For a novel so deeply deeply contemporary, there is a timelessness about Smith's writing and prose, accentuated by the interplay of ideas and characters between the four novels in the Quartet. These are luminous books that recognise and celebrate the presence of the past in the present.
All it would take - so I believed - was one ruler willing to allow people of different faiths to live alongside one another without persecution, and surely they would begin to recognise that their common humanity superseded the division they had been taught to fear? The Tudor period does hold such a firm and… Continue reading Execution, S. J. Parris
“I'm just a girl.""It is tragic how well you have been taught to say that with sadness rather than triumph.” Patrick Ness... Dragons... The Cold War... yes please! It is no shock to readers of this blog that Patrick Ness is one of my favourite authors: the Chaos Walking Trilogy, A Monster Calls - which… Continue reading Burn, Patrick Ness
For the sisters & the sistas & the sistahs & the sistren & the women & the womxn & the wimmin & the womyn & our brethren & our bredrin & our brothers & our bruvs & our men & our mandem & the LGBTQI+ members of the human family
So much more than a "black Bridget Jones"
This is the sort of novel I feel the need to reach for metaphor to describe, tired and cliched metaphors at that: it is a roller coaster, a kaleidoscope, a hall of mirrors, shifting sands.... It is dazzling - but being dazzled is not always the most comfortable experience!
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. I skipped over last week's TTT because I am an utter philistine… Continue reading Top Ten Tuesday: Changes in Reading Habits
With two stories in the news today - Safir Boular, at 18, being the youngest girl to be convicted of terrorism offences; and Alia Ghanem speaking of her son. Osama bin Laden - about terrorism and the legal system and family, the importance and relevance of a book like Home Fire is painfully apparent. The… Continue reading Home Fire, Kamila Shamsie
Sometimes, you read a short story that leaves you wanting more and makes you wish that the writer had extended it to a novel length. With this novel, well written and crafted as it is, I wonder whether it could have been reduced to a short story. Or began life as a short story or… Continue reading Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
Many things about being a teacher vex me: longer hours than the public realise, pay, governmental meddling. Paperwork. Ofsted. As a teacher of English though, the lack of imagination in exam boards' choices for set texts is pretty high on the vexing-list. Really, Of Mice And Men, again? An Inspector Calls as modern drama? Don't… Continue reading Mister Pip, Lloyd Jones
Ahhh, Eleanor Catton's Man Booker winning The Luminaries. It's certainly not a quick read! It took such a time to read it - and admittedly my reading coincided with a stroppy baby and a hectic few weeks at work - that the beautiful cover started to wear off! The M of LUMINARIES on the front… Continue reading The Luminaries, Eleanor Catton