Reading round up: November

The worst month. So dark. Not yet Christmas. No firework display this year. But at least the books are here to help brighten the gloom. Notes to Self – Emilie Pine This is a book of essays that someone somewhere raved about and I bought on idle curiosity. But it’s quite marvellous. I have no… Continue reading Reading round up: November

Review: Starling by Sarah Jane Butler

Some years ago I was on a writing course with what was then the Unthank School and one of my classmates was Sarah Jane Butler who was starting to write a book – that book has become Starling. Starling and her mother Mar are travellers, moving around the country, living off the land, and often… Continue reading Review: Starling by Sarah Jane Butler

September reading round up

Is it just that ‘events’ seem to be happening so fast or did September just fly by? We’re into autumn proper now and the season change is my favourite time of year. It helps being a September baby, I guess. Anyway, here’s my reading round up for the month – a bumper crop. A Thousand… Continue reading September reading round up

Review: The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell

How do you follow Hamnet? Such an acclaimed book that touched a lot of people, Hamnet was never going to be an easy one to move on from. I love Maggie O’Farrell’s work, she is one of my favourite writers. Her last three books, not just Hamnet, but I Am I Am I Am and… Continue reading Review: The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O’Farrell

Review: Instructions for the Working Day by Joanna Campbell

What an interesting book this is. It has a great premise but delivers more, mainly through incredibly evocative writing of place and characters. Instructions is the story of Neil, whose father has died and has left him a village in the former East Germany, built on marshes and left to deteriorate badly. Neil’s relationship with… Continue reading Review: Instructions for the Working Day by Joanna Campbell

Review: The Hollow Sea by Annie Kirby

What a beautiful looking book this is. Here is the cover. Isn’t it gorgeous? Luckily, the inside is an intriguing debut that lives up to the cover loveliness. The Hollow Sea is a story about motherhood but not as you expect. Rather it covers non-motherhood, the yearning to have a child that is never fulfilled,… Continue reading Review: The Hollow Sea by Annie Kirby

Review: Small Miracles by Anne Booth

There are usually two types of stories about nuns: cheerful tales of wimpled women, slightly clueless and out of touch, trying to deal with the modern world; or harsh Magdalene laundry types, burying babies in the back garden and berating terrified teenage mothers. Small Miracles is the former of these. And thank goodness for that.… Continue reading Review: Small Miracles by Anne Booth

Review: The House of Fortune by Jessie Burton

I’m always glad when I read a book that has had a lot of hype and it’s actually worth all the bother. There’s such a lot of hype out there. Anyway, The Miniaturist was such a book – an atmospheric tale of secrets that seeped through the house and family like damp from the Amsterdam… Continue reading Review: The House of Fortune by Jessie Burton

Review: The Key to My Heart by Lia Louis

My Twitter pal Lia Louis has a new book out and it’s another deftly written rom com. The Key to My Heart opens with Natalie, a young widow, being forced to chat up a bloke in a bar by her friends who all consider her ready to move on from her heartbreak and find a… Continue reading Review: The Key to My Heart by Lia Louis

Review: His Other Woman by Sarah Edghill

Lucy is at the supermarket buying dinner when she gets a mysterious text from her husband Tom. “I need to go away. Please don’t try to get in touch. I can’t explain right now.” Lucy, predictably, dumps the shopping, rushes home to find Tom is not there (and he didn’t even clear the table before… Continue reading Review: His Other Woman by Sarah Edghill