What’s new at Write Note Reviews? Once again my to-review bookshelf is sagging – if it could speak, I’m sure there would be some choice words directed at me. And not, “Gee, what great books you’ve got here. Your taste is impeccable” or even “What were you thinking getting that book?”. I’m thinking the words would be more of the unmentionable variety. Anyway, here’s a look at some of the books I’ve reviewed in the last few weeks (there are loads more on the site):
All the reviews can be found on the site (use the search feature and sometimes you do have to scroll down the page) but here are snippets from the most recent:
How to Be a Good Wife by Emma Chapman
Every now and then, along comes a book that takes you out of your comfort zone, but wills you to keep reading. That’s what How to Be a Good Wife by Emma Chapman was for me – a book full of tension and questions that swept me up and into the story, depositing me at the end with more questions and a lingering uncertainty. “What just happened there?”, I asked at the end, feeling like I’d been scooped up by a dumper of a wave and dumped hurly-burly on the sand (and wanting to go back for more). Read more.
Grace Grows by Shelle Sumners
As we all know, best-laid plans sometimes fall by the wayside when life gets in the way.Grace Grows is a fun and engaging novel based on the premise that, to paraphrase John Lennon, “life is what happens when you’re busy making plans”. While the concept is nothing new, the book delivers an old idea with a fresh approach that makes it highly readable. Read more.
Ghostman by Roger Hobbs
The bar was set high for Ghostman: “Oceans Eleven meets Catch Me if You Can meets Lee Child”. That’s a tough call. Would it live up to the hype? That’s the question I asked when I picked up Roger Hobbs’ debut thriller to review. As a Lee Child fan, I had high expectations so I was looking for something special. What I found was a book that hooked me in from the start and kept me on tenterhooks through to the end. The hype was spot on. Read more.
Paper Chains by Nicola Moriarty
There’s a lot to love about Nicola Moriarty’s latest book Paper Chains. Moriarty has delivered an emotive read that is both bittersweet and affirming, and highlights the lengths we go to mask our weaknesses. It’s also hard to put down. The day I picked it up it was too hot to sleep, so guess what I did instead? Read more.
Have you ever lost your sense of self? Been so worn down emotionally by life in all its surprises and challenges that you don’t know how to find you amid all the darkness? I have. And my guess is you have too. Or will one day. No matter how strong you are, there are always moments when your self-worth fractures and you wonder how you can feel good about being you again. Susanna Freymark’s own experiences of losing and finding herself were the inspiration behind her novel Losing February. What she delivers is at times confronting and evocative, but despite the strong and sometimes disturbing images, it’s a strangely addictive read. Read more.
I’ve discovered a little something about myself – much to my surprise, I quite like crime fiction.
Up until now, I thought that the few crime novels that I’d read and enjoyed had been a bit of a fluke. I read Kathryn Fox’s Cold Grave last year and loved it, and earlier, thoroughly enjoyed The Siren’s Sting, by Miranda Darling. I thought they must just have been particularly good examples of the genre. I’ve since read others, and enjoyed them equally.
And now, I’ve just finished reading Web of Deceit,by Katherine Howell (Pan Macmillan) and found myself unable to put it down, I was enthralled by the mystery and entertained by the action. I couldn’t wait for the truth to be revealed…
So on reflection, I think it’s fair to say that a pattern has emerged. I really like crime fiction, and in particular those that have a ‘specialty’ to which the author can write authentically from personal, professional experience. In this case, Katherine Howell is a former paramedic and brings to the story all the drama, trauma and heroism that the work of a paramedic involves.
For Mandi’s full review, click here.