It is my stop for this thrilling read on its blog tour, and I can’t wait to share my thoughts (so I hope you keep reading).
I was gifted a copy of ‘Crooked’ and I know you should not judge a book by its cover, but I was immediately intrigued by this YA thriller. And this continued as soon as I started reading.
You are immediately thrown into the action; in central London, you meet Ash and her friends as they are involved in a bit of a con. It seems to be quite a money maker for the gang, until they select the wrong mark. And, a turn for the worse, as Ash is dragged into conflict with a dangerous London gangster – or two.
Now, this is another brilliant read that I do not want to spoil for you all. However, I can say that something that I thought was excellent about this book is that there are strong, independent female leads. And they are not scared to take on the men.
There are so many twists and turns in this book that you are not sure who you trust – and who the characters trust. I just had to keep reading, keen to know what revelation would come next and who was really conning who.
So, if you love a thrilling read (and an adventure), whatever your age, then this is the book for you. So, why not pick up a copy and give it go?
I have been lucky enough to be part of the ‘Lot’ blog tour – and I feel very privilaged to have been. (Especially as Barak Obama was a fan).
Lot is a collection of short stories all based around one community of friends and family in America as they work each day, in some cases, simply to survive. The majority of the tales focus around our narrator, the son of a black mother and a Latino father, as he journeys along the complex path of self-discovery. There are regular challenges of identity, family life and survival as he works in the family’s restaurant, and discovering he is gay (which does not go down well with everyone). However, everyone whose tale we come across is facing personal struggle, often about identity, culture and trying to be accepted and successful.
However, all the way throughout the book, there is a constant theme of love. Maybe not always obviously, but it is clear that it keeps all these friends and family ticking along.
There is so much in this book that makes it beautiful – even if not all the stories are happy ones – they are certainly thought-provoking and a reminder that a little kindness and acceptance can go a long way.
I was lucky enough to be gifted a copy of ‘Hidden Intentions’. And I am glad I was, as, again, it is a chance to try something new.
This novel is billed as a murder mystery – however, for me it is more of a study of human nature. You do not need to solve any murder mystery; you are of the motive, victims and culprit. Yet, you go on a journey with Toby as he moves through his formative years to adulthood. You become very aware of the impact that people and their experiences have on the person. There is almost a Jekyll and Hyde feel to the character of Toby. When loved, respected and trusted we have the gentle Toby, but when things are not as they should be and Toby or his world is threatened we the hidden Hyde – the dark side of human nature.
Although this novel is rather slow-paced, that is part of the charm of the novel. After all, time does not always pass at speed in day-to-day life. You need to take the journey at Toby’s pace to understand the path that it takes.
It has quite an ending, which I will not spoil, but as you reach the conclusion of this novel, you will be left contemplating what exactly makes people take some of the actions they do. Also, that age-old question: do you really know anyone? Can you hide who you are? Can we have conflicting emotions towards people?
There are some interesting questions raised in this book, too, as its setting of the 50s and 60s leaves you thinking about gender roles and cultural identity. Do these forced ideas of both create people and force actions, rightly or wrongly?
This is certainly an interesting read – especially if you have an interest in human nature.
This is a book that I have been lucky enough to read as part of a blog tour. Historical fiction is not my genre of choice, but I am always trying to improve this,s and this was an excellent opportunity. Like so many of us, World War One is a time of our history that I have always been interested in and in my day job as a history teacher is is one of the topics that I think is essential to teach.
So, as I picked this book up, I was not sure to expect – or how I would find it to read (subjects I find emotional I often put off reading). However, Fanshawe’s book is a very good read. Although a slow paced tale in parts this, for me, adds to the narrative as you almost feel like you are reading it in real time. You are experiencing what ‘Cello’ is experiencing as it happens. This also makes this books quite an emotional read as you go.
I do not like to reveal spoilers or too much of the tale when I write about a book. All I want to say is that this book, set during 1917 and the battle of Arras, is about one soldier’s (‘Cello’) personal convictions and struggle between what he believes is right versus the expectation of the establishment. Also, the impact that goes on to have, not just on him but also his friend, Ben.
You are left really thinking about the idea of justice, the value of the life, and personal convictions, as well as the impact that war has on so many – not just those present in the moment.
For a thought-provoking read, I would highly recommend this book as one to pick up.