Monday, 25 May 2009

Rest of May...

English as a Second Language by Megan Crane
As you may have realised, I rarely (as in never) give up on a book once I've started it. i keep going, hoping for the best and trying to find a redeeming feature. However, this is one I truly struggled with...I disliked the main character of Alex, she was totally self-absorbed and although she finally realises that there was nothing endearing or sympathetic about her in the meantime. The supporting cast were poorly drawn and uninteresting, even the love interest left me cold. I'm aware York Uni isn't the most inspiring campus in the world, but the book didn't even manage to sell York itself as a place of any value! Okay, I've been a student, yes i drank copious amounts, but the amount of time spent in the pub was just lazy.
Maybe I'm coming from the wrong angle and it's definately aimed at the US market, but sadly a waste of a few hours reading.

The Return by Victoria Hislop
I soooo wanted to read this and waited impatiently for it to come out in paperback. It's good, but doesn't live up to The Island. (Which is one of my all time favs!) Interesting but not enough "feeling" in the middle section about the the Civil parts it was a bit text book description rather than novelisation. Loved the flamenco bits. Still good, but not what I hoped for.

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Books in May...

Well I've read loads, but not managed to keep up with the blog, so here's a go!

Sex, Lies and Fairytales by Kate Thompson
More Irish chick-lit...and certainly one of the better ones. Enjoyable small town romp with likeable characters and far better than the disappointing "Hard to Choos" lead me to believe. Will definately look at others by the same author.

The Last of the Great Romantics by Claudia Carroll
Irish chick-lit! Not her best (imho) but does what it says on the and frothy, with bizarre characters and unlikely events...pleasant escapism!

The truth about Melody Browne by Lisa Jewell
I was desparate to get to the end of this to find out about Melody's forgotten life and it was enjoyable, but the style made it repetitive...the reader was given information and then Melody "remembered" it for herself. Not a particularly "joyful" read, but hope and love triumph in the end.

An Offer You Can't Refuse by Jill Mansell
Superior chick know what you're getting with Jill Mansell and they are always well written, interesting and fairly "real" characters and a happy ending. Loved it - great for a mooching Sunday.

Trust me I'm a Junior Doctor
Expected disasters and slip ups by newly qualified doctors being let loose for the first time. Usual "funnies" but realistic and humane too.

Late Season by Christobel Kent
A slow burner - took a while to get into it and none of the English characters are particularly likeable, however, it grew on me and although the twist was visible at an early stage it was rather well done.

The Carousel by Rosamunde Pilcher
Haven't read Pilcher for years...remember sitting up late ploughing through September, which i loved. This is a fairly short, but compelling story of love in Cornwall (surprise!) well written and beautiful characterisaion.

Going Home by Harriet Evans
Have mixed feelings about this "Hopeless Romantic" but disliked "Love of her Life", so didn't really know what to expect. It falls in the middle - enjoyable, easy read, bit irritating at times as I just wanted her to get over herself and all the fuss about losing the house, but okay.

Keeping Mum by Kate Lawson
Disappointing. Had potential...didn't happen.

Wedding Tiers by Trisha Ashley
Again, another author I love. Well written romance with a few slight reference to characters and events in A Winter's tale. Village life, gentle, non-threatening main character and happy ending...lovely weekend read.

Do you want to know a secret? by Claudia Carroll
I do enjoy this author...romp through three friends finding their way through "The Secret" type self help book. Great fun, completely silly...loved it!

Saturday, 2 May 2009

Finishing off the April list...

Agatha Raisin and the Perfect Paragon by MC Beaton
Last Aggie book in the house (although there's a couple more still to go!) so having a break for a while. More of the same and just what I'd now expect!

Persuading Annie by Melissa Nathan
Modern take on Persuasion, which I love. Nathan's books are always fun, but some do the update better than others...this was pretty good, but not enough regret/longing about the past from either of the main characters. Entertaining enough, but not her absolute best.

Can't wait to get to Heaven by Fannie Flagg
Not my choice - mum bought it for her hols and wanted me to read it first. Not at all what I expected and where it could have been preachy and saccharine, I found it to be fun and uplifting. makes the point that everyone is here for a reason and we need to just get on with it!

Agatha Raisin and the Deadly dance by MC Beaton
More of the same - Agie angst...need I say more?!

Hard to Choos by Pixie Pirrelli
Urgh...bought this due to Amazon recommendation and wish I hadn't bothered. It's "written" by an author who appears in a Kate Thompson book and is supposed to a sparkly chick-lit. It's cliched, weak and obsessed with coco de mer underwear. Maybe I'm missing something and I've got the real book this stems from on order, so maybe I've done it the wrong way round, but it tries too hard to be sexy and modern and falls flat.