The Dollmaker

Title: The Dollmaker Writer: Nina Allan Publishing House: Quercus Books Date of Publication: April 4th 2019 Rating: 5 stars ‘’In 21 cases there was death but no burial; in 10, funerals but no burials; in 8, funerals but no death.’’ Dolls never found a top spot in my favourite toys list. My mum didn’t like them at all but my…

Desire

Title: Desire: Vintage Minis Writer: Haruki Murakami (translated by Jay Rubin, Ted Goossen and Philip Gabriel Publishing House: Vintage Classics Date of Publication: June 8th 2017 Rating: 5 stars ”Which is to say that wrong choices can produce right results, and vice versa. I myself have adopted the position that, in fact, we never choose anything at all. Things happen….

When We Were Birds

Title: When We Were Birds Writer: Maria Mutch Publishing House: Simon & Schuster Canada Date of Publication: April 24th 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Snow falls on the shoulders of people passing, it lands on the pavement and vanishes, more lands and sticks.  She watches the crystals clump, tumble, and it is twilight and the lights of the restaurants and…

The Snakes

Title: The Snakes Writer: Sadie Jones Publishing House: Random House UK Date of Publication:March 7th 2019 Rating: 4 stars ‘’We were a family and now we’re not any more. We’re the wrong number. It’s all wrong. I can’t cry. I can’t.’’ The times we live in are uncertain, turbulent, obscure. Financial insecurity, fear caused by leaders who dream of…

The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories

Title: The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories Writer: Tim Burton Publishing House: Faber & Faber Date of Publication: October 4th 2018 (first published 1997) Rating: 5 stars ‘’The final gasp of his short life Was sickly with despair. Whoever thought that you could die From breathing outdoor air?’’ For most lovers of the 7th Art, Tim Burton…

Cala

Title: Cala Writer: Laura Legge Publishing House: Head of Zeus Date of Publication: March 7th 2019 Rating: 4 stars ‘’The four women of Cala sat in its dining room on the autumn equinox, wearing garlands of ash and hazel, visible to one another only by candlelight.’’ In a farmhouse somewhere in the Outer Hebrides, four women have decided to live…

A Cat, A Hat and a Piece of String

Title: A Cat, A Hat and A Piece Of String Writer: Joanne Harris Publishing House: Black Swan Date of Publication: January 16th 2014 (first published November 8th 2012) Rating: 4 stars ‘’I see now that there can be no leaving. I am a broken clock, frozen forever at an impossible hour. Let others move on, if they must, if they…

The White Book

Title: The White Book    (original title: 흰) Writer: Han Kang Publishing House: Granta Books Date of Publication: November 2nd 2017 (first published May 25th 2016) Rating: 5 stars ‘’I hold nothing dear. Not the place where I live, not the door I pass through every day, not even, damn it, my life.’’’ In the beautiful, mysterious world of…

Village of Stone

Title: Village of Stone (original title: 我心中的石头镇 ) Writer: Xiaolu Guo Publishing House: Vintage Date of Publication: January 31st 2012  (first published January 1st 2003) Rating: 5 stars ‘’But the Village of Stone- that tiny corner of the sea that, on a map of China, appears as nothing more than a deep blue stain, with no air or shipping routes to…

The Light In The Dark

Title: The Light In The Dark Writer: Horatio Clare Publishing House:  Elliott & Thompson Date of Publication: November 1st 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Winter in the mountains is arresting in its drama, the light melting over the Brecon Beacons as though it carries cold in it, not heat. There are the lakes of mist, too, the sun riding high…

Cornish Short Stories: A Collection of Contemporary Cornish Writing

Title: Cornish Short Stories: A Collection of Contemporary Cornish Writing Writer: Edited by Emma Timpany and Felicity Notley Publishing House: The History Press Date of Publication: April 2nd 2018 Rating: 4 stars ‘’It was an Indian summer. Everyone said so. She enjoyed the sound of the words. In her mind they conjured a burning orange sky over parched hillsides and…

Camouflage: The Hidden Lives of Autistic Women

Title: Camouflage: The Hidden Lives of Autistic Women Writer: Dr. Sarah Bargiela, illustrated by Sophie Standing Publishing House: Jessica Kingsley Publishers Date of Publication: February 21st 2019 Rating: 5 stars Studying any material related to autism should be mandatory for all teachers. Apart from the actual teaching of a specific subject, we must support our students, we must…

The Invention of Ana

Title: The Invention of Ana Writer: Mikkel Rosengaard (translated by  Caroline Waight) Publishing House: Custom House Date of Publication: February 13th 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’They never went hungry, but there was no electricity, and she remembered the long, dark evenings in the apartment, the afternoons when there was so little to do that she was reduced to padding at…

Race Me in a Lobster Suit

Title: Race Me in a Lobster Suit: Absurd Internet Ads and the Real Conversations that Followed Writer: Kelly Mahon Publishing House: Quirk Books Date of Publication:  March 26th 2019 Rating: 4 stars Many years ago in Greece, there was a superbly hilarious TV show, a political and social satire. One of my favourite sections in each episode was dedicated…

Ways To Hide In Winter

Title: Ways to Hide in Winter Writer: Sarah St.Vincent Publishing House: Melville House Date of Publication: November 6th 2018 Rating: 2 stars ‘’If this were the last thing you ever saw, would you be happy?’’ Kathleen, a young woman who lives with her ailing grandmother, has buried herself in a town hidden in the beautiful wilderness of Pennsylvania. In a…

Odette

Title: Odette Writer: Jessica Duchen Publishing House: Unbound Date of Publication: 29th November 2018 Ratings: 5 stars ‘’Now I talk but you don’t believe me.’’ My mother and I have a Christmas tradition that we try to follow religiously every year.  Both being avid lovers of ballet, we have associated Christmas with this beautiful form of Art. Usually,…

Christmas Days

Title: Christmas Days: 12 Stories and 12 Feasts for 12 Days Writer: Jeanette Winterson Publishing House: Random House UK Date of Publication: November 1st 2018 (first published November 2016) Rating: 5 stars It’s Jeanette Winterson, people. I could read her shopping list and still be a happy reader. In Christmas Days we have her impeccable style and stories about Christmas. What could…

Quiet Girl in a Noisy World

Title: Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert’s Story Writer: Debbie Tung Publishing House: Andrews McMeel Publishing Date of Publication: November 7th 2017 Rating: 5 stars Two weeks ago I read Book Love by Debbie Tung and I adored it. I couldn’t wait to read Quiet Girl in a Noisy World, a beautiful work of Art that…

The Sing of the Shore

Title: The Sing of the Shore Writer: Lucy Wood Publishing House: 4th Estate Date of Publication:  April 5th 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Winters are when people disappear. One minute you’re elbow on the street, the next you walk along sidestepping nothing but the wind. Cafes put down their blinds. Houses are locked and dark. The car parks slowly empty and…

Nocturnes

Title: Nocturnes Writer: Kazuo Ishiguro Publishing House: Faber and Faber Date of Publication: May 5th 2009 Rating: 5 stars ‘’So a moment like that comes as an unwelcome reminder of how quickly things change. How the bosom pals of today become lost strangers tomorrow, scattered across Europe, playing the Godfather theme or ‘Autumn Leaves’ in squares and cafes you’ll never…