The Paying Guests, Sarah Waters

There is so much to admire about this book that I feel almost guilty that I didn’t love it. And I feel I might struggle to explain why without losing sight of the fact that it is a great book and beautifully written in places. As you’d expect from Waters, The Paying Guests inhabits a…

Zom-B, Darren Shan

Miniature review due to absence of Internet and wifi. In fact, only now possible because phone can – sometimes – get some reception… I bought this for my son and wanted to cast my eye over it before he read it. He is only twelve and these are zombies. My ears still ring with his…

The Girl With Glass Feet, Ali Shaw

There are some books that revel in plot, action and events. Other books – perhaps quieter books – are content to develop narrative: characters and settings, relationships and language. This book by Ali Shaw is very clearly and very effectively one of the latter: little really happens, but so much is created. Lets take the…

Black Swan Green, David Mitchell

This is a truly exceptional book! And, before I discuss the book, a truly exceptional reading of it by a chap called Chris Nelson. Now, I don’t know who Chris Nelson is. I have googled his name idly but I have no clue. I do not know his age or where he is from. But…

Anno Dracula, Kim Newman

I have a confession. I love Dracula. Both the character and Stoker’s novel. And I love vampires. Not the sparkly, fairy, effete version populating Meyer’s asinine attempts at fiction (“Dear Dracula, do you remember that one night seventeen years ago? Well, we need to talk. Sincerely, Tinkerbell”) but full blown raging bloodlust sensual sexual visceral…