Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Last Runaway - Tracy Chevalier

Well usually my post title would be a reference to books, from the book I am reviewing... However I am so out of practice (and go so sucked into this story) that I completely forgot to keep an eye out for one!

I love Tracy Chevalier, and have read everything she has published thus far. I can't stand it though, that every time she brings something new out, it is compared to The Girl With A Pearl Earring.

She has written many others that are just as good, if not better. Most recently I thoroughly enjoyed Remarkable Creatures. If you are a fan of historical fiction, then take a gander at  The Virgin Blue, The Lady and the Unicorn and Burning Bright (which was good, but it didn't have the same pull and strong characters as some of the others)

The Last Runaway was yet another intriguing, immersing and unique view of people, places and events in history.

Set in the 1950's, it follows the story of Honor Bright, a Quaker from England, who travels to America. Along the way, a series of events see her involved with some colourful characters, as well as the underground railway movement, helping to get runaway slaves across the border from America into Canada.

There were some moments where I found the main character a little too rightious and tedious, however the supporting characters were strong and saw me through.

Like all of Chevalier's novel's, this story that had me looking for more information, I wanted to know about Quakers, slavery in America, and with all the quilting going on, it had me snuggling further under one of the patchwork quilts my Mum had made.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

I doubt if he had read twenty books in his life - (Pg 9)

Danny the Champion of the World, is yet another Roald Dahl I had not read. It is a lovely story. Filled with the usual wit and humour that Dahl wields so well.

The love between parent and child just leaps off the page and I thoroughly enjoy the warm, small, but rich world that the main characters inhabit.

I think this kind of story is best read aloud. I certainly found myself laughing out loud while reading it! I cannot wait to share this, and the entire collection of Roald Dahl classics with my two sons.

1 Day Remaining, 0 Books To Go! Whooo! By the skin of my teeth ;o)

Saturday, December 15, 2012

She would pile stacks of books everywhere - (Pg 323)

Bride Flight by Marike van der Pol is an epic sweeping tale! It focuses on the lives of three very different women who immigrate from Denmark to New Zealand in 1953.

I was drawn in by this story and the characters. There is a lot to this book, however I do feel a little disappointed with how everything unfolds. There are strong characters here that seem to change, however in essence, everything pretty much stays the same.

It was originally written in Dutch so you can never be sure of the translation, however I doubt it would've strayed much from the original text.

My one turn off with this story, was the descent into Mills and Boon sexcapades!

It wasn't so moving that it made me cry or laugh out loud. Although it did make me thankful for what I have. Overall I was pleased to be able to finish (and balance) a 450 odd paged book whilst breastfeeding, and being wholly sleep deprived!

A film was made based on this book, I look forward to seeing how it has been interpreted.

16 Days Remaining, 1 Book To Go!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

I read him 'The Night Before Christmas' in French - (Pg 105)

The Nanny Diaries by Nicola Kraus & Emma McLaughlin was recommended to me by a friend. It starts out interestingly enough and is actually quite funny until you realise there are people actually like this and it isn't all tongue in cheek.

It becomes very confusing as to why a supposedly intelligent woman would continue to nanny for such highly strung and extremely rude people.

She put herself into the situation and can quite easily get out of it. Her relationship with the child is the supposed reason why she doesn't leave, however that relationship doesn't come across as terribly strong.

Do not read if you are easily frustrated by stupid people!

74 Days Remaining, 2 Books To Go

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

My eyes still ache if I read or write much - (Pg 113)

Going Solo by Roald Dahl picks up where Boy left off. It is quite a different set of tales I can tell you.

In Boy, there are a lot of characters and situations where you can see Dahl has drawn from later to write his magnificent children's fiction. Going Solo however is much more 'grown up' and the stories, while unbelievable, are not the types of things that make good children's fiction.

I for one am amazed that Roald Dahl survived the situations he faced and was able to escape the war with his life, let alone come back from what he saw and the situations he faced and write such wonderful stories.

An easy and very interesting read, you must read it for yourself.

75 Days Remaining, 3 Books To Go

Sunday, October 7, 2012

And I began to write a book called Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - (Pg 149)

It shouldn't be that I have reached the age I have and not have read Boy by Roald Dahl. Dahl is by far one of my favourite authors. When I was a child his books were a pure joy, as they still are today.

I bought my son a set of Dahl books for his First Birthday. A little premature I grant you, but I wanted to get him a book he would keep forever and then I just couldn't possibly choose between all of Dahl's great stories.

So it came to be that this set of books has been looking at me every night at bedtime for my son and I decided to right a grievous wrong by borrowing Boy from this collection and finally reading it.

It is of little wonder that Dahl has been able to write just amazing fantastical stories, as his life has been filled with characters and situations as you might only find in a Dahl novel. Boy is a wonderful account of a handful of childhood incidents and memories and is just a lovely read.

Highly reccomended to anyone who was ever a child, and loved it!

85 Days Remaining, 4 Books To Go

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Joesph had taken a liking to reading and eating - (Pg 94)

The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender was an interesting read. I would describe it as whimsical, however it was also a little melancholy, so I don't know if it can really be classed as whimsical.

A story about a young girl, Rose, who discovers she can tastes the emotions and feelings of the people in the food that they make. Her brother also has an interesting hidden talent that I won't divulge here.

The characters are relateable and the setting is nice. It was a mystery story in a way. Not the most amazing story I have ever read, but enjoyable, interesting and different to anything I have read in a while.

93 Days Remaining, 5 Books To Go