Category Archives: Book Reviews

The Christie Affair, Nina de Gramont – Book Review

There’s been plenty of books over the years which have reimagined what happened during those 11 days when famous author Agatha Christie disappeared. And, maybe this one isn’t the best exploration of the subject matter as it actually doesn’t have that much to do with Agatha. But I thoroughly enjoyed this book – it was a gripping, multi-layered historical drama – with a little Christie-esque murder mystery thrown in too!

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Filed under Book Reviews, Drama, Historical, Mystery

More Than You’ll Ever Know, Katie Guitierrez – Book Review

That elegant, decadent cover and the promise of a thrilling tale of love and lies across 1980s American and Mexico really drew me into reading this debut. And it is an impressive debut, with writing as elegant as the cover. But, while it uses a true crime writer’s investigation as a tool to tell the story, it’s worth knowing before starting that this isn’t really a crime thriller.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Crime, Drama, Family

The Family Game, Catherine Steadman – Book Review

Well this book was a lot of fun! A brilliant cat-and-mouse thriller which had me racing through the pages. I hadn’t come across this author before but something about this latest release had me intrigued – and it turns out she’s a woman of many talents, as she’s an actress on Downton Abbey too! As it happens I don’t watch that show – but I’ll definitely be reading her books from now on.

When author Harry meets wealthy bachelor Edward, it almost feels too good to be true. The two quickly become a couple and decide to tie the knot – but there’s one more thing they have to deal with first, the in-laws. Not just any in-laws – Edward is the descendent of one of America’s most rich and powerful families. And they like to play games.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Psychological thriller

Mad Honey, Jodi Picoult & Jennifer Finney Boylan – Book Review

Jodi Picoult is back on form once again with this latest offering, in which she works with Jennifer Finney Boylan to create a compelling and beautifully written story which peels back the layers on themes of identity, wrapping it up neatly into an emotive murder mystery.

Olivia is a beekeeper and single mother to her teenage son, Asher. She’s escaped an abusive relationship with her ex-husband to build a life for herself and Asher back in her hometown. And it’s going well – Asher is a popular teen, playing hockey on the high school team, and he’s just got himself a new girlfriend, Lilly – who has recently arrived in town.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Drama, Mystery

Tell Me An Ending, Jo Harkin – Book Review

This shiny new sci-fi drama debut about memory erasure procedures naturally draws parallels to Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, one of my favourite films. And I can see the comparisons, but this book tells a story all of its own.

At the heart is Nepenthe, an organisation which makes a business of erasing unwanted, painful or traumatic memories. We are introduced to Nepenthe at a point of controversy, when problems have been discovered with the procedure – people are experiencing ‘traces’ of their forgotten memories. And people want their lost memories back.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Drama, Sci-Fi, Speculative

Idol, Louise O’Neill – Book Review

This was the first I’ve read from this author, despite being intrigued by some of her previous releases. It won’t be my last. This book floored me – it’s an incredibly clever contemporary drama which explores a whole range of topical issues (I’ll get into that), but with the unputdownable pace of a thriller.

The cover may allude to it being a beach read, and it is that in a way – it’s an accessible, easy read – and yet it seamlessly weaves together sensitive and timely topics into a gripping narrative. There’s light and dark and all sorts of shades of grey. And I loved it.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Drama

Upgrade, Blake Crouch – Book Review

Blake Crouch is fast becoming an auto-buy author for me. His edgy sci-fi thrillers take a concept you think you understand and turn it completely on its head in a way which is truly unputdownable. Team that with authentic, sympathetic characters, and you’ve got a winner in my eyes.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Dystopia, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Carrie Soto Is Back, Taylor Jenkins Reid – Book Review

Well, I never thought I’d love what is essentially a sports drama. But I’ll read anything that TJR comes out with, and this turned out to be one of my favourite novels of hers yet.

Don’t get me wrong, there is a whole lot of tennis in this book. But the author managed to get me captivated with Carrie’s story and completely invested into the importance of each and every match – I often found myself on tenterhooks, waiting to see which way a player would jump, which way the ball would drop. And I never thought that would be the case with a book about tennis.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Drama

Metronome, Tom Watson – Book Review

This was a strange, compelling and, ultimately, bleak story. I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. When I started reading this novel, it immediately sucked me into its bizarre, dystopian world which just feels a little off-kilter. It lost me a little in the middle, but it’s definitely a unique tale – a quiet drama set against an epic survival backdrop in a strange dystopian twist on our reality.

In this reality, a couple is exiled to a harsh, almost uninhabitable island as a punishment for their crimes. Because of the nature of the island, they have to take a special pill every 8 hours in order to survive the unnatural atmosphere. But they’re counting down the days until their parole, one pill at a time.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Drama, Dystopia

Book Lovers, Emily Henry – Book Review

I don’t often read romance, but this author has somehow slipped into my regular reads over the past couple of years. She can be relied on to leave me with a warm, fuzzy feeling – and sometimes that’s just what I need.

And yes, they can be a little cheesey in places, but you just need to embrace it – and the author does that really well herself with this latest offering. It’s a modern, fresh take on the classic rom-com tropes, which isn’t afraid to make fun of itself just a little.

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Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Romance