New Monthly 5 Book Review

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

My next review is for "The Binding" by Bridget Collins.

I want to start this review by mentioning the cover of the book - it's beautiful. There's a real spate of these beautifully covered paperbacks coming onto the market over the last year and they're lovely. Gorgeous colours and a soft touch cover that is just a pleasure to hold. You'll know them when you see them.

Anyway onto the book. This one I came across by chance while I was at work (my day job) and it took my attention so I began reading it on my lunch breaks. I was hooked pretty quickly and by the time I was a few chapters in, I wasn't just reading it on my lunch breaks, but at home as well. 

I really liked the concept in the story (spoiler alert), that a person might have their memories "bound" into a book. I could see the notion of why the 'Binders' would be thought of as Witches and was drawn in by the characterisations, the fear that people had for the Binders, the ideals of an apprentice and the twists in the story were very clever in how they were done. 

If you want to lose yourself in a story that is as much a love story as it is a mystery, this is the one for you. I'm giving "The Binding" a 4 book score as I will want to read it again for sure. I enjoyed this one and I think you will too. 

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading! x

Hi everyone! Welcome back to the reviews.

My first review of the day is for another of my Matthew Reilly collection, "Scarecrow & The Army of Thieves".

If you've followed my reviews for a while, you'll know I'm a huge fan of Matthew Reilly novels. This one doesn't disappoint. 

I wasn't a fan of fast paced action novels until I came across Matthew Reilly a few years ago and I've not regretted buying any of his books!

"Scarecrow & The Army of Thieves" is a novel in the 'Captain Shane M. Schofield' series, 'Scarecrow' being his call sign. Another novel of great adventure, tough spots, tight manuevers and whiplash inducing changes of direction that just grabs ahold of you and brings you along for the ride. 

I'm sure I've said this before in regards to Matthew's books, but he has a way of writing that just sucks you in from the start and you get this feeling that you're going to miss something if you put the book down. Impossible of course, but you just don't want to stop reading once you start. I love the characters that Matthew builds within the books, and while you're aware that the characters are, of course works of fiction, they're written in such a way that you feel  like they've become your friends and every time you read one of Matthew's books, you're right there in the action, running alongside the characters, and the adrenaline rush is crazy - there's more than one occasion I've put Matthew's books down and felt like I've just had the race of my life!

If you haven't tried a Matthew Reilly book, you're missing out. 

I can't describe too much of the book as I want you to read it for yourself, but also, I don't want the possible spoilers to ruin everything if you're still catching up to date with the books. 

This book gets a 5 book score from me - a great book that will be read time and again and has pride of place on my bookcase!

Enjoy, and as always, Keep Reading! x

Good Morning! Welcome back to the reviews, 'To Read...Or not'. 

This time I'm going to be looking at another of Matthew Reilly's boks, "The Three Secret Cities".

Oh my goodness was I excited to recive this book in the post! I have been waiting for this one for a long while (due to work constraints I wasn't aware it was released in 2018), but the wait was well worth it.

This book is one of the latest in one of Matthew's two main series, Jack West jnr. As with all of Matthew's books, I love the fast paced action, the constant areas of "oh my gosh is he going to get out of this?" and the highs and lows as the plot continues.

I've been a massive fan of Matthew Reilly for many years now, and have all of his books so far, and not one has disappointed. The action, the characters, all of it are just brilliant. Matthew has a way of writing (may havae mentioned this before) that makes you feel like you're right in there with the characters, running for your lives, trying to solve issues and problems, the whole football field of emotions.

I'm ridiculously excited to know that the next book in the Jack West jnr series is being released this year - i'll be the first one in line to buy it, that's for sure.

If you've not read Matthew's books before, now is a great time to start. But as this is part of a series, start at the beginning, everything makes sense to you that way. The first book in the Jack West jnr series is "Seven Ancient Wonders".

A solid 5 book score from me - this book was just fantastic, another hit from Matthew Reilly.

enjoy, stay safe x