The Mad Kyoto Shoe Swapper and Other Short Stories from Japan

Title: The Mad Kyoto Shoe Swapper and other Short Stories from Japan Writer: Rebecca Otowa Publishing House: Tuttle Publishing Date of Publication: March 24th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Well, don’t. You’re a foreigner. You have to understand it’s not our business. We don’t interfere. It’s the Japanese way.’’ Thirteen exquisite stories written by an American…

Pride and Prejudice

Title: Pride and Prejudice Writer: Jane Austen Publishing House: Penguin Clothbound Classics Date of Publication: November 6th 2008  (first published January 28th 1813) Rating: 5 stars ‘’There is a stubbornness in me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others.’’ The greatness of what I consider to be Jane Austen’s finest…

Corazon Aquino (Little People, Big Dreams)

Title: Corazon Aquino (Little People, Big Dreams) Writer: Mª Isabel Sánchez Vegara, illustrated by Ginnie Hsu Publishing House: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books Date of Publication: August 4th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’One must be frank to be relevant.’’              Corazon Aquino Cory was born in the beautiful Philippines, the country of a Thousand Islands. She loved…

Ulysses

Title: Ulysses Writer: James Joyce Publishing House: Vintage Date of Publication: 1990 (first published February 2nd 1922) Rating: 5 stars “Every life is in many days, day after day. We walk through ourselves, meeting robbers, ghosts, giants, old men, young men, wives, widows, brothers-in-love, but always meeting ourselves.”  16 June 1904. Leopold Bloom wanders the…

It Would Be Night in Caracas

Title: It Would Be Night In Caracas Writer: Karina Sainz Borgo, translated by Elizabeth Bryer Publishing House: HarperCollins Date of Publication: October 15th 2019 (first published March 7th 2019) Rating: 5 stars *ANY political comments will be deleted. I do NOT discuss politics or religious or social issues with strangers. If you attempt to do…

The Mermaid and the Shoe

Title: The Mermaid and the Shoe Writer: K.G.Campbell Publishing House: Kids Can Press Date of Publication: April 1st 2014 Rating: 5 stars “Stop asking useless questions,” Calypso replied, “and be remarkable. Like the rest of us.” But Minnow doesn’t want to be “remarkable” like her forty – nine sisters, Neptune’s daughters. She doesn’t care for…

The Motorcycle Diaries: Notes on a Latin American Journey

Title: The Motorcycle Diaries: Notes on a Latin American Journey (Diarios de motocicleta: notas de viaje por América Latina) Writer: Ernesto ”Che” Guevara (translated by Aleida Guevara March) Publishing House: Ocean Press Date of Publication:  August 1st 2003  (first published October 1st 1992) Rating: 5 stars If you attempt ANY kind of political comments, the…

The Murder at the Vicarage

Title: Murder at the Vicarage Writer: Agatha Christie Publishing House: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers Date of Publication: September 1st 2006 (first published 1930) Rating: 5 stars “The young people think the old people are fools — but the old people know the young people are fools.” THIS!  In the tale that started it all,…

The Luminaries

Title: The Luminaries Writer: Eleanor Catton Publishing House: Granta Date of Publication: August 24th 2013 Rating: 5 stars “The clock had struck that late hour of twilight when all colours seem suddenly to lose their richness, and it was raining hard; though the cockled glass, the yard was bleached and fading. Inside, the spirit lamps…

Among the Mermaids

Title: Among the Mermaids Writer: Varla Ventura Publishing House: Weiser Books Date of Publication: July 1st 2013 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Since the first stories were told, the sea has been the folklore, myth and mystery in every corner of the earth, and the life-sustaining and life-threatening centre of every coastal culture. Its sheer vastness holds…

Phantom Encounters

Title: Phantom Encounters Writer: Janet P. Cave, Laura Foreman Publishing House: Time-Life Books Date of Publication: January 1st 1988  Rating: 5 stars ’ Or when the lawn Is pressed by unseen feet, and ghosts return Gently at twilight, gently go at dawn, The sad intangible who grieve and yearn;’’               To Walter de la Mare, T.S….

Historias de Aquí y de Allá

Title: Historias de Aquí y de Allá Writer: Luis Sepúlveda Publication Date: Otra Orilla Date of Publication: July 1st 2010 Rating: 5 stars ‘’I am the shadow of what we were, and while there is light we exist.’’                           Luis Sepúlveda One of the most important writers of our times returns to Chile after 14 years…

A Luminous Republic

Title: A Luminous Republic (original title: República luminosa) Writer: Andrés Barba (translated bu Lisa Dillman) Publishing House: Granta Books Date of Publication: June 4th 2020 (first published November 29th 2017) Rating: 5 stars ‘’When I’m asked about the thirty-two children who lost their lives in San Cristóbal, my reaction varies depending on the age of…

The Mirror and the Light

Title: The Mirror and the Light Writer: Hilary Mantel Publishing House: Fourth Estate Date of Publication: March 5th 2020 Rating: 5 stars “This is what life does for you in the end; it arranges a fight you can’t win.” Anne Boleyn, Catherine Howard, Anne of Cleves. Three women that amply demonstrate the saturnine, obsessive and…

Το Χαμόγελο της Εκάτης

Τίτλος:Το Χαμόγελο της Εκάτης Συγγραφέας: Λίτσα Ψαραύτη Εκδοτικός Οίκος: Πατάκης Ημερομηνία Έκδοσης: Μάιος 1996 (πρώτη έκδοση 1995) Rating: 5 stars ‘’11/7/1999” γράφει το δεύτερο φύλλο. ”Ημερομηνίες σε όλα τα βιβλία”, συνήθιζε να λέει η γιαγιά μου. ”Είναι τα βιβλία αυτά που σου θυμίζουν στιγμές και πράξεις κι ανθρώπους που περνούν”. Συνήθεια που κληρονόμησα, βεβαίως, βεβαίως….

Jamaica Inn

Title: Jamaica Inn Writer: Daphne du Maurier Publishing House: Little, Brown and Company Date of Publication: December 17th 2013 (first published 1936) Rating: 5 stars “Dead men tell no tales, Mary.” The story of Mary Wellan and her journey to the haunting, dark and fascinating Cornish cost. The tale of a land haunted by terrible…

Cards On The Table

Title: Cards on the Table Writer: Agatha Christie Publishing House: William Morrow Paperbacks Date of Publication: December 15th 2003 (first published November 2nd 1936) Rating: 5 stars “He played the part of the devil too successfully. But he was not the devil. Au fond, he was a stupid man. And so – he died.” “Because…

The Great Fortune (The Balkan Trilogy 1)

Title: The Great Fortune (The Balkan Trilogy 1) Writer: Olivia Manning Publishing House: Penguin Random House UK Date of Publication: July 30th 2020 (first published 1960) Rating: 4 stars ”A pine forest came down to the edge of the track: the light from the carriages rippled over the bordering trees. As she gazed out into…

People In The Room

Title: People In The Room (original title: Personas En La Sala) Writer: Norah Lange Publishing House: And Other Stories Date of Publication: August 9th 2018 (first published 1950) Rating: 5 stars ‘’To me, it always seemed unnecessary to watch a storm. This time, though, I had no chance to be angry because I forgot about…

Five Little Pigs

Title: Five Little Pigs Writer: Agatha Christie Publishing House: Berkley Date of Publication: December 15th 1985 (first published May 1942) Rating: 5 stars “One does not, you know, employ merely the muscles. I do not need to bend and measure the footprints and pick up the cigarette ends and examine the bent blades of grass. It…

Hamnet

Title: Hamnet Writer: Maggie O’Farrell Publishing House: Knopf Publishing Group Date of Publication: July 21st 2020 (first published March 31st 2020) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Then Judith is in a crowd. It is night- time, cold; the glow of lanterns punctuates the freezing dark. She thinks it is the Candlemas fair. She is in and also…

Τα Φαντάσματα του Γιορκ

Τίτλος: Τα Φαντάσματα του Γιορκ Συγγραφέας: Χριστόφορος Μηλιώνης Εκδοτικός Οίκος: Κέδρος Ημερομηνία Έκδοσης: 1999 Rating: 5 stars ’’Οταν πλησιάζουμε στο Γιορκ, οι ανταύγειες του ουρανού, ωχρές, φωτίζουν ακόμα την πύλη του, τα μεσαιωνικά κάστρα, τα γοτθικά καμπαναριά και τους πύργους.  […] Όμως, καθώς διαβαίνω τη γέφυρα, πάνω από το ποτάμι, κι ύστερα τη μεσαιωνική πόλη,…

Reputations

Title: Reputations Writer:  Juan Gabriel Vásquez (translated by Anna McLean) Publishing House: Riverhead Books Date of Publication: September 20th 2016 (first published April 2013) Rating: 5 stars “The memory has a marvellous capacity to remember the forgotten, its existence and its stalking, and thus allow us to stay alert when we don’t want to forget and…

Midsummer Nights: Tales From the Opera

Title: Midsummer Nights: Tales from the Opera Writer: Various edited by Jeanette Winterson Publishing House: Riverrun Date of Publication: April 18th 2019  (first published January 1st 2009) Rating: 4 stars ‘’When we read, when we listen to music, when we immerse ourselves in the flow of an opera, we go underneath the surface of life….

Circe

Title: Circe Writer: Madeline Miller Publishing House: Bloomsbury Publishing UK Date of Publication: April 19th 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Odysseus, son of Laertes, the great traveller, prince of wiles and tricks and a thousand ways. He showed me his scars, and in return he let me pretend that I had none.’’ Greek Mythology has an…

Hauntings

Title: Hauntings Writer: Edited by Time – Life Books Publishing House: Time – Life Books Date of Publication:  January 1st 1989 Rating: 5 stars What is a ghost? A tormented soul that has left unfinished business on the world of the living? A soul who cannot find rest because of great wrath, pain, and a…

Nasla’s Dream

Title: Nasla’s Dream Writer: Cécile Roumiguière, illustrated by Simone Rea Publishing House: Princeton Architectural Press Date of Publication:September 15th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ”Nasla wants to sing, but at night, you do not sing. At night, you sleep. But what if the yellow dot grows and grows? What if it becomes big enough to swallow…

The Rain Heron

Title: The Rain Heron Writer: Robbie Arnott Publishing House: Atlantic Books Date of Publication: July 2nd 2020 Rating: 5 stars ”But more curious than this was what they saw next: a huge heron, the colour of rain, suddenly emerging from the flood in a fast, steep flight, leaving not even a ripple on the water…

Παραμύθια από το Περού

Title: Παραμύθια από το Περού Writer: Translated by Γιώργος Γούτας Publishing House: Aπόπειρα Date of Publication: Σεπτέμβριος 2007 Rating: 5 stars * My review in English is hiding below * ‘’Λένε ακόμα πως σαν κάποιος διαβεί τη νύχτα από τα περίχωρα της αινιγματικής Κορικότσα, ακούει κραυγές ανθρώπων, γαβγίσματα σκυλιών, μέχρι και κελαηδίσματα πουλιών, που φαίνεται…

If You Were Night

Title: If You Were Night Writer: Mượn Thị Văn , illustrated by Kelly Pousette Publishing House: Kids Can Press Date of Publication: September 1st 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’If you saw the moon Tiptoe past your window, What would you do? Would you nestle under the covers  Or step outside, too?’’ There is something mysterious and…

The Mercies

Title: The Mercies Writer: Kiran Millwood Hargrave Publishing House: Picador Date of Publication: February 6th 2020  Rating: 4 stars ”The storm comes in like a finger snap. That’s how they’ll speak in the months and years after, when it stops being only an ache behind their eyes and crushing at the base of their throats….

Wilma Rudolph

(Little People, Big Dreams) Title: Wilma Rudolph (Little People, Big Dreams) Writer: Mª Isabel Sánchez Vegara, illustrated by  Amelia Flower Publishing House: Frances Lincoln Children’s Books Date of Publication: June 4th 2019 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this…

At Bertram’s Hotel

Title: At Bertram’s Hotel Writer: Agatha Christie Publishing House: Harper Date of Publication: 2002 (first published 1965)\ Rating: 5 stars ‘’The children of Lucifer are often beautiful.’’ Hotels are fascinating places. Well, they can be quite a nightmare if you’re careless while booking or if the residents are a bunch of barbarians (which is often…

Things We Say In The Dark

Title: Things We Say In The Dark Writer: Kirsty Logan Publishing House: Harvill Secker Date of Publication: October 3rd 2019 Rating: 5 stars ‘’A house is family. A house is history. A house is a body. One subject that comes up again and again in horror, both new and classic, is houses. Haunted houses, home…

The Vanishing

Title: The Vanishing Writer: Sophia Tobin Publishing House: Simon Schuster UK Date of Publication: June 5th 2018 (first published January 12th 2017) Rating: 4 stars ” Everything was still; no rain, only the touch of wind as I walked, with the occasional call of birds in the desolation. I looked at the reddish bracken; the…

Summerwater

Title: Summerwater Writer: Sarah Moss Publishing House: Picador Date of Publication: August 20th 2020 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Dawn. There’s no sunrise, no birdsong. Light seeps over the water, through the branches. The sky is lying on the loch, filling the trees, heavy in the spaces between the pine needles, settling between blades of grass and…

Thank you, Miyuki

Title: Thank you, Miyuki Writer: Roxanne Marie Galliez, Seng Soun Ratanavanh (Illustrations) Publishing House: Princeton Architectural Press Date of Publication: September 1st 2020 Rating: 5 stars ”Miyuki, look at the water. Not the flow. Not the twigs floating by. Only the water in front of your eyes.” Our beloved Miyuki is curious about meditation and her grandpa is always…

Man With A Seagull On His Head

Title: Man With A Seagull On His Head Writer: Harriet Paige Publishing House: Biblioasis Date of Publication:  February 2017 Rating: 5 stars ”The fibrous contents of her shop – so much wool and linen and cotton – seemed a dry and tangled trap around her. But here was a face that opened up a space above her head that was…

One of the most horrible ”books” I’ve ever read…

I don’t want a ‘’fictionalized’’ account. I don’t want the POV of a Nazi. I don’t want a ludicrous fictional character -whose only thought is SEX SEX SEX!!!! – that has nothing to do with the actual regiment. I don’t want a boy’s wet dream about these heroic women who sacrificed everything for freedom. I…

Birdsong

Title: Birdsong Writer: Sebastian Faulks Publishing House: Vintage International Date of Publication: June 2nd 1997 (first published September 27th 1993) Rating: 5 stars “But you must live your own life eventually. You have one chance only.” A poetic, heart-breaking novel, about the atrocities of war and the hope that springs even under the most harrowing circumstances. Sebastian Faulks…

Mouthful of Birds

Title: Mouthful of Birds (original title Pajaros en la Boca) Writer: Samantha Schweblin, translated by Megan McDowell Publishing House: Riverhead Books Date of Publication: September 7th 2010 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Calderón, on the other hand, stands motionless. He can’t bring himself to lift his foot from the one he has killed. He is, perhaps, afraid of recognizing his girl’s…

Tales of the Peculiar

Title: Tales of the Peculiar Writer: Ransom Riggs Publishing House: Dutton Books Date of Publication:September 3rd 2016 Rating: 5 stars A marvellous addition to the wonderful universe of the Peculiar Children and their surroundings, created by Ransom Riggs and every bit as interesting and special as Miss Peregrine’s Series. No. It’s even better. You won’t find our familiar…