Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The Spring '16 Gut Reactions

It feels like it’s been a long season, in so far as reading some of these books feels like a very long time ago. Thank God I scribble notes as I go along, or else I’d be screwed at this point every quarter. These were the books:

In addition, I also read Lisa Dickenson’s You had me at Merlot and Kirsty Greenwood’s The Vintage Guide to Love and Romance, both of which were charming and pretty much epitomise what Chicklit is about. Both had great voices and fun plots.

Book of the Season is Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling)’s Career of Evil, the latest instalment in the Cormoran Strike series. It was thrilling, as it should be, however it’s the running romantic subplot that has me hankering for the next book. I’m such as sucker for a love story. (And, now I’m on my vicious hunt for the overuse of the word ‘That’, this book had too many, but I’ll let it slide…)
I think I’ve come quite late to The girl on the train, but have managed to keep my ears shut to people talking about it. Trying not to give away too many spoilers, it built the anxiety skilfully, to the point where I was still anxious about it the day after. The MC wasn't particularly likable; not that you despise her, just that you constantly feel pity for her, with her alcoholism and how she keeps falling at the hurdles- and you sit there thinking ‘Noooo don't do that, that is a BAD plan’ and then she can’t help herself but do it, which gets you riled up.
 I’m pretty sure the train line depicted is my local line into London too. I’ve looked at those houses and back-gardens just like she does…
 The Reunion was written by the same author, albeit under a different name. I knew this when I read them, but didn’t really spot any similarities, other than I thought they were both smoothly written and well-constructed. It isn’t a thriller, but it is one of those stories where the truth is revealed in small increments along the way.

Riverkeep- This was a free ARC given away on Twitter, first come first served. I was in there within six seconds, ensnared by the map in the inside cover. LOVE a book that starts with a map, because you instantly know you are about to be swept off somewhere. The writing is gorgeous; phrasing that is beautiful to the point of sometimes being almost too ethereal, so I’m not sure what is going on. The plot is a classic quest by a character who isn’t happy with his appointed future (Hero’s Journey/Star Wars anyone?), the characters are delightfully original and bonkers. Pure fantasy all the way. It is set up and ready for a sequel, although, I almost wished that it hadn’t, as the end felt slightly rushed and too dispersed. If you, or someone you know, have read and enjoyed Angie Sage’s Septimus Heap books, then I’d still heartily recommend this.

The other reactions-
One of these books was written by a writer who I consider one of my sensai, but she left the love interest out of the action for far far too long. I raced through the story, not digesting it properly, wanting to get to ‘his’ bit, and then the romance was too short lived. Still, I guess I learned something about plot structure in sequels…

One of these books I ditched after two chapters. I was so bored, in spite of it being written by a known comedienne.

Two of these books I can’t remember reading, let alone the plot. Oh dear.

Roll on the Summer pile…

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