General Fiction

This is a great addition to the long list of great novels that Ian McEwan has produced. There were two or three that missed the mark for me – Sunday, Solar and Sweet Tooth. But his previous novel to this, The Children Act, was excellent and this latest is McEwan back to his very best… Read More

The problem with reviewing a book that you love is that it is often hard to describe just why you like the book so much - the usual adages of ‘good characterisations’, ‘innovative plot line’ and ‘page-turning entertainment’ are the obvious explanations, but often that is simply not enough. This is especially the case when… Read More

The North Water was one of the titles from last year’s Man Booker Prize long list and I was impressed. This is an excellent piece of historical fiction, which crosses the boundaries into the thriller genre. It works equally well in both. Having finished the book, I reflected on why I enjoyed it so much… Read More

This is a departure for Sebastian Barry, a book set entirely in mid to late nineteenth century America. We follow the fortunes of two young men, John Cole and Thomas McNulty, who sign up for the army and end up fighting in the Indian Wars and then the Civil War. I say it is a… Read More

I found this novel excellent. It worked so well on lots of levels. Very simply, it is the story of an extended family over time. It begins at the christening party for Franny Keating, where the uninvited Bert Cousins turns up and kisses Beverley Keating, the young girl's mother. This sets the whole story in… Read More

This is a good yarn from a writer who is more familiar for several Russian themed novels such as Gorky Park and Red Square. The Girl from Venice is set in the final days of the Second World War, with Italy on the cusp of defeat as the Americans slowly push north through the country… Read More

Shakespeare’s last masterpiece, adapted for a modern novelization by a contemporary literary master? The temptation is surely too good to pass up, which is why I jumped at the chance to read this one. Unfortunately, the novel doesn’t quite live up to expectations. Felix is the innovative, pioneering Artistic Director of the Makeshiweg Theatre, bringing… Read More

In contemporary Western society, the concept of female self-starvation is something that most of us would have encountered, whether it is through popular diet plans that make claims on how to achieve the ideal svelte figure broadcast by fashionable celebrities, to the other end of the spectrum, where girls and women seek to self-regulate their… Read More

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