Tag Archives: fiction

A collection of Book Reviews

I’ve been silent for a while on the blog, and that is because I’ve been busy at university. But thankfully, now I am on my semester break and am looking forward to relaxing and reading those books I don’t have to read for my course.
However, the books I read this semester for class were ones that wouldn’t have been on my top of the reading list, but I thought I would get back into wrtiing on the blog by firstly writing the book reviews for the six books I read this semester.

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner: (From back book cover, the blurb): Depicting the gradual disintegration of the Compson family through four fractured narratives. The novel explores intense, passionate family relationships where there is no love, only self-centredness. The heart of the novel is about lovelessness.
If you like classics then you have most likely heard of this novel. The style of the novel is hard to read with the objective characters and distortion of chronologic order. However on the bases of the story it is a good read once you get past its difficulties, and it is no wonder it is a classic in American literature.

The Portrait of an Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce: (From back book cover, the blurb): Against the backdrop of the nineteenth-century Dublin, a boy becomes a man; his mind testing its powers, obsessions taking hold and loosening again, the bonds of family, tradition, nation and religion transforming from supports into shackles; until the young man devotes himself to the celebration of beauty and reaches for independence and the life of an artist.
The story is a journey of a boy becoming a man in the world, trying to find his place. Splendidly written and particular note of the written style with its the lack of quotation marks.

The Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad: (From Goodreads): Dark allegory describes the narrator’s journey up the Congo River and his meeting with, and fascination by, Mr. Kurtz, a mysterious personage who dominates the unruly inhabitants of the region. Masterly blend of adventure, character development, psychological penetration. Considered by many Conrad’s finest, most enigmatic story.
An intense plot and a telling frame story narrative that is easy to read that questions the underlying darkness of human nature. A classic read for anyone who enjoys a story surrounding the psychology of human nature and issues of colonisation.

The Crying Lot of 49 by Thomas Pynchon: (From back book cover, the blurb)Oedipa Mass discovers that she has been made executrix of a former lover’s estate. The performance of her duties sets her on a strange trail of detection in which bizarre characters crowd in to help or confuse her. But gradually death, drugs, madness and marriage combine to leave Oedipa in isolation on the threshold of revelation.

The Waves by Virginia Woolf: Woolf writing in a stream of self-consciousness as the narrative traces the lives and interactions of seven friends in an exploratory and sensuous narrative. Anyone could like this novel, as it is not difficult to read or follow the plot. It is written in an engaging experiencing and I really have nothing to dislike about this novel.

Speedboat by Renata Adler: The novel follows the young American journalist, Jen Fain, in the coming age of New York 1970s. In sporadic episodes the narrator reveals bleak observations, in an unconventional writing style, interjecting thoughts and opinions on a range of topics. The only thing that places a damper on reading this novel is there is no set chronology of when the events happen. But, otherwise I found it a great and enjoyable read.

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Hades by Candice Fox: A Book Review

(From Goodreads) Twenty years ago, two children were kidnapped and left for dead.
Raised by a master criminal, they grew up to become cops. Very unusual cops . . .
Homicide detective Frank Bennett has an intriguing new partner. Dark, beautiful, coldly efficient, Eden Archer is one of the most enigmatic colleagues Frank has ever worked with—that includes her brother Eric, who’s also on the Sydney Metro police force. All of them are tested to the core when a local man discovers a graveyard of large steel toolboxes lying at the bottom of the harbor. Each box contains a grisly trove of human body parts.
For Frank, the madman’s clues are a tantalizing puzzle. For Eden and Eric, the case holds chilling links to a scarred childhood—and a murderous mentor named Hades. But the true evil goes beyond the bloody handiwork of a serial killer

A riveting and twisted crime novel that keeps you gripped to the end. I liked reading this story, maybe because it is set in Australia. The characters were bizarre and interesting at the same time. The backstory of Eden and Eric, takes on a whole new level in the crime fiction world, that helps this debut book stand out from other crime novels.

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Book Review: Sister by Rosamund Lupton

sister

(From Goodreads) Nothing can break the bond between sisters …When Beatrice gets a frantic call in the middle of Sunday lunch to say that her younger sister, Tess, is missing, she boards the first flight home to London. But as she learns about the circumstances surrounding her sister’s disappearance, she is stunned to discover how little she actually knows of her sister’s life – and unprepared for the terrifying truths she must now face. The police, Beatrice’s fiancé and even their mother accept they have lost Tess but Beatrice refuses to give up on her. So she embarks on a dangerous journey to discover the truth, no matter the cost.

A gripping plot, and compelling well-written story takes place in London, when Beatrice receives phone call that her younger sister has gone missing.
The story touches on many elements of medicine and crime – but the most interesting is the description of the two sister’s bond that is clearly seen throughout the story. It is heart wrenchingly sad at some moments, and Lupton pulls at the emotion and psychological strings of the reader. One of the higlights of the book is, Beatrice is writing a letter to her sister, and the use of second-person personal pronoun, ‘you’, links the reader to the story, as if we take the place of the sister, – making it as if you are part of the story.

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Book 5: The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James

Book 5: The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James

The Lost Memoirs of Jane Austen by Syrie James

A wonderful look into the world’s most beloved author’s life, this novel was compelling and such a delight to read. James captures the voice of Austen and gives us a stunning and provocative look into Austen’s life in this story of what was in the greatest romance author’s own heart.

Many rumours abound about a mysterious gentleman said to be the love of Jane’s life – finally, the truth may have been found…
What if, hidden in an old attic chest, Jane Austen’s memoirs were discovered after hundreds of years? What if those pages revealed the untold story of a life- changing love affair? That’s the premise behind this spellbinding novel, which delves into the secrets of Jane Austen’s life, giving us untold insights into her mind and heart. Jane Austen has given up her writing when, on a fateful trip to Lyme, she meets the well-read and charming Mr. Ashford, a man who is her equal in intellect and temperament. Inspired by the people and places around her encouraged by his faith in her, Jane begins revising Sense and Sensibility, a book she began years earlier, hoping to be published at last. Deft and witty, written in a style that echoes Austen’s own, this unforgettable novel offers a delightfully possible scenario for the inspiration behind this beloved author’s romantic tales. It’s a remarkable book, irresistible to anyone who loves Jane Austen –and to any-one who loves a great story. (From back cover)

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