The Strange Affair of Spring Heeled Jack, Mark Hodder

Some books are born great. Some books achieve greatness. Some books have greatness thrust upon them. This book is not one of them. It’s not great. It’s not beautifully written. It’s not literary. But it is immensely fun! Mark Hodder propels us into Victorian London: the search for the source of the Nile, Stanley, Livingstone,…

Maggot Moon, Sally Gardner

When we got the books for the Carnegie Shadowing in school, there was a lot of excitement that this was a book about a dyslexic, in the voice of a dyslexic, written by a dyslexic. Obviously, in an educational environment, it was … enticing. And, whilst that is all true, that is only minor part…

Mortal Coil, Derek Landy

I have been enjoying this series. They were nothing exciting, nothing terribly original. But they were fun. They were light hearted. They were fast-paced and witty. But niggles and worries are starting to mar my enjoyment of them now. The worse elements are coming to the fore and the books are becoming increasingly dark, violent…

A Greyhound Of A Girl, Roddy Doyle

Roddy Doyle is a great writer. He wrote The Commitments which is a fabulous book and one of my favourite films of all time! He wrote Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha which is a fantastic evocation of a ten year old boy’s childhood. Roddy Doyle does voices extremely well. He creates the voices of children…

In Darkness, Nick Lake

In Darkness is Nick Lake’s debut novel and an extraordinarily powerful one at that. Set in the aftermath of the 2010 Haiti Earthquake, the novel is literally set in darkness: our narrator, Shorty, is entombed in the remains of a collapsed hospital as rescuers lose hope of finding any survivors. In the darkness and rubble,…