So, it’s been a while since I’ve written a post on what I’ve been reading ( well, since I’ve written anything at all actually!) but I’m back to share some of the books I’ve loved and some that have not quite hit the mark over the last few months. I’ll share the books over a few posts as there is a lot to mention.
First up is a book written by a friend of mine, the very lovely Andrea Mara aka Office Mum.
The Other Side of the Wall
I’ll admit that I was apprehensive about reading this book, not because I doubted the talent of the writer, I’ve been a huge fan of her writing for a long time, but because I worried about what I would say if I didn’t like the book. It is a domestic noir book, which is not my normal choice of read, but hand on heart, my fears were unfounded. Speaking of my heart though…it spent most of its time in my mouth while I was reading this.
The book describe the creepy goings-on of Sylvia’s new neighbours. Through a fog of sleep deprivation Sylvia tries to make sense of the sinister nocturnal activities. Andrea’s descriptions of the everyday exchanges of a sleep deprived couple draws you straight into their world and gives an instant connection. The twists and turns are both clever and unforced.
The book is a fantastic page turner and is the kind of book that will make you stay up far later than you should just to see what happens next. Be warned though, you *might* find yourself checking and rechecking that all door are locked before bedtime!
I am only delighted to recommend this book and rumour has it that Book 2 is in the bag and I’m sure will be another excellent read.
Next Up is
Hot Milk By Deborah Levy
This book was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize, and I can see why. It is a beautifully written book that examines the sense of duty and identity of a mother and daughter, who have travelled to a small Spanish village seeking a cure for a mystery paralysis.
The colour, the heat and the pain in this novel are vividly portrayed. The often suffocating relationship between mother and daughter is wonderfully drawn and yet it is a book that I did not enjoy and could not recommend.
Is it enough for a book to be wonderfully written, or does the story need to pull you in, to make you want to turn the page and see what fate awaits the characters, to see where the story will bring you next.
For me both these elements need to be present and it is in the latter that I found this book wanting.
A Line Made By Walking by Sara Baume
I adored this writers first book, Spill Simmer Falter Wither and was delighted to hear she had a second novel out. The narrator of this is again a loner and there is an ever-present feeling that this is a novel without hope. It’s bleakness,it’s portrayal of depression, coupled with the central characters obsession with photographing and documenting dead animals may not be the kind of sound bites that would make you want to race out and buy it, and yet the feelings of tenderness that Frankie elicits will keep you reading right to the end.
This is not a sun lounger read and wouldn’t not be everyone’s cup of tea but it is definitely a book that I would be happy to recommend
So that’s one hit, one miss and one that would most likely divide opinion …lots more posts to come, so stay tuned as there are some more great books to come.