Snow Crash

A spec fiction novel that was almost too much!

  Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson Imagine, if you can, a world where the worst thing that can happen to ordinary folk is your pizza not arriving within thirty minutes of placing the order. That is such a bad thing, that the head of the Mafia, Uncle Enzo, who runs the Cosa Nostra Pizza business Read More

Release Patrick Ness

Blogging about reviewer’s block has ‘released’ me…

Release by Patrick Ness The other day I wrote about my reviewer’s block and how I had a pile of superb books waiting to be reviewed from earlier in the summer. This was one of them… Only the fact that I’d never read Mrs Dalloway blinded me to the power of the first sentence of Read More

wabisabi

A new historical saga – not for me…

The Brethren by Robert Merle I love the idea of getting stuck into reading an historical saga, I really do. I know I can do sagas spread over many novels – just not historical ones it seems. In particular, I started reading Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles with good intentions here but never progressed onto the Read More

Rev diaries

The Divine Rev. Adam Smallbone …

The Rev. Diaries by The Reverend Adam Smallbone, (by Jon Canter) Now into its third short series on BBC2, the sitcom Rev continues to delight. It is simply hilarious, and absolutely hits the spot every time without being sacrilegious or blasphemous.  What is so lovely about it is that doesn’t make fun of faith per se; its targets Read More

wabisabi

‘The sleep of reason brings forth monsters’

Dark Satanic Mills by Marcus & Julian Sedgwick, John Higgins, Marc Olivent It’s a rare thing for me to read a graphic novel – in fact the only one I’ve read since starting this blog was The Crow by James O’Barr, (see here). When I finished reading that, I wasn’t so sure I wanted to Read More

wabisabi

A fascinating setting for a crime novel…

City Of Veilsby Zoë Ferraris This is the first novel I’ve read set in modern day Arabia. It gives a tantalising glimpse of life in Jeddah, particularly how men and women live, and combines that with a complex crime story. The mutilated body of a woman is found on a beach.  Detective Osama Ibrahim initially Read More

wabisabi

A renowned children’s author goes mainstream…

The True Tale of the Monster Billy Deanby David Almond David Almond’s first novel, written for older children, was Skellig (1998). It parallels the stories of two children who find and help an ailing creature who may or may not be an angel, with that of the boy’s little brother who is ill in hospital. Read More

Good man jesus scoundrel christ

The greatest ‘story’ ever told?

The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ by Philip Pullman Storytelling is something that Philip Pullman cares about very much –  he told the audience so at the Oxford Literary Festival a week or so ago (link here). It is also immediately apparent when you start to read this book.  The language is very straight-forward, Read More

wabisabi

Short Takes

The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark The 100th book I read this year. It was a delightful short novel about a young man who arrives in a slightly posh bit of South London, stirs things up rather devilishly bringing this staid bit of town to life, and then he disappears. Is Dougal Douglas Read More