Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

February Books, 2018.

I have had a lot of reading time this month and read all these ones I had from the library.

David Hanson- Children of the Mill- this book was written to accompany the TV programme The Mill based on the true stories of the children who worked in The Quarry Bank Mill at Styall. The book compares the real stories to the ones that were changed for the purposes of a good drama. It was a fascinating yet easy book to read. I really enjoyed it.

David Ebershoff- The 19th Wife- A story of two 19th wives. Ann Eliza Young trapped in an unhappy polygamous marriage to the Prophet Brigham Young, escapes and helps end the practice of polygamy within the Mormon religion. The second modern 19th wife is accused of the muder of her husband, they are part of a breakaway religion from the Mormons known as the Firsts. Her son sets about finding the truth. This was a jolly good read. Now I read this in quite a short space of time over several afternoons.  There are a lot of characters each telling their bit of two stories, and the two parts are interlinked throughout. So choose a time when you can settle down to just reading. Perfect holiday reading. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I agree with one of the reviews on the back “A big book, in every sense of the word…it does that thing, all good novels do: it entertains us”. Los Angles Times.

Toni Morrison- God Help the Child- how do you prepare a child for life’s slings and arrows? How can an adult overcome emotional abuse experienced as a child? How can children cope with bereavement? How do children survive sexual and physical abuse? What happens to the adults? God Help the Child indeed. Well written, thought provoking, distressing in places. Not for those in want of a fluffy read.

Ian McEwan- The Comfort of Strangers- or adults should think stranger danger too. Set in Venice, probably we are never told, a couple meet a local couple and are befriended. Enough said. There is such a feel of menace in this book, it draws you in and you race to the end. Absolotuely not for the faint hearted.

Kate Hamer- The Girl in the Red Coat- now did someone recommend this to me or did I hear about it on the radio, I don’t know. But by golly it grips you. Every parents nightmare, child disappears at a story telling festival. A very, very good thriller. Oh perfect holiday  reading , you are gripped. I read pretty much non stop to find out what happens. Go on, treat yourself to a good read, you know you want to….

Joanna Trollope-Second Honeymoon- as always a plot in step with our times. Edie is distraught when her youngest child, aged 22 moves out of the family home. She lacks purpose and mourns the empty nest. Russell her husband hopes they will return to the feeling of newly weds. Edie auditons for a part in Ibsen’s Ghost, and much to her surprise is offered a role. One of her co stars,  fresh out of drama school, becomes their lodger. Then her children’s lives fall apart and one by one they all return home. But having six adults under one roof does not equal happiness and a return to how life used to be. In the course of the novel everything is resolved through new jobs, new relationships, babies and greater understanding of what it means to be independent. Not a bad depiction of empty nest syndrome, and how life just goes its messy way on.

And for March I have these from the library

Now in case you think you have never heard of the book called Paul Clifford, I bet anything you have heard the opening line. What do you think it might be… honest you know it. I believe I may not actually get to the end of this one, I gather I will be in for some purple prose.

Any got any books they read this month to recommend?



Comments on: "February Books, 2018." (32)

  1. I read The Comfort of Strangers some years ago, I too found it tense and gripping.

    Falling Angels: I enjoyed as an easy read and felt Chevalier always seeks to educate, as well as entertain her readers. It’s been years since I read any of hers, I should see what she’s had published since.

  2. Ian McEwan – always brilliant. Have you seen the film? Definitely worthwhile 🙂

  3. How I miss a visit to the library and a load of books to read. Thank you for the great reminder. 🙂 Enjoy the books and the reading.

  4. I think I must prefer ‘fluffy’ reads. Though the book I am reading at present is Donna Leon’s latest “Earthly Remains” and they always have a darker side. This time is is about the decline of bees and damage to the environment, though I don’t find that as hard to read as child or elder abuse. I must read about the same amount as you as I tend to think that a book lasts about a week.

  5. I’m also impressed by the amount of books you get through. I am actually reading two books at once at the moment which I hate doing but I was already reading an ‘actual’ book but couldn’t get back to sleep one night and had to download one on my Kindle as Mr. T. was home and I didn’t want to disturb him by putting the bedside lamp on. I thought – if I can manage to keep track of two different t.v. series at one time, why can’t I do the same with books? I’ll let you know if I can or can’t when I finish them.

    • Oh yes please do! I can’t keep track of TV series… I like to watch them back to back or I forget who is who and what they are doing! I have a lot of trouble if the characters look too alike! better in the days when the goody and baddy cowboys wore different coloured hats so you knew who the goody was! My Dad was a big fan of cowboy films , although they were all black and white films.
      What am I babbling about…..

      • You could have Thursday ‘Book and Babble’ 🙂
        I finished one of the books today and now I can concentrate on the second one which also has a young woman in difficult family circumstances as the central character although she is in New York – the other was in York – ooer, even more confusing.

  6. I cannot read so fast. Your description of the books is very helpful. I looked at Toni Morrison’s book and decided I couldn’t go there. Too close to home for me. But several of the others sound like good candidates. I’ve read several that sound very good then go wayward on me. So I figure it best not to share them.

  7. Wow, these all look like they would be great!

  8. Thanks for the suggestions. I like Ian McEwan’s writing so may try that. 🙂

  9. Murtagh's Meadow said:

    I am always impressed with the amount you read. I picked up a Joanne Harris book from the library last week after you mentioned her in one of your previous posts. I haven’t read her for years but currently enjoying Peaches for Monsieur le Cure.

    • That one is a good read too, I really liked it. The benefit of being retired is you can just spend an afternoon reading, and you aren’t so tired at bedtime so you can read more then.

      • Murtagh's Meadow said:

        I always have to read when I get into bed – even if it is just for ten minutes!!

  10. I loved The 19th Wife, it’s a great story. As for that opening line, is it: “It was a dark and stormy night…”?

  11. I’m such a slow reader I’d be struggling to read one book in a month. Some of your chosen reads sound great. Thanks for the reviews.

  12. And every other book by Tracey Chevalier’s is worth reading…great to read that you are advocating borrowing library books.

    • As I volunteer at the library I try to borrow my books from there too, and encourage others to use their library. I have enjoyed the Tracey Chevalier books I have read so far, so am looking forward to this one.

  13. oooh! I love when you share your reads!

  14. You always make the books sound so interesting. The girl in the red coat is on our book group list – although the library don’t always give us everything we put on it, but fingers crossed. The Children of the Mill sounds especially interesting. And I’ll try to remember the 19th Wife for my holidays. Love a big book to read on the sun lounger. Thanks as always for the reviews 🙂

  15. oooh there are at least 4 in this review that have sparked my interest! My local Library is only tiny and books are in French (obviously) so gripping tales are not always as gripping when translated. I’ll have a search to see if any of the above have been translated though and I might be Lucky to find at least one. Failing that . . . a few clicks on amazon should be all it takes lol.

    • I hope you find some that you like, and where would we be without Amazon?

      • claire93 said:

        oh gosh, yes! my first reaction these days when I want to find out something: Google . . . and when I want to buy something: amazon lol.

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