Tag Archives: reading

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 Review: Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

dark places

(From Goodreads)Libby Day was just seven years old when her evidence put her fifteen-year-old brother behind bars.
Since then, she has been drifting. But when she is contacted by a group who are convinced of Ben’s innocence, Libby starts to ask questions she never dared to before. Was the voice she heard her borther’s? Ben was a misfit in their small town, but was he capable of murder? Are there secrets to uncover at the family farm or is Libby deluding herself because she wants her brother back?
She begins to realise that everyone in her family had something to hide that day… especially Ben. Now, twenty-four years later, the truth is going to be even harder to find.
Who did massacre the Day family?

Just as interesting and dark as the previous stories of Flynn’s her second novel takes matters of a crime in the past and present point of view. It’s a well-paced page-turner, beautifully wrought, that would leave you shocked, disturbed and intrigued at once. Flynn is excellent at creating unpleasant characters and disturbing situations, and Dark Places is full of them. If you plan to read at night, make sure you have the light on.

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Book Review: The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon (Book 2, The Bone Season)

mime order

(From Goodreads) Paige Mahoney has escaped the brutal prison camp of Sheol I, but her problems have only just begun: many of the survivors are missing and she is the most wanted person in London…
As Scion turns its all-seeing eye on the dreamwalker, the mime-lords and mime-queens of the city’s gangs are invited to a rare meeting of the Unnatural Assembly. Jaxon Hall and his Seven Seals prepare to take centre stage, but there are bitter fault lines running through the clairvoyant community and dark secrets around every corner. Then the Rephaim begin crawling out from the shadows. But where is Warden? Paige must keep moving, from Seven Dials to Grub Street to the secret catacombs of Camden, until the fate of the underworld can be decided.

Shannon jumps into the story with action, interest and questions of how Paige is going to survive that keeps the readers hooked. Paige’s new life is in Scion, as the secrets and darkness that surrounds her are revealed as Shannon’s characters shift, backstab and fall in ways that are as fascinating as the twists and turns of the plot.
The Mime Order is the second book in a new fantasy series.

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Book Review: Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

sharp objects

(From Goodreads) WICKED above her hipbone, GIRL across her heart. Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. NASTY on her kneecap, BABYDOLL on her leg. Since she left town eight years ago, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed again in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille is haunted by the childhood tragedy she has spent her whole life trying to cut from her memory. HARMFUL on her wrist, WHORE on her ankle. As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.
With its taut, crafted writing, Sharp Objects is addictive, haunting, and unforgettable

Gillian Flynn has recently became a favourite author of mine, ever since I read her amazing Gone Girl. And so I’ve gone back to her first ever published book, and I am pleased to say it was a brilliant piece of work, dark, twisted and disturbing.
The book is engaging, as we follow Camille, through her move back home to her town, where she is to get the inside scoop on the murders of two preteen girls – both strangled and had their teeth removed. We follow Camille on her quest to obtain as much information as possible about the crimes – and we also learn much more than we bargained for. The town is filled with dark secrets and the least of all is the twisted dynamic of Camille’s own family.
If you like characters that unreliable, flawed and with dark and disturbing qualities then this is a book for you.

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Book Review: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

jh

(From Goodreads) Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.
And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

I loved the idea that the whole story is based on the surrounding circumstances of a train ride, where Rachel happens to see something that she shouldn’t have. This whole idea is terrifyingly good; because everyone has in one time of their life caught a train and looked outside the window. As Rachel catches the train every day from Ashbury to London and returns in the afternoon, we learn that she has a disconcerting obsession with a couple “Jason and Jess”, whose house she passes on her train commute. And as she gazes out of the window she witnesses something that she shouldn’t have. These blend of every normal activity, catching the train and then with the mysterious element is one thing that I like about the book. It’s a good premise for a thriller. Who hasn’t gazed from a train window and imagined the lives of others?

Your sympathies and suspicions shift as the story develops. Rachel’s alcoholism is a plot device and not an illness, as it keeps the story going forward and thickening with drama, because you know she knows something but she can’t recall it because she has no memory of that night when she had been drinking. You are pulled into the story, as Rachel tries to put her fractured pieces of her mind back together and the conclusion is a twist that should leave you waiting for Hawkins next novel, because it was such a great ending.
The book explores power, betrayal, relationships, while ratcheting tension.
Overall it was a great book.

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Book Review: Before I Go To Sleep by S. J. Watson

before i go to sleep

(From Goodreads) As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I’m still a child, thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me…Memories define us. So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep? Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love–all forgotten overnight. And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story.
Welcome to Christine’s life.

THE MERMORY LOSS: It is quite a scary thing to imagine about waking up every morning and not remembering who you are. It is disturbing at some level, which just makes you so engrossed in the story of Christine’s life, a life that as a reader, you find difficult to actually consider how terrifying it would be to lose everything that makes you who you are, your memories that have been made, created your path for your life are all now lost. And in this book this is just all thrown up in wind, with Christine suffering through day in day out with realising that she is someone else, but is that someone real or just a lie.
HUSBAND AND WIFE RELATIONSHIP: At the core of the story is the relationship between Christine and her husband, Ben and how they both deal with her amnesia. This dramatic background in a normal suburban town is a view of this struggling family with secrets, deceit and half-truths as Christine writes in her dairy telling her thoughts and feelings about Ben. Can she trust him? Does she love him? You feel connected to Christine as you read her dairy that she keeps and struggle with her to learn what memories are true and if Ben is telling her the whole truth.
THE ENDING: The book wraps the story quickly in the end, a bit fast, but you are given the reveal of the main plot twist that you might’ve seen coming or not.

Overall, it was an interesting read and favourably enjoyable.

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Ideas where do they come from?

The Inspiration has hit.
We’ve all read those marvellous stories that keep us tightly gripped to the story right until the end, but how does the author come up with these wonderful ideas? What makes them think of these situations and how did they discover these creative thoughts. The following is of some famous authors, with their works and how they came up with the ideas and where they were when inspiration hit them.

J.R.R. Tolkien was grading college exam papers, and when he came across a blank sheet, he wrote down the first thing that randomly popped into his mind: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” He had no idea what a hobbit was or why it lived underground, and so he set out to solve the mystery. Thus began the creation of The Hobbit.

Leo Tolstoy was said to have had a vision of an elbow and the image expanded into a melancholy woman in a ball gown, one night after dinner. The woman was so intriguing and mysterious to him that he wrote her story. Thus began the creation of Anna Karenina.

In June of 2003, Stephenie Meyer woke up from an intense dream in which two young lovers were lying together in a meadow, discussing why their love could never work. And one of them, the boy, was a vampire. Thus began the creation of Twilight.

In the case of Misery a novel by Stephen King, King describes falling asleep on an airplane and having a dream about a fan kidnapping her favourite author and holding him hostage. When he awoke, King was so anxious to capture the story of his dream that he sat at the airport and frantically wrote the first 40-50 pages of the novel.

In 1816, Mary Shelley was just eighteen years old when she spent the summer with her lover (and future husband) Percy Shelley, at Lord Byron’s estate in Switzerland. One night, as they sat around the fire, the conversation turned to the subject of reanimating human bodies using electrical currents. Shelley went to bed that night with images of corpses coming back to life, and thus grew the creation of Frankenstein’s monster.

Suzanne Collins had said this on her idea for the Hunger Games series “One night, I was lying in bed and I was very tired, and I was just sort of channel surfing on television. And, I was going through, flipping through images of reality television where there were these young people competing for a million dollars or a bachelor or whatever. And then I was flipping and I was seeing footage from the Iraq War. And these two things began to sort of fuse together in a very unsettling way, and that is when I, really, I think was the moment where I really got the idea for Katniss’s story.”

J.K. Rowling had said that the creation for Harry Potter came to her one day when she was travelling on her own on a crowded train, and the idea of a boy who was a wizard simply fell into her head.

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