Archive > February 2012

Portrait of a Paradox

Buy book online

Buy book online

Didi: A Political Biography by  Monobina Gupta, book reviewWhatever Mamata Banerjee’s government brings to West Bengal she has found a place for herself in history as the woman who brought down the world’s longest serving communist government. Monobina Gupta’s biography is an incisive analysis of the factors that brought Didi – as Mamata Banerjee is fondly referred to by the world at large – to the forefront of power.

Monobina Gupta begins by describing the character of a woman who can be exasperating and magnetic by turns. She points out that Mamata hails from the lower middle classes and therefore is not a bhadralok as many of the top echelons of the CPI-M are.


Continue reading

Miracle on Regent Street

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Miracle on Regent Street , Ali Harris, book reviewMiracle on Regent Street by Ali Harris is the story of Evie, who feels she is invisible. She lives with her married sister, has no love life and her colleagues think she is the girl she replaced two years earlier. The department store she works in and loves is struggling, so Evie decides to turn things round, but no one realizes the changes are thanks to her…

Having heard good things about Miracle on Regent Street, when I fancied a bit of lightweight reading around Christmas this seemed like a good choice. Sadly, it soon became apparent that I should have gone for something else.


Continue reading

Daughters

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Daughters, Elizabeth Buchan, book reviewIn Elizabeth Buchan’s latest novel, Daughters, we meet the Russell family. Lara has brought up her stepdaughters, Jasmine and Eve, and her daughter, Maudie, over since her ex-husband Bill moved out. Bill is now marrying Sarah and moving to a large crumbling house in the country. He thinks it’s the perfect location for his daughter Eve’s wedding to her fiancé Andrew. This is the background to this story which is all about family tensions particularly in the stressful run up to a big wedding!

Tensions are running high as Eve prepares for her wedding.


Continue reading

Every Day Advice

Buy book online

Buy book online

Thinner Dinner (Paperback) by  S. Krishnan, book review‘It’s hard to figure out how to eat the dinner of your dreams, without letting the kilos climb. That’s why this book.’ – Shubhra Krishan

The book is attractive from the moment you see the bold cover. Inside you’ll find very personal pieces on eating and staying thin peppered with attractive illustrations and delivered in a chatty tone of voice. There are quite a few useful tips on cutting down on the portions that one eats, or serving soup with olive oil drizzled baked croutons rather than fried ones. Of course what she says – eat light at dinner – is not exactly a pathbreaking revelation, but it is delivered in a way guaranteed to appeal to today’s trendy young homemakers.


Continue reading

The Library Book

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

The Library BookLibraries have always played a significant role in my life. Until she retired when I was at university, my mother worked in our town’s central library and had done so for many years. She took me to it on a regular basis from an early age, and I was on first name terms with most of the staff who worked there. She occasionally had to go out and run one of the tiny branch libraries that lay in small villages miles away (so small they opened for just a few hours a week with just one member of staff); if one of these shifts came up in the school holidays, I went with her. Strange as it must seem now, I rather looked forward to these trips.

Continue reading

Micro

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Micro - Michael Crichton, Richard Preston, book reviewSince my early teens I have been a fan of Michael Crichton – most of my adult reading life. I have always looked forward to his novels, and was deeply saddened to hear of his death in 2008. Yet since then there have been two new Crichton novels published – Pirate Latitudes, discovered completed on his computer after his death, and the recent Micro, which was around a third completed and has been finished by Richard Preston, based on Crichton’s outline and notes.

Prior to his death, Crichton described Micro as “an adventure story like Jurassic Park”. Set in Hawaii, it follows six graduate students as they visit a company called Nanogen which is promising them jobs using advanced technology and research methods.

,

Continue reading

Talking About Jane Austen in Baghdad

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Talking About Jane Austen in Baghdad: The True Story of an Unlikely Friendship - Bee Rowlatt, May Witwit, book reviewWhen I heard that there was a book called Talking About Jane Austen in Baghdad – The True Story of an Unlikely Friendship my first thought was that it sounded just a bit too similar to ‘Reading Lolita in Tehran’ and I will admit that I dismissed it as another ‘jumping on the bandwagon’ book and thought no more of it. Then in autumn 2011 BBC Radio 4 did an adaptation, teasing the listener with just 15 minutes each day and I was hooked. I loved the adaptation of the book so much that I ordered a copy almost immediately – though perhaps to call it a ‘book’ is the wrong way to describe this. In effect, it’s just a collection of emails gathered over several years of friendship between a UK-based journalist and an Iraqi academic.

,

Continue reading

The Garden of Evening Mists

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

The Garden of Evening Mists , Tan Twan Eng, book reviewWhen Judge Teoh takes early retirement from work she’s hiding from her past, her present and even her future. She leaves Kuala Lumpur behind and takes to the hills, returning to a place where she knew emotional and physical extremes – great pain, peace and rebirth, the love of her life and friendships that persisted for decades. Returning to Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands, she goes to the place she loves – an isolated house with a beautiful but by now overgrown Japanese garden. To her friend Frederick, she reveals why she’s retired early and he persuades her to record her past whilst she still has the opportunity. Her story unfolds over 350 pages, seamlessly moving between past and present, through the times and places that made her who she is. It’s fiction but in no time at all I was so caught up in the story that she felt very much like a real woman telling a real story – all the more remarkable that the writer, Tan Twan Eng, is a man.


Continue reading

Horrid Henry and the Zombie Vampire

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Horrid Henry and the Zombie Vampire - Francesca Simon, book reviewThe book is about Horrid Henry and his perfect brother ‘Perfect Peter’. Horrid Henry hates Perfect Peter. There are four stories in this book. The main characters are Horrid Henry, Perfect Peter, mum, dad, Moody Margaret and Miss Battle-Axe. I liked Horrid Henry because he is witty and hilarious.

My favourite part was when Horrid Henry tricked Miss Battle-Axe by showing her Peter’s story. I would recommend this book to boys and girls over four years old. I would recommend it because it is interesting and amusing. The message is ‘mischief can be funny but sometimes it is too much’.


Continue reading

Between a Mother and Her Child

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online

Between a Mother and Her Child (Michael Joseph) (Paperback), Elizabeth Noble, book reviewA couple of years ago I read Elizabeth Noble’s Things I Want My Daughters To Know and ever since then I have been hooked on this wonderful author. Her novels are truthful, poignant and sometimes heartbreaking, but ever so readable. I couldn’t wait to pick up her latest book – Between a Mother and Her Child and the moment I did I hardly could bring myself to put it down.

Between a Mother and Her Child tells the story of a family reeling from tragedy. Whilst travelling on his gap year, Maggie and Bill’s son, Jake, was killed by the Asian Tsunami that struck on Boxing Day, 2004.


Continue reading

Things I Want My Daughters to Know

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online

Things I Want My Daughters to Know - Elizabeth Noble, book reviewI had read quite a bit about this book – Things I want My Daughters to Know by Elizabeth Noble – but had actually shied away from reading it because I thought it would be just too sad. The reason why I thought this is because it is about the letters and journals a mother leaves her four daughters after she has died. However, recently I won a book on the Galaxy Book Club website and as this was one of the choices I thought I would give it a go and I am so glad that I did!

The story is all about four sisters – Lisa, Jennifer, Amanda and Hannah.


Continue reading

Frozen Moment

Buy book online

Buy book online Buy book online Buy book online

Frozen Moment (Paperback)  Camilla Ceder, book reviewEarly one wintry morning Ake Melkersson has car trouble on his way to work. He drives off the main road to a garage he vaguely recalls having used in the past. When he gets there he finds the dead body of a man on the ground. Panicking, Ake speeds off, stopping in a lay-by from where he calls his neighbour Seja, a trainee reporter, who he asks to meet him and wait with him for the police to arrive. When Seja sees the body she behaves very strangely and she asks Ake to let the police believe she was there when he found the body. Inspector Christian Tell is the officer in charge of the investigation into the man’s death and he finds it difficult to make any headway. It’s not until a second murder is discovered that the police have something useful to work on.


Continue reading

prev posts