A Medieval Doom painting, an Anglo-Saxon saint, mythical creatures, a magpie, an historian, dead babies, the groaning sickness and a big old house. A fantastic gothic tale.
This is a story about accountability. The main focus is a giant, successful pharmaceutical company accused of contributing to the deaths of heroin addicts and a lawyer who specialises in defending corporate companies. Only, for this story, he becomes the prosecutor not the defender.
A light beach read for fans of romantic comedies.
A great layman's guide to the important Emperors who shaped the Roman Empire. As such, it's easy to flick to a particular emperor to learn about him, those around him, his influencers and what he did.
This is a raw and visceral account of a young man from his schooldays through his distressing experiences of drug abuse and war. Written in the first person as he thinks and speaks, the unnamed protagonist tells his tale with acceptance and dark humour.
⭐Publisher featured review.
A nostalgic read in more ways than one. First of all I hail from the city of Liverpool and the references to many of the places, such as Lime Street, the Liverpool Royal Infirmary and the Blue Coat School, as well as the statesmen who also came from the city, bring the comfort of recognition.
Immediately dropped into a world of cover-ups, espionage, mercenaries and dodgy goings-on with guns, threats and fights - I had to stop for breath before the story began.
A book about true crime and history all set around London's famous river.
This book was not what I was expecting, which was a powerful courtroom drama. Instead it is an average read that was published at the right time, when sexual assaults among rich famous people, including inside the British parliament, were exposed and spurred the spread of the #metoo movement.
Andrew Michael Hurley knows landscapes intimately. Forests, rivers, moorland as well as the weather that shapes them and the animals that live there. More than this, he can write about nature in all its brutal guises so much so that the reader feels it in their bones.
The appeal of this psychological thriller is really quite straight forward. An aspiring writer is stalked by a bookshop owner. Sounds like a fantasy to me, but this story definitely is not. Dark and disturbing.
Billed as a 'Heart-Warming Holiday Tale' ('holiday' in this instance means Christmas), I looked forward to some light reading over the festive period. And I loved the cover, which shows a steam engine in the snow. Lovely.
A nice festive read with a few gentle murders. A kind of reading version of Cluedo.
I wasn't long into this Man Booker Prize winning book of 2018, when I realised that it was set in 1970s Northern Ireland, probably Belfast. Although nothing is named, the place 'over the water' and the people who live 'over the road', who follow 'the other religion' was very reminiscent of The Troubles as I remember them. I was living in Liverpool, close to Northern Ireland, and I still have childhood memories of such terms as 'kneecapping', 'car bombs' and 'paramilitary'. And the more I read, the more my belief was reinforced.
An unusual take on the ghost story, where a successful rock star buys a ghost to add to his bizarre collection of occult and disturbing items. The ghost comes in a funereal suit packed in a heart shaped box. A great start to this debut novel by Joe Hill.
Sometimes dead is better. This is a frequently said comment by one of the central characters in this novel about coming to terms with loss.
My favourite film of all-time is, and has been since I first watched it as a child, Jason and the Argonauts. It probably was the catalyst for my love of Greek mythology. So it was with great anticipation that I read Circe, the second book written by Madeline Miller about the Ancient Greek gods.
This book appeals to the many thousands of voyeurs who love to watch ordinary people go about their mundane business while secretly hoping something interesting happens.
A novel set almost entirely on the North York Moors, with its dramatic landscape, rural life and conflict with change. This is the backdrop to the story of a disaffected teenager working on his family's farm.
Unashamedly influenced by Alfred Hitchcock films, this bestseller and debut novel reads like the script of the dark psychological thriller film it will become. It is easy to see why there have been over a million copies sold.
This was listed as the most influential book for male readers in a poll. I had not read it and therefore rectified this injustice recently.
A psychological thriller about a psychologist. That was the draw.
The title of this novel refers to perceptions of reality and the example given in the book explains it perfectly: like a broken mirror the reflection is real but distorted.
This book was chosen to coincide with my visit to Pompeii. I finished reading it as the wheels touched down at Luton Airport. And what a great read it was.
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