pandop: (Kali)
Last three finishes of the year.

37: The String of Pearls (The Original Tale of Sweeny Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street) Thomas Preskett Prest (Kindle)

Downloaded this when I went to see Sweeny Todd at the Playhouse in October, and got round to reading it in November/December. Really good. Not a conventional whodunnit, as we all know whodunnit, more of a case of 'how will they catch him'. Some good twists at the end too that you didn't suspect.

38: A Street Cat Named Bob James Bowen

A charming and lovely book. Everyone should have a cat like Bob in their life ;)

39: The Dawn of the Color Photograph: Albert Khan's Archives of the Planet David Okuefuna

I borrowed this from work a while ago and finally got round to reading it while I was off sick in December. Mostly because it is, as the title implies, more picture based - although what there was to read was fascinating. Particularly about how many places are less ethnically mixed, and more repressive to women, than they were before the First World War. Depressing, reallly. Although the photographs are wonderful to look at.

39 books isn't a bad total for the year, as there have been a real mix of lengths in there, and also of subject, some have been quite heavy going too. No idea if I will do better or not next year. Certainly being in a book group will mean reading some books I would never have thought of - and who knows where that will lead me.
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...
pandop: (Kali)
26: Peyton Place Grace Metalious

Absolutely brilliant - wonderful characterisation and plot. Interesting to go back and read the notes and find out what had to be changed.

27: The Law of Angels Cassandra Clark

Picked these up as the central character comes from a place near me (that I had to look up how to pronounce) that most people haven't heard of. Loved the book. Liked the local setting, liked the characters.

28: The Parliament of Spies Cassandra Clark

I liked the first one I read so much I went straight on to another one. Now looking out for the rest of the series. This one is not so local in the setting, as they go down to London.
pandop: (Kali)
That it is September today reminded me that I still haven't made all the LJ posts I was planning. So I will start by running the July and August books together.

19: The Lady of the Rivers Phillippa Gregory

I have to agree, there is not enough history written/known about Jacquetta. Although I have bought Phillippa Gregory's non-fiction book on the women of the cousins' war, so I can at least learn something. I really enjoyed this novel though - particularly the wider geographic and historical span.

20: Sex with Kings: 500 Years of adultery, power, rivalry, and revenge Eleanor Herman [Kindle]

Fascinating. The range of behaviour on display from the Kings and their women. Nice to read a bit about some of the less famous women - and that they weren't all grasping, as history so often suggests.

21: Heroes Joe Abercrombie

I am loving this 'series', despite the complete lack of anyone likeable in them. This was a very good depiction of war (I think) and an excellent depiction of people.

22: Penguins Stopped Play: Eleven village cricketers take on the world Harry Thompson

So funny. I laughed until I cried, then I cried. Not one to read in public on the bus - it get's you some very odd looks.

23: Mr. Rosenblum's List: or, Friendly guidance for the aspiring Englishman Natasha Solomons

Wasn't sure about this to start, but Mr. Rosenbum, and the book, grew on me. Lovely gentle tale.

24: The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark Jill Tomlinson

Re-read this in half an hour one morning, after finding it at home. Still as charming as ever.

25: The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fiztgerald

It occured to me I had never read this, and a friend was giving it away. Now I know why. 

June Books

Jul. 18th, 2013 10:38 pm
pandop: (Kali)
I said I was going to do few updates, and then things got away from me. So here is the belated June books post.

16: A Song of Fire & Ice: A storm of swords : Steel and Snow George R.R. Martin

Brilliant. Love the twists. Couldn't wait to get onto part 2!

17: A Song of Fire & Ice : A storm of swords : Blood & Gold George R.R. Martin

Yet more twists. So good though.

18: In the Company of the Courtesa Sarah Dunant

Really enjoyed the twists in this story, and some of the more unexpected turns at the end. Bucino is an engaging narrator, and the setting is wonderful. 

May Books

Jun. 7th, 2013 09:18 pm
pandop: (Kali)
13: A Clash of Kings George R. R. Martin

Brilliant. Love the twists. Such a great series.

14: The Aviary Gate Katie Hickman

I loved the mix of past and present in this, without the usual predictable plot. Lots of twists and intrigue.

15: Case Histories Kate Atkinson

Really enjoyed this, and recognised some of the stories from the series. Having Jason Isaacs in your head while you read this is no bad thing though. Good mysteries, and I like the way some of them are told, with actual case histories, then the present, and then sort of open conclusions.

April Books

May. 7th, 2013 10:34 pm
pandop: (Kali)
11: Opening Pandora's Box Ferdie Addis (kindle)

A nice bit of light relief, but with some information that was new to me. It really is amazing how many classical allusions there are in everyday language.

Also, I feel very sorry for the goddesses that got lumbered with mildew and bad smells.

12: Best Served Cold Joe Abercrombie (print)

Absolutely brilliant, just like the First Law trilogy. Adored the twisty, turny plot and the expansion on some of the characters. Think I am going to end up buying the next one before too long.
pandop: (Kali)
Just 3 this month

4: The Etymologicon: A Circular Stroll through the Hidden Connections of the English Language Mark Forsyth (Kindle)

Fascinating and funny - but needs more references. Good bus reading.

5: The Gallows Curse Karen Maitland (Print)

I think this is the reason I only read 3 books this month, I didn't enjoy this as much as I had enjoyed The Owl Killers , and I found it dragged. Very few of the characters grabbed me

6: Catching Fire Suzanne Collins

I absolutely flew through this - so good. Straight onto the sequel. Loving the developments.
pandop: (Kali)
All on my Kindle this month. 

1 English Fairy Tale

This was lovely to read on the bus as none of the stories were very long. Some I was familar with, but some were new. Very enjoyable (and free)

2 The Inquiry Agen William King

Absolutely brilliant, can't recommend this enough. Great story and characters. Loved the main character and really want to read more. Victorian Private Detective, and very dark. 

3 Mansfield Par Jane Austen

I do quite like this Austen  - good range of characters, even if Fanny is a bit too perfect. Mrs Norris is wonderfully loathsome though ;)

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