I have just given up on a book, something I try to avoid. But I just wanted something lighthearted and magical, to get me in the mood for Christmas and this wasn't it. When I saw The Gift by Cecelia Ahern, described as 'A seasonal tale of love and friendship', 'A heavenly gift that speaks to the heart', 'Heart-warming, emotional, funny and filled with unexpected twists', I thought, perfect! I was so wrong. I persevered until page 176 of 305 pages, but I was just getting so irritated with the main character that I just decided I could not read any more. I found the story was so full of anger, betrayal, deceit, sadness, that I was just feeling depressed rather than uplifted. It was very disappointing. It does bother me when the quotes from reviewers on the book covers don't reflect the content of the book. But I guess that is my opinion. Other people might like it. I think, for me, my favourite Christmas book is still A Redbird Christmas by Fannie Flagg. Now that has magic and kindness, and makes me feel good inside.You can read my original review here.
Those of you who know me will know that I am a HUGE fan of the Twilight series, written by Stephenie Meyer. Host is written for adults, whereas Twilight was aimed at teenagers, and i think that you can notice a difference. It has taken me a long time to consider reading Host, I guess, because I didn't want to be disappointed. Anyway, I finally succumbed and added it to my 3 for 2 purchases, and well, wow...I was very pleasantly surprised. It is different from the Twilight series and quite sci-fi, which is not my usual genre. However, it does tackle the related issue of inter-species relationships. I found it really thought-provoking and so imaginative as the author describes the populations on different planets, and the differences in emotions of each species. It was also very much a love story, and I really wondered how the author would work it out so that everyone would end up happy. The ending did not disappoint. I really recommend reading Host. It is unusual, a bit slow to start, but completely captivating.
I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the famous food writer and cook, Prue Leith, writes fictional novels too. Choral Society is about three women in their fifties who are going through different life challenges, and meet at a choir meeting. They are completely different from each other, but become great friends. It is a very empowering story, and good to read a book demonstrating that you don't have to have a man to be successful and that life doesn't end at 30. It was a good, easy read, and really interesting. I learnt so much about food-writing, and food photography. Made me want to have a go. Plus there was the bonus that the book was set in Yorkshire, Cotswolds, London and Cornwall, all wonderful places in England.
Seemingly appropriate for Halloween, but this was no treat for those involved. I have just finished reading Kathleen Kent's The Heretic's Daughter. I was in two minds when I bought it, because there have been so many stories about the Salem witch. However, this one has been written by a direct descendent of one of the accused. It was brilliantly written; so hard to read in places, because of the treatment of the accused women and men. The bravery of the children - their horrific treatment was so vividly described, I felt in awe of their survival skills. They never gave up, they plead their innocence. You just cannot fathom how human beings can treat each other so cruelly. It was a harsh, but excellent read, and has inspired me to find out more about this tragic event.
Thank you for visiting my blog. If you would like me to set up and run a personalised current awareness service or run a literature search, or for other information-related services, please contact me via my LinkedIn page (http://www.linkedin.com/pub/caroline-de-brun/5/807/342).
I have been a medical librarian since 1999, working in academic, primary and secondary care settings, service improvement, knowledge management, and on several national projects. I have set-up and run several current awareness services, including QIPP Alert (http://qippalert.blogspot.com), and I am currently working on a PhD about improving access to good quality health information. You can also access good quality health information from my other blog Patients on the Net (http://patientsonthenet.blogspot.com).