‘The best moments in reading are when you come across something - a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things - which you had thought special and particular to you. And now, here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out, and taken yours.’ Alan Bennett
“Many a book is like a key to unknown chambers within the castle of one’s own self.” ― Franz Kafka
Monday, 30 March 2015
Wednesday, 25 March 2015
The prize is a brand new copy of Love Virtually by Daniel Glattauer, bought by myself.
(You can read my review of this book here.)The giveaway is open until Thursday 2nd April 2015.
The giveaway is open internationally.
Please enter using the rafflecopter form below.
The winner will be chosen at random and contacted - if I don't hear from them within 48 hours another winner may be chosen at random.
Good luck and thanks very much for visiting.
Monday, 23 March 2015
Friday, 20 March 2015
Now that the past is catching up with her, Catherine’s world is falling apart. Her only hope is to confront what really happened on that awful day . . . even if the shocking truth might destroy her.
‘Catherine had unwittingly stumbled across herself tucked into the pages of the book.’
Disclaimer is a really compelling debut novel from Renee Knight. The narrative has a clever structure and the premise of the story is a real cracker – starting to read a novel and discovering the story is about you, hence the title ‘disclaimer’ – in the novel Catherine Ravenscroft picks up, The Perfect Stranger, there is a line crossing the usual disclaimer out, because although it appears to be fiction, in fact it very much does resemble ‘actual persons’ and events. Not only is the story all about an episode in Catherine’s past, with accurate details, but it also reveals a deep, dark and painful secret that she believed she had successfully buried long ago, kept from everyone including her husband and son, never to be uncovered. The other main character we are introduced to is widower and former teacher Stephen Brigstocke, and chapters alternate between his story in the first-person, and Catherine’s in the third. I was intrigued to see how their lives, and initially seemingly unconnected worlds, would intersect as the novel progressed.
With a page-turning, tense plot, boasting twists and revelations as secrets and lies come to light bit by bit, the past comes back to haunt Catherine and as a reader it was a book I kept wanting to get back to, wondering where the story would take me next. The author does a great job of keeping the reader guessing and wondering about the true nature of what occurred in the past, challenging our assumptions and maintaining suspense, depicting her characters in such a way as to make us unsure as to where our true sympathies should lie.
The story is thought-provoking, questioning the wisdom of the secrets people keep, and the novel deals with loneliness, love, intimidation, obsession and revenge, violence and trust – I won’t say more because the story must be discovered without spoilers. I would have liked perhaps a bit more detail about Robert, Catherine’s husband, to flesh him out a little more clearly. Overall though I thought this was a gripping story. Sometimes psychological thrillers such as this are very strong plot-wise for part of the book but then waver or tail off; for me, in this one the storyline stayed strong until the end.
Review copy received via amazon vine
Monday, 16 March 2015
I've really looked forward to the moment each time a new edition of Newbooks Magazine - for readers and reading groups - arrives in the post over the past few years since I have been subscribing to it, and I have had the chance to read and review some lovely books for them too, as well as attend a brilliant 'Readers Day' that they put on.
If you haven't given it a read as yet, I'd definitely recommend it, it's a great way to find out about new books, I've discovered quite a few debut authors over the years through reading about them in the magazine, and there's also lots of book reviews and other bookish articles of interest, as well as some extracts from new books. It has a compact new look and the presentation looks better than ever too. I love having a magazine all about books! Last year, Newbooks teamed up with nudge books which offers a great selection of online content about books, including reviews and news. This has enabled Newbooks to continue offering their lovely paper magazine in tandem with all the online content on the nudge website Do have a look at both if you can!
Warning: beware the inevitable numerous additions to the to be read pile though....!
The new issue nb84 Spring 2015 is just out and I was really excited and proud and happy and nervous to be featured.
Friday, 13 March 2015
About 'Stranger Child'