New Monthly 5 Book Review

Hello everyone, welcome back.

Tonight's review is for "The Tattooist of Auschwitz" by Heather Morris. 

First I have 2 questions for you; firstly, have you read it? secondly, if not, why the heck not? 

The book is based on the true story of Lale Sokolov, the Tattooist of Auschwitz. I'll be honest, I wasn't sure what to expect from the book, I've heard of the horrors of the camps in much the same way as millions of people around the world heard of the horrors in the camps, but did I want to read what was, in essence, a first hand account? Turns out I did. 

This was a recommended book by a member of my book club (Emma James Book Club) who insisted that I read it. As it happens, I'm glad I did, finishing the book in just a couple of evenings. 

The horror of the camp is there in the background, but this story is much more about the people Lale encounters, how he came to be the Tattooist, hw he met his wife, the love of his life and moreover, how they came to survive the camp. I have been saddened reading the book and wanted nothing more than to sit and have a cry, but I wouldn't be helping those in the book. More than anything, I wanted to read what happened next, was there a happy ending? What happended when the camp was closed?

The book didn't disappoint and I would urge all of you to read it, however much you think you know about the Holocaust. To read the book is to hear Mr Sokolov's memories of his time spent in Auschwitz, to read the descriptions of the camp and daily life in there, to understand. 

To read this is to truly feel something about the strength of the human spirit, especially when all seems lost but you have that 1 thing you want to live for, that 1 thing that keeps you trying everyday to get through and come out the other side. 

I'm giving "The Tattooist of Auschwitz" a 3 book score, not because I didn't enjoy the book, I truly did. My score is more around whether I could bear to read the heartaching story again. I'm sure I will, but not just yet. Either way, I encourage you all to read it.

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading! x

Welcome back, my second review of the day is for "The Broken Window" by Jeffrey Deaver.

If you think Mr Deaver's name sounds familiar, it should, he is the author behind the character of Lincoln Rhyme, first seen in 1997's "The Bone Collector".

I really like the Lincoln Rhyme character, so I settled down and got stuck into this book. I'll be honest, this one freaked me a little more than just gruesome murders and so on would do, but for a reason not many would expect. This one gave me a real sense of 'big brother is watching you', an understanding of how the adverts received, perceived as junk mail but somehow tailored to you are sent out. 

I also now feel like I have to go and live off the grid as it were in a lovely log cabin somewhere pretty, go back to writing on my typewriter, and the only things around to be annoyed by the clack, clack, clack of the keys would be woodland animals. 

So I can safely say I have found something that scares me more than anything - the frightening amount of information that seems available to anyone and their aunty about yours truly. Makes me shudder even thinking about it. 

Back to the book, this is a hallmark Lincoln Rhyme, if you've read any of the Lincoln Rhyme series you will understand where I'm coming from. I love how the character is working hard to overcome his own personal issues with his mobility, as well as his relationship with Amelia Sachs, the positive affect she appears to have on Rhyme, who is an otherwise gruff and terse person to behold. 

This one is another example of how clever the plot lines are in Mr Deaver's books. Just when you think you have an idea as to who the bad guy is, you find yourself off down a different route, and I'll be honest, I did wonder on this one if a certain incident was too good to be true, but even I was pulled in the same directions as the characters as they were working the case for themselves. 

I loved it, and plan to complete my collection of Lincoln Rhyme novels as soon as I can find the space on my bookcase!

A 4 book score from me once again, a great book and I'd urge you to read if you like a good crime thriller. 

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading x


Hello, welcome back to my book review page, "To read....or not". 

This time I'm looking at "Moonlight over Mayfair", the sequel to Anton Du Beke's debut novel, "One Enchanted Evening". 

I was surprised by how much I'd wanted to read this one after I finished reading "One Enchanted Evening". I was really taken with the characters and the way I felt like I was being swept along in the ambience of the era being written about. 

Of course, I was tickled by the idea that one of the characters made their way to Brixton, where I happen to be now - but that is beside the point. 

"Moonlight over Mayfair" does the exact thing a good sequel should do, it picks up from where "One Enchanted Evening" finished and kept the action and story going, all the while adding more depth to the characters. 

There's a lovely romance to the novel and a real sense of family to the characters, and I admit, I'm looking forward to seeing if there will be a third installment of the tale. 

If you're looking for a book that is easy on the mind when reading, with good characters and story, this is the book for you. There's enough tie in to the first book, "One Enchanted Evening" that means you could read this one alone and still understand what was going on, but I'd urge you to read the books in order, just sit down, curl up in your favourite chair and get stuck in. While the weather is grim and dark, use these books to lose yourself for a time. 

A 4 book score from me - I'll be reading this one again no doubt about it. 

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading x

Good Morning, Welcome back.

This morning I wanted to post my review for Anton Du Beke's debut novel, "One Enchanted Evening".

Hands up if you know who I'm talking about! Well for those that don't, Anton is a principal professional Dancer on the TV programme "Strictly Come Dancing" and has been a part of the line up since the beginning of the show a decade ago and is very popular. 

I was a little surprised when the book was released, sure, Anton is an amazing dancer, but can he write? 

Turns out he can. Of course the main character is a dancer, stands to reason doesn't it? But the story is more than that. I like that this has an old charm about it, set in the period between the end of the Great War and the start of the second, this is more than a book about a dancer in a prominent hotel, this is a story that weaves dancing and politics of the dancefloor with the politics of the day, the never ending cycle of secrets and lies, love and hate all scattered liberally with glitz and sparkles. 

I've enjoyed reading this book a lot more than I thought I would, really thought that the book was a fad (Sorry Anton, no offence meant) a gimick to further increase Anton's personality and fame. I was wrong and I admit that. 

The book is a joy, and it's nice to read something that has a story you can follow and be immersed in without too much violence and language as I've seen in some books. There's revelations about the characters that surprise you, but also keeps you wanting to know more. I enjoyed this one so much, I purchased Anton's second book, also set in the same hotel called "Moonlight Over Mayfair" and I can't wait to read it. 


I was going to give the book a 3 book score, but I've settled on a 4 book score. I was just so surprised by the book and how much I've enjoyed reading it. 

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading! x

Hi everyone, welcome back. 

This may not be a long awaited book review, but this time it is for "Midnight Sun" by Stephanie Meyer. 

What is "Midnight Sun"? It is the very long-awaited retelling of "Twilight" from Edward's perspective. 

Spoiler Alert - If you haven't read it and want to, read it now before you read my review.

Not sure what I was expecting by this instalment in the franchise, but to receive a book roughly the same size if not a little thicker than "Breaking Dawn" wasn't it. 

I've actually enjoyed this book, maybe more than I thought I would. I like seeing the action from the other side as it were and I think the story is better (dare I say) than the original version. (fairly sure I heard jaws drop then) Before you all go on a thunderous rampage and start sticking voodoo dolls of me with enormous pins, bear with me, let me explain. 

"Midnight Sun" gives you more details that you ever had in "Twilight". You see the whole original 'girl meets vampire' love story from that vampire's point of view, you get to read/"hear" the conversations that are meant to have been had in Edward's family as the story unfolds, and while you still really want to give Rosalie a shake and tell her to get a grip, it is actually nice to at least try and get an understanding of Edward's thoughts and feelings as he gets to grips with what is assumed to be his first love, his feelings for Bella. 

For the adults out there, already groaning, moaning, and being generally pedantic over the book, again remember the audience the book is aimed at - Young Adults - as in teenagers, as in those members of society most likely to understand the feelings head on and know exactly what is going through the characters' minds. There really is no reason to tear the book to shreds and curse all over the place - "Midnight Sun" is a good book. 

I will admit, there are some aspects of Edward's behaviour that raised an eyebrow and may have been considered as stalker tendencies, but remember it's I suppose akin to a description of that first love feeling that I'm sure we've all had at one time or another, when we were all busy doodling boyfriend/girlfriend's names on notebooks and practicing our married name signatures (girls anyway) and while in real life the behaviour wouldn't be accepted, this is a fictional story about fictional characters and shouldn't really be taken as real life. 

I'm sure most of you have read "Twilight" and can appreciate when I say that I'm glad that when the movie of the same name was released, the producers/director had changed the character that speaks the line "I could smell her across the field" from Alice to Rosalie as the line is just such a bitchy line that it never made sense for Alice to be the one saying it, a thought I was reminded of when it appears in "Midnight Sun". 

Stephanie has woven the two books cleverly, using the conversations between the characterswell, but I did notice that there were some differences, statements given in slightly different ways, extra statements givein in conversations that aren't featured in "Twilight" and that makes for a slightly confusing read at times; not that you can't imagine the conversation taking place, but it does lead to think you're reading a different conversation than what you may remember from the original book. Don't worry though, the tewaks don't detract from the story.

I like that you get the running thoughts that Edward is picking up from the others, from the catty comments Jessica thinks to the jealous and grumpy comments from Mike, these add a slight comedy factor to the book. I also like that there is a little more detail about Edward's family, the individuals. You get a better sense as to who they are, and their personalities than previously shown and this demonstrates how hard it is to create 3rd party characters and give them life and a backstory when you're writing a piece in the 1st person as you're only giving the 3rd party characters the personality as seem by the 1st person, traits noticed by that person's interactions and not necessarily the way the author meant them to be. 

I really think Stephanie has brought more life as it were to Edward's family, to theor traits and habits, to the personalities, and makes them just that little more believable. Jasper's added quirks were interesting and while I first thought, "Why didn't I see this before" the answer is as I described, only seeing Jasper through Bella's eyes previously, of course you won't know his quirks in the same way Edward would, Bella's only human (in the first book anyway). 

Whatever side of the fence you guys come down on, I like this book, I enjoyed it. For that reason, I'm giving "Midnight Sun" a 4 book score. I would read this one again. 

So enjoy, and as always Keep Reading! x