Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’d Want With Me While Stranded On a Deserted Island

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Previous Top Ten Tuesday Topics June 1: Freebie: The Last Ten Books… Continue reading Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’d Want With Me While Stranded On a Deserted Island

Book Review: A Line to Kill, Anthony Horowitz

Many thanks to Anthony Horowitz and Penguin Books for the chance to read this ARC, courtesy of NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. I've really enjoyed Horowitz' crime capers in the past as he has played with the form: the Susan Ryeland series (Magpie Murders and Moonflower Murders) which interpose Atticus Pund's fiction-within-a-fiction detective… Continue reading Book Review: A Line to Kill, Anthony Horowitz

Book Review: Piranesi, Susanna Clarke

Oh my goodness! This was just sublime! It took a few chapters to get into and was not what I had expected at all from the author of Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell but once you were in, this was a novel that did not let go and which haunts the reader long after reading… Continue reading Book Review: Piranesi, Susanna Clarke

Mini Book Review: Mexican Gothic, Silvia Moreno-Garcia

When glamorous socialite Noemí Taboada receives a frantic letter from her newlywed cousin begging to be rescued from a mysterious doom, it's clear something is desperately amiss. Catalina has always had a flair for the dramatic, but her claims that her husband, Virgil Doyle, is poisoning her and her visions of restless ghosts seem remarkable,… Continue reading Mini Book Review: Mexican Gothic, Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Book Review: The Golden Rule, Amanda Craig

There are people who read out of necessity, and people who read out of love. Hannah was one of the latter, and when she found a book she liked she sank into it as if into another world. Voices, music, pneumatic drills all became inaudible; she was the kind of child who would go off… Continue reading Book Review: The Golden Rule, Amanda Craig

Book Review: This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

I love you. I love you. I love you. I'll write it in waves. In skies. In my heart. You'll never see, but you will know. I'll be all the poets, I'll kill them all and take each one's place in turn, and every time love's written in all the strands it will be to… Continue reading Book Review: This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Book Review: The Dinner Guest, B. P. Walter

My husband Matthew died on an unseasonably chilly August day at dinner time. We had been together for just over ten years, married for five, and yes, we did love each other. But love changes over time, and in those final moments when I knew he was dying, well, I must confess that through the… Continue reading Book Review: The Dinner Guest, B. P. Walter

Book Review: Snow, John Banville

“How strange a thing it was to be here, animate and conscious, on this ball of mud and brine as it whirled through the illimitable depths of space.” John Banville has been writing crime novels under the pen name of Benjamin Black for some years - since Christine Falls in 2007 - and with Snow… Continue reading Book Review: Snow, John Banville

Book Review: Slow Horses, Mick Herron

Amongst the wealth of literary fiction and fiction nominated for prizes - specifically the Carnegie Medal and Women's Prize at this time of year - I am often in the midst of worthy or issue-led or meditative novels, all of which I love. But at the same time I am also mired in a morass… Continue reading Book Review: Slow Horses, Mick Herron

Book Review: Small Pleasures, Clare Chambers

Small pleasures – the first cigarette of the day; a glass of sherry before Sunday lunch; a bar of chocolate parcelled out to last a week; a newly published library book, still pristine and untouched by other hands; the first hyacinths of spring; a neatly folded pile of ironing, smelling of summer; the garden under… Continue reading Book Review: Small Pleasures, Clare Chambers

Book Review: Exciting Times, Naoise Dolan

“I thought that if i let anyone in, they’d find out what was broken about me. And then not only would they know, I’d know too.” Meet Ava. Ava is a twenty-two year-old ex pat from Dublin, living in Hong Kong in a grubby Airbnb and teaching English as a Foreign Language to eight year… Continue reading Book Review: Exciting Times, Naoise Dolan

Book Review: Into The Drowning Deep, Mira Grant

“The seas did not forgive, and they did not welcome their wayward children home.” I recall doing a Top Five Saturday post - I really should get back into that meme, there were some lovely people taking part! - about mermaids and, unlike Ariel, I could not find any that did not have nasty vicious… Continue reading Book Review: Into The Drowning Deep, Mira Grant

Book Review: On Midnight Beach, Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick

Seth Cullen killed a dog when he was eight...I kept clear of Dog Cullen. Till the summer we turned seventeen, the summer the dolphin came to Ross Bay. That summer I looked in Dog Cullen’s eyes – one green, one blue – and I forgot to walk away. Once upon a time, in the green… Continue reading Book Review: On Midnight Beach, Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick

Book Review: The Deathless Girls, Kiran Millwood Hargrave

‘What did he say before you murdered him?’‘He asked me to kill him.’‘That’s convenient,’ she said.‘And told me the Dragon had made his daughter a monster. He told me she was strigoi. They say the thirst for blood is like a madness – they must sate it. Even with their own kin.’ I remember really… Continue reading Book Review: The Deathless Girls, Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Book Review: The Survivors, Jane Harper

“Are they supposed to be happy or sad? I mean, is it a celebration of the people who made it, or a memorial to the ones who didn't?” One thing that Jane Harper can do extraordinarily well is to create a sense of place in her writing: her settings, whether they be the oppressive heat… Continue reading Book Review: The Survivors, Jane Harper

Book Review: The Mitford Trial, Jessica Fellowes

‘What would one call a group of Mitfords?’ asked Nancy, her tiny waist beautifully shown off in its tailored jacket of black and white dogtooth check. She sat by a round table, a glass of sherry at her hand. ‘A haven? A giggle?’‘A swarm,’ said Tom, taking a long draught of ale. Once upon a… Continue reading Book Review: The Mitford Trial, Jessica Fellowes

Book Review: White is for Witching, Helen Oyeyemi

“But then, maybe “I don’t believe in you” is the cruelest way to kill a monster.” Oyeyemi has been on my radar for a while, but has been languishing on my bookshelf for longer than she deserves. There were words and phrases connected to her which tantalised - fairy tale, gothic, ghost, unconventional - and… Continue reading Book Review: White is for Witching, Helen Oyeyemi

Book Review: The Redhead by the Side of the Road, Anne Tyler

“The only place I went wrong, he writes, was expecting things to be perfect. Abruptly, he signals for a turn, and when the light changes he heads east instead of continuing north.” After reading a number of heavily plot driven books this year, Redhead was a definite change of pace for me. I'd not read… Continue reading Book Review: The Redhead by the Side of the Road, Anne Tyler

Book Review: Good Girl, Bad Blood, Holly Jackson

“What do you do when the things that are supposed to protect you, fail you like that” A Good Girl's Guide to Murder seemed to explode over my social media last year - and it warranted the press and publicity once I got round to reading it. Pip Fitz-Amobi's investigation into Andie Bell's disappearance and… Continue reading Book Review: Good Girl, Bad Blood, Holly Jackson

Book Review: Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado

Stories can sense happiness and snuff it out like a candle. I have a certain weakness in my reading, and that is fairytales. Fairytales that cleave to the dark and unnerving quality of pre-Disney versions. Fairytales which are anything but children's stories. Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber is one of my favourite books and a… Continue reading Book Review: Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado

Book Review: Pine, Francine Toon

“'My mum.’ The images of death are involuntary and relentless: crushed snail shells, veins in meat, vampire teeth, soil filling a mouth.” The year's end is always a great time to read a chilling novel: I remember finishing 2018 with Melmoth by Sarah Perry; 2019 with Starve Acre by Andrew Michael Hurley; and now 2020… Continue reading Book Review: Pine, Francine Toon

Book Review: The Familiars, Stacey Halls

“If the Devil is poverty, and hunger, and grief, then yes, I think they know the Devil.” Before I begin this review, imagine the following scene. A colleague who generally shares similar tastes to you in reading comes up to you and starts to rave about her current read. It is apparently wonderful, so heartbreaking,… Continue reading Book Review: The Familiars, Stacey Halls

Book Review: The House In The Cerulean Sea, T. J. Klune

“Hate is loud, but I think you'll learn it's because it's only a few people shouting, desperate to be heard. You might not ever be able to change their minds, but so long as your remember you're not alone, you will overcome.” You know what it is like where there is a book that you… Continue reading Book Review: The House In The Cerulean Sea, T. J. Klune

Book Review: Rhythm of War, Brandon Sanderson

“Our weakness doesn’t make us weak. Our weakness makes us strong. For we had to carry it all these years.” How Sanderson churns out these tomes so quickly, I am not sure. But he does and he rarely disappoints: all the pleasure of a Marvel movie, a popcorn novel. Not a guilty pleasure - no… Continue reading Book Review: Rhythm of War, Brandon Sanderson

Book Review: Troubled Blood, Robert Galbraith

“They don’t disappear, the dead. It’d be easier if they did. I can see her so clearly. If she walked up those steps now, part of me wouldn’t be surprised. She was such a vivid person.” This fifth installment of Robert Galbraith's - yes, we all know it is J. K. Rowling - offers up… Continue reading Book Review: Troubled Blood, Robert Galbraith