May Books

Jun. 1st, 2017 07:36 pm
pandop: (Default)
 23: A perfect red: empire, espionage and the quest for the colour of desire Amy Butler Greenfield 

A fascinating subject matter, but very badly let down by cost-cutting in the paperback edition - the photograph section was printed in black and white, and on normal paper, not glossy, which rendered most of the pictures as blurry blobs. What made it worse is the use of colour in the pictures is referred to in the text - and of course you can't get any of that benefit. This is a real shame, as cochineal has had quite an impact on world history. 

24: The book of lost things John Connolly 

This was May's read for the book group - and a re-read for me (rare with book club books). If anything I loved it more on this second reading. But then again, dark mashed up fairy stories are very much my thing, especially with the touches of humour. I also love the comprehensive end matter in this edition. It wasn't universally liked though, which did lead to a good discussion (although I am more convinced than ever that when it comes to fantasy, my book group are a bunch of philistines)

25: The Canterbury Tales by Night Omnibus Paul Doherty 

Three books in one (which explains the low numbers this month) - one of which I had read before, but so long ago I couldn't actually remember that much about it. I did enjoy all three mysteries, and I very much like the connections he is drawing between the pilgrims. My main complaint is that, because these are quite old, there are some historical myths in there that jar a little. 

July Books

Aug. 3rd, 2014 05:59 pm
pandop: (Kali)
31: Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen

This was a re-read prompted by the Literaure of the Country House MOOC I was studying. It did give me a slightly different perspective  - as did knowing more about the Georgian era than I used to. It is still one of my favourite Jane Austen novels though,

32: The Mortal Institruments: City of Glass Cassandra Clare

Really good, very well written - I love that the heroine is always active, even if not wisely. Great series.

33: Thug: the true story of india's murderous cult Mike Dash

This was really interesting - particularly about the investigation into Thugee, which was very impressive considering this was still early in the nineteenth century, and the East India company didn't really have the resources, the authority, or the manpower. it can definitely be counted as one of the earliest achievements of the British in Indiia, having sad that, once they got going, they also took the investigation too far, again a sad pattern of the British in India. Very readable book.

34: The curious incident of the dog in the night-time Mark Haddon

This is my second choice for the book group - mostly to get me to read it, as it has been on the 'to read' pile for years. I am glad I finally read it, as it is great. Brilliant story, and the writing is excellent, it really puts you inside Christopher's head.

35: Solomon's Tale Shelia Jeffries

Quite sad and sweet. Not sure about the writing style  - bit too much of the angels for my liking. Still on the whole I did like it, and I was glad Mum warned me it would make me cry.

36: 44 Scotland Street Alexander McCall Smith

I loved the serialised aspect of this, and I also loved the characters - I definitely want to read more about them

May Books

Jun. 2nd, 2014 10:08 pm
pandop: (Kali)
Bumper crop this month, because a lot of them were on the short side. Doubt I will have time to read so much next month.
Read more... )

April Books

May. 5th, 2014 10:38 am
pandop: (Kali)
13: The Ides of April Lindsay Davis (Audiobook)

A very appropriate book to start the month with. Slightly different in style from her Falco books, but I liked the chatty style she gives to Flavia Albia. I worked out both the twists, but I wasn't disappointed, as I wanted things to be that way. Must read more of the next generation of Falco.

14: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones Cassandra Clare

I went to see the film of this last year with my friend Lynn, who has read the books already and said 'you'll like this'. She was right, I did. Now I have got round to reading the books, I liked them even more. I am going to have to pace myself though, or I will run out.

15: A Darker Domain Val McDermid

I don't read so much morden crime, but this was recommended to me by Mum, and I really liked it. Although I found the ending quite annoying in a way, the rest of the book was fantastic, lots of really good twists and characters.

16: Campbell's Creek Michael J. Robinson.

I was leant this by a colleague at work - and now we are both waiting for the follow up. Set in the early days of Scottish settlement in New Zealand, particularly around their gold rush. Very well written with excellent characters.

17: Quarrantine Jim Crace

This was the choice for the May meeting of the book club. I am not sure how I felt about this, as I didn't enjoy reading it, but found it very satisfying by the end. It provoked a lot of very good discussion at the meeting though, and was an unwittingly appropriate choice to be read over Lent and Easter.
pandop: (Kali)
1: The Moonstone Wilkie Collins

My choice for the book group, and I am pleased to say everyone seemed to like it. It was a re-read for me, and I found it odder to re-read knowing the culprit than I do some mysteries. It struck me again how very much of its time it is in terms of language and attitudes - although equally surprising that there was no overtone of the Indian characters being in need of conversion to Chrsitianity.

2: The Luminous Life of Lily Aphrodite Beatrice Collin

Odd, but enjoyable. It was interesting to find out at the end that it had been based on real stories. I think it gave a good feeling of what Germany was like before, during and after the First World War  - certainly the latter part had a feeling of Cabaret about it. Lily was on the whole likeable, unlike most of the rest of the characters.

3: Sick Notes Tony Copperfield

Very funny tales from a GP's surgery. Does make you feel guilty for having gone to the doctors, ever, though - although most of his vitriol is reserved for NHS bureaucracy!
pandop: (Kali)
I realised so late in November that I hadn't done October's books, I decided to run them together.

October

29: A Feast for Crows George R.R. Martin
Really good, I liked the changes in some of the characters, but not all of them.

30: A Dying Light in Cordubua Lindsey Davis (Kindle)
What else would I re-read on the holiday where I finally get to go to Cordoba? Perfect holiday reading, as it has always been on of my favourite Falcos anyway. There are still a lot of olive trees in Andalusia too - they make about half the olive oil in the world!

31: Blood , Sweat and Tea Tom Reynolds (Kindle)
I had forgotten how much I had enjoyed reading this blog, and what an excellent writer Tom Reynolds is.

33: The Lost Prophecies The Medieval Murderers
I bought this on Skirlington Market, thinking I hadn't read it before, but I recognised some of the stories, and then I remembered really disliking the futuristic story at the end (I want my murders medieval!). I liked the other stories very much though.

33: As They Slept Andy Leeks (Kindle)
Written on his daily commute. It would have been better if he had written a blog - although I have read better blogs (see above). Not a keeper. Wish I hadn't bought part 2.

November

34: The Painted Lady Edward Marston
Good mystery, I like this series, as I love the friendship between the main characters, one that endures despite their differences.

35: King Arthur's Bones The Medieval Murderers
Even though there is a modern epilogue to this one too, it isn't nearly so annoying as the one above. Good range of stories in this one, and I really did like the ending in the 'modern' bit.

36: The Female Man Joanna Russ
This was the first book we have read for the new book club at work. In it's favour I can say it gave us a lot to talk about. But I really did not enjoy this. Far too disjointed, and I felt the plot and characterization suffered in favour of making important points. What was really annoying was there were some bits that were really good, and then they stop in favour of important points.

My choice next month, I hope they like it a bit better...

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