gill -50 books - never gonna happen

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gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 27 Mar 2010, 06:39

1: The Last Secret of the Temple by Paul Sussman.

A sort of da Vinci code type storyline about the ancient Menorah stolen from Jerusalem by the Romans and it’s iconography for Judaic religion and culture. Starts off as an interesting thriller that follows the relic as it passes through the hands of Nazi’s to modern day Palestinian activists. Then the plot becomes more political within the current Israeli/Palestinian situation.
The characters were interesting, every faith was represented by a main player, and for me that was the problem…too much nicey nicey balance. The book was neither one thing nor the other. I, personally, would have loved more depth about the Nazi’s enthrallment and plundering of Egypt during WWII, but the storyline ran on to the present day and Middle Eastern politics, which did not grab my imagination to the same extent.
The Last Secret of the Temple had some nice ideas, and was an interesting enough thriller though I was never on the edge of my seat, but all in all it felt overstuffed (unlike my seat). I would have preferred some of the ideas to be delved into further rather than cobbled together in a whirlwind timeline. It was an okay read for the commute to work.

2: The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins

I have seen this as a television drama many times with various success but decided I wanted to read the book for myself. (Especially as I got an ereader for Christmas and this was one of the freebies). It did draw me in, and I could see why it was a sensation in its day. A bit overlong for the ideas and impact it held, but then it was serialized and could be dragged out for popular effect. I may be wrong but was this the seed for Sarah Waters Fingersmith? (I might have dreamed up reading that somewhere, not sure). I enjoyed it though it is a rather slow plot built upon by various narrators povs. It was interesting to read a good early example of Gothic intrigue. (Well, I’m going to call it Gothic intrigue, not sure how it’s pegged elsewhere.).

3: Yours for the Asking by Kenna White

I usually like Kenna White and consider her a safe buy. This book was a little soft, as in no real bite. The heroine held back from her love interest so much the spark between them never really ignited. The sex scene fizzled out, too. And the heroine’s sister was a little to clichéd as the spoilt sibling who always got her way. It felt rushed.
I also didn’t like the recipes that popped up after every chapter, reminded me of a Joanne Fluke, or Debbie MacComber book, just a tad to sweet for me (the recipes too). Then again some readers may love that sort of thing and run for their pinny?

4: Stepping Stones by Karin Kallmaker

I love me some KK. She researches her little heart out and uses every inch of it. This was one of those books, big on the detail of the glamorous Hollywood lifestyle. I bought Selena almost immediately as she was presented through her work (this is where the research pays off). The Gail character I struggled with. I’m guessing she should have been the more emotional of the two as she guided the romance. Selena had emotional baggage but it wraps up nicely, Gail didn’t gel emotionally quite as well for me. I enjoyed it because I’ve liked KK’s writing for nearly twenty years now, and on a quiet afternoon I may take this one back down from the shelf and reread it to see what I missed about Gail.



Chaps, Jove Belle, BSB.

Got this as a freebie and enjoyed it very much. I loved the Idaho location, it was clear the writer knew the area well and it came across. The characters were well developed and I especially liked Brandi’s problems and the fact Eden’s ill-gotten gains did not buy her out of trouble - the land was sold and they all got on with it. I struggled a little with Eden’s past, but then that’s all it was, the immediacy of her present situation was the core of the story.
I also liked that Brandi had to wait for Eden and then allow her back into her life, and that Eden came home very sheepishly, a redeemed character who could barely believe her luck at being loved. As a romance it entertained, and the sex scenes were balanced within the story and well written.

Company of Liars, Karen Maitland, Penguin.

Impulse buy while waiting to be served at Waterstones bookshop, and I’m glad I reached out and snagged it. This is a writer I am going to look out for. I liked her pure story telling style (something I crave for myself). Set is medieval England during the opening year of the Great Plague. Great research and a good, spooky tale - very enjoyable and immensely readable.

The Outlander, Gil Adamson, Bloomsbury

Set in an era and country I like reading about, Canada, late 1800s. It is an extremely well written, atmospheric story with beautiful descriptions of nature. The plot in itself is a little straight forward – basically a woman is on the run. She’s always referred to as the Widow, though we know her name it is not used and this created a distance from her than made me less connected and caring, I suppose. She’s a hunted murderess and had some sort of disorder, like dyslexia or ADD, not sure which. I did grow to like her quirky flaws and rooted for her against the men tracking her down. She takes the reader on quite a journey too, and some of it, like the Frank mining disaster, is a real part of Canadian history. But it is more about her struggle for survival than the overall plotline that engaged me. A lovely piece of writing and a sterling story behind it.
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby ElaineB » 27 Mar 2010, 07:18

You'll never make it to 50 if you stop counting!
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 28 Mar 2010, 09:48

you have the eyes of an eagle...
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 28 Mar 2010, 09:49

...and maybe it was my secret plan to stop at 13 and declare 'Eureka - I'm finished!'
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby deej » 28 Mar 2010, 10:01

rofl rofl rofl
Raise your hand if someone you know is alive today because you can't afford a hit man.
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 29 Mar 2010, 08:37

29 – The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry (Harper)
Not an easy book on so many levels. It deals with survival and dissociate disorders, as well as witchcraft, and a finely drawn description of modern Salem, MA. The style is uneven and I hated the pov but believe it was necessary to the plot.
Ignore the back blurb. It is totally misleading and probably the result of a lot of the more negative reviews this book received.
I can’t say much more than that really as the whole book is a series of clues for a mystery you weren’t trying to solve. A slow starter, but intriguing if you can stick with it – and remember the pace is set not by the author but by Towner’s (the MCs) journey of self discovery.
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 29 Mar 2010, 08:39

Oh - meant to say it's not a keeper so shout if you want it. :wave:
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby Jove » 29 Mar 2010, 12:58

Gill...did you just skip ahead to book 29? And why are you reading? You should be WRITING.
You must be the change you want to see in the world. ~ Mahatma Gandhi
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby gill » 29 Mar 2010, 15:30

Oh dearie me - did I miscount, it must be all this moving to a lovely new forum... :thinking:
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Re: gill -50 books - never gonna happen

Postby deej » 30 Mar 2010, 00:07

rofl rofl rofl Go Gill, I wish i had thought of that.
Raise your hand if someone you know is alive today because you can't afford a hit man.
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