in an unbelievable way. It's clearly set up so that over the trilogy Starks is going to have some major personal insights, but it seems to stall in this first one of the series.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Tangerine by Christine Mangan

Book Review

Tangerine by Christine Mangan - Reading, Writing, Booking

"And there she was: my past, made corporeal."

Tangerine was released in the UK on 22nd March 2018. It is written by Christine Mangan and published by Little Brown.

A lot of people have compared Tangerine to a Hitchcock film, and it definitely has the slow-burning suspense and underlying threat throughout that Hitckcock was famous for, plus the 1950s setting. However, it lacks something that makes Hitchcock the genius he was. There aren't that many surprises, and the ones that are in there are fairly obvious. But, this is a slow burning, atmospheric book that's an ideal beach or lazy day read, just the right amount of suspense without being too exhausting.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

The Craftsman by Sharon Bolton

Book Review

The Craftsman by Sharon Bolton - Reading, Writing, Booking

" be a woman of Pendle is both a blessing and a curse."

The Craftsman is released in the UK today, 3rd May 2018. It is written by Sharon Bolton and published by Trapeze.

I can tell I enjoyed The Craftsman because when I went back through my Kindle I found that I hadn't made any notes. Usually if I'm going to be reviewing a book I'll make a couple of notes or highlight parts to quote, but I was so into this book that I didn't break to note anything down.

It does mean that I don't have any notes to work from so this review may be a bit of a ramble!

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Beartown by Fredrik Backman

Book Review

Beartown by Fredrik Backman - Reading, Writing, Booking

"What happens to a town that doesn't grow? It dies."

Beartown will be released in paperback in the UK on 3rd May 2018. It is written by Fredrik Backman and published by Michael Joseph.

Although I did enjoy Beartown (also called The Scandal in the US), and I think there is some excellent writing and character studies, I didn't rate it as the five star masterpiece that everyone else seems to think it is. It's got a great setting and background but sometimes I felt it didn't really know what it was, it veered between thriller, coming of age and sports fiction, which isn't a problem, but there were elements  I felt didn't gel.

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin

Book Review

Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin - Reading, Writing, Booking

"...there is this terrible, wonderful novel in every human being."

Paper Ghosts will be published in the UK on 19th April 2018. It is written by Julia Heaberlin and published by Michael Joseph.

I was really excited to read Julia Heaberlin's new book as I loved Black-Eyed Susans. Paper Ghosts is both recognisably Heaberlin and also very different. It's not like anything I've ever read, it's a road trip, character exploration and serial killer thriller whirlwind, one which I enjoyed.

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

The Western Wind by Samantha Harvey

Book Review

The Western Wind by Samantha Harvey - Reading, Writing, Booking

"Men die because they're born to die."

The Western Wind was released in the UK on 1st March 2018. It is written by Samantha Harvey and published by Jonathan Cape.

If you're expecting a cosy murder mystery with a rotund clergyman at the centre then The Western Wind isn't for you. However, neither is it a bloodthirsty shock a minute thriller. The Western Wind is a slow paced mystery set in the 15th century with a thoughtful and sometimes pompous priest unravelling the mystery. I quite liked the pace of the book, it's slow and steadily unravelling yet it was oddly riveting.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

10 Peter Pan Tattoos - Literary Ink Series

I haven't done a Literary Tattoos post in ages and this one was particularly fun for me to research as Peter Pan was one of my favourite books when I was younger. I've deliberately tried to steer clear of tattoos inspired by the Disney film of Peter Pan as I want to focus on ones from the book by J.M. Barrie. There's probably a bit of cross over but I've tried to include the literary ones wherever possible.

Also, my internet has been really slow today and Pinterest hasn't worked at all so this has taken me all, bloody, day. Please appreciate it!

Monday, 26 March 2018

The Riviera Express by TP Fielden

Book Review

The Riviera Express by TP Fielden - Reading, Writing, Booking

"...there were two face to Miss Dimont."

The Riviera Express is written by TP Fielden and published by HQ.

I meant to post this review ages ago but it sort of got lost as I had so many NetGalley proofs to read. And honestly, it was a little bit of a let down. Yes, it's cosy crime with a kooky detective in a pretty setting, but it just didn't quite hit the button for me.

Monday, 12 March 2018

The Darkness by Ragnar Jónasson

Book Review

The Darkness by Ragnar Jónasson - Reading, Writing, Booking

"...the visions of the past haunting her, the fear of the future looming over her."

The Darkness will be released in the UK on 15th March 2018. It is written by Ragnar Jónasson and published by Michael Joseph.

I really wanted to like The Darkness, I've never read any Ragnar Jónasson before but have heard good things about the Dark Iceland series. So, when this popped up on NetGalley, part of the new Hidden Iceland series, I thought I'd give it a go.

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Bring Me Back by B A Paris

Book Review

Bring Me Back by B A Paris - Reading, Writing, Booking

"I know we're not going to find her."

Bring Me Back will be released in the UK on 8th March 2018. It is written by B A Paris and published by HQ.

Bring Me Back started well, but ultimately it went down a rather ridiculous path. I guessed the ending, even though I thought that it couldn't really be true because it was completely unbelievable!

Thursday, 1 March 2018

Carnivore by Jonathan Lyon

Book Review

Carnivore by Jonathan Lyon - Reading, Writing, Booking

"Evil is necessary to live vividly."

Carnivore was released in the UK on 24th August 2017. It is written by Jonathan Lyon and published by HQ.

Carnivore has garnered very mixed reviews, ranging from five star rambles about how amazing and daring it is, to no star rants about how it's disgusting and rambling. I thought it would be a book that I would either love or hate, but actually I'm resolutely in the middle. It is shocking and explores the psyche of a seriously damaged young man well, but after a while all the shocks and stream of consciousness narrative actually got a bit boring.

Wednesday, 21 February 2018

The Coffin Path by Katherine Clements

Book Review

The Coffin Path by Katherine Clements - Reading, Writing, Booking

"One coin marks the first to go.
A second bodes the fall.
The third will seal a sinner's fate.
The Devil take them all."

The Coffin Path was released in the UK 8th February 2018. It is written by Katherine Clements and published by Headline.

This is another review that I'm very late in posting, I'm now trying to catch up with myself, almost there.

I've been reading quite a lot of short ghost stories recently, I like M.R. James, Edgar Allen Poe and H.P. Lovecraft. So when The Coffin Path cropped up on NetGalley and was described as 'The perfect ghost story' I thought I'd give it a go.

This is an excellent book to read in a cold and miserable winter, it has a good balance of supernatural and human interactions. I do think the story line was a little predictable, but I still enjoyed the read.

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

The Wicked Cometh by Laura Carlin

Book Review

The Wicked Cometh by Laura Carlin - Reading, Writing, Booking

"How simple life might be if we could shape time to our need, but instead its silent footsteps walk on, leaving me in their wake."

The Wicked Cometh was published in the UK on 1st February 2018. It is written by Laura Carlin and published by Hodder & Stoughton.

Oh dear, I am behind on my NetGalley reviews. I meant to get The Wicked Cometh, and a number of others, posted before their publication dates, but due to Christmas, holiday and then illness I've fallen spectacularly behind. Expect a number of belated reviews over the next couple of weeks.

And I'm aware I haven't done a monthly favourites for ages either, maybe I'll manage February.

Anyway, onto the review. I must say that the title drew me to this book and I was hoping for a dark Victorian drama. I did get this, but it was a lot slower and jumbled than I'd hoped, and I must admit the wicked took along time in comething.

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

#BlogTour - Force of Nature by Jane Harper

#BlogTour - Force of Nature by Jane Harper - Reading, Writing, Booking

"Alice brought this on herself."

Force of Nature will be released in hardback on 8th February 2018.It is written by Jane Harper and published by Little Brown.

I'm really excited to be a part of the Force of Nature blog tour. I've only recently read and reviewed the prequel to this book, The Dry, but I loved it and when I had the opportunity to review the sequel I jumped at the chance.

#BlogTour - Force of Nature by Jane Harper - Reading, Writing, Booking

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Conclave by Robert Harris

Book Review

Conclave by Robert Harris - Reading, Writing, Booking

"Any man who is truly worthy must consider himself unworthy."

Conclave was written by Robert Harris and published by Arrow.

Apologies for the radio silence, but I came down with what felt like the Black Death but what the doctor said was a viral infection. It knocked me out for a couple of weeks and I'm only now feeling human.

I'm back with a review of Conclave by Robert  Harris. I wasn't going to actually review this book, just read it for pleasure, but it was so good that I feel I've got to share it. Even though I'm actually quite late to the party as it was published a couple of years ago.

Monday, 15 January 2018

The Dry by Jane Harper

Book Review

The Dry by Jane Harper - Reading, Writing, Booking

"It wasn't as though the farm hadn't seen death before, and the blowflies didn't discriminate."

The Dry was written by Jane Harper and was published by Little Brown.

This is a grim first line, and one that sets the tone for the rest of the book. But though The Dry is dark it's also authentic and engaging. It's easy to see why this Australian outback crime story is so popular.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor

Book Review

The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor - Reading, Writing, Booking

"For who are we if not the sum of our experiences, the things that we gather and collect in life? Once you strip those away we become just a mass of flesh, bone and blood vessels."

The Chalk Man will be released in the UK on 11th January 2018. It is written by C.J. Tudor and published by Michael Joseph.

I often find that hugely hyped books just don't live up to the buildup generated around them, but I'm pleased to say that The Chalk Man is one of the few that does. I've been seeing lots of good reviews for this one, and the premise sounded right up my street, so I requested it from NetGalley and I'm so glad I did because I thoroughly enjoyed it. I've read a lot of thrillers recently that have been only OK and I was a bit wary to have to read another one that didn't grip me, but The Chalk Man was a breath of fresh air.