I read just before bed and at the moment – with the rewrite and having just discovered the wonderful writer’s network that exists on Twitter – I’m burning the candle at both ends. This often means 3-5 pages into my nightly read, I’m flaked out with a book splayed across my face. Whereby my husband finds me several hours later (we are both creatures of the night, you see), disentangles me from my book, turns off my bedside light and gently budges me back onto my side of the bed.
And with that said, my “Just Read” list for June is looking a tad pitiful and of course, I’ve added a whole new stack of books to my “To Be Read” list
Here they are:
Terms and Conditions -Robert Glancy. The verdict: This is a feel-good book in the vein of The Rosie Project. I could relate to the protagonist (a contract lawyer) who felt trapped in corporate life and I got a kick out of the way he managed to exact his revenge upon the evil corporate world. There were a few well-trodden tropes (such as the super-competitive older brother and gorgeous but soul-destroying wife) and the story did follow a fairly predictable path. Although I would have liked to see the writer surprise me by breaking with the safe plot route, the characters were great (in particular the protagonist’s younger brother and his older brother’s wife), and the action was entertaining enough to forgive the cliches. BUT, I would suggest reading Hell Has Harbour Views by Richard Beasley for an infinitely more wicked, less predictable look into the evil world of corporate law (and I’m not just saying that because it’s an Australian book (T&C is British).
Absent – Katie Williams (YA). The premise: While taking part in a physics project, Paige accidentally falls off the school roof and dies. Now, along with two other ghosts, she is destined to roam the school grounds indefinitely. But when a rumour circulates that she jumped rather than fell, she looks for a way to clear her reputation. The verdict: This was a sneaky little book. I have to admit that I wasn’t sold in the beginning. The protagonist’s early explanation of events didn’t ring true to me and that tested my commitment to the remainder of the book. BUT, there’s a good reason for that and the surprise when it came, was worth the wait. Short, sweet and well-executed.
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein (YA). The premise: This was a story about two best girlfriends stuck in France during WWII, One is an ATA pilot, the other is a spy – the story is told in duel narrative. The verdict: I love, love, loved this book. Julie’s voice in particular held me in thrall for the first three-quarters of the book. Her jaunty humour and cheeky phraseology (I especially loved “The Pobble With No Toes” and “Kiss Me Hardy!”) had me grinning like an idiot, even though she was under interrogation by the Gestapo. The ending was shocking – despite the forshadowing – and just when I thought I’d made it through with a stiff upper lip (as one of Julie’s chums might say), Maddie’s narrative sneaked up on me and I found myself welling up right at the end. A warning: some parts are difficult to swallow (ie unrealistic); but Verity had me so wrapped up in her charms, I would have forgiven her almost anything in the end.
The Fault in Our Stars – John Green. My bookclub is doing this one for our July meeting. Although I’ve heard big things about it, I’m going in with relaxed expectations. My only previous John Green – Looking For Alaska – didn’t sit so well with me, so this one will be interesting.
To Be Read:
Daughter of Smoke and Bone – Laini Taylor. I have a massive life-crush on Laini Taylor. Her blog is so vibrant and crafty – every time I visit her page, I resolve to jazz mine up (as you can see, the inclination hasn’t truly taken hold – but hey, I’ve been writing!). I can’t wait to see how Laini’s colourful life-force transfers to the page.
A Wrinkle in Time – Madeleine L’Engle
Haunting Violet – Alyxandra Harvey
The Boneshaker – Kate Milford
A Tale for the Time Being – Ruth Ozeki
Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn