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The Horse Dancer
The Horse Dancer
by Jojo Moyes
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.27

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Unusual and well told story but left me feeling unsatisfied., 12 Jun 2011
This review is from: The Horse Dancer (Paperback)
Having read The Last Letter from your Lover by the same author and absolutely loving it, I rushed out to buy The Horse Dancer. It is a very unusual topic and as I am not a horsey person I was a bit concerned that this would not be my cup of tea. However this is not a problem as you grow to love Boo the Horse and he is as much one of the characters as the humans in it. All the characters are so well described in the book that I was able to picture them vividly and have empathy for all their situations. I have a daughter who is a similar age to Sarah in the book and this made it all the more enjoyable for me.

My main criticisms are that the first half of the book is a real page turner and I read it very quickly but it gets to a point, that without wanting to give the story away, feels sluggish and drags on a bit too long. This frustrated me as it had so much promise. I found the ending frustrating and a bit too sugary and unrealistic. It will not however put me off reading more of her books.

The Legacy
The Legacy
by Katherine Webb
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.59

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A story that keeps you guessing all the way, 6 Jun 2011
This review is from: The Legacy (Paperback)
The blurb on the reverse of this book made me think twice about picking it up - but I am glad I did. There is a current trend in writing novels for using a double - or even triple - time period -running throughout - and this is also the case here. I found both storylines, of two different generations of the same family, as fascinating as each other. The two tales intertwined perfectly making you want to return to the past and present each time. The opening chapter entices you in to the plot and keeps you wondering as you read. I did sometimes find her descriptive passages a little forced, but for a first published novel it was better this way than to find a lack of explanation - especially when imagining a time period that we are not familiar with in America. The ending for me was perfect - many novels leave you feeling wanting as they can be either too predictable - aimed at satisfying the reader with an all too quickly tied up ending - or leave you wanting more. This final chapter was more real to how a true life situation might end. Was tempted to give it 5 but I think the wordiness of some descriptions stopped me - but this is me being a little harsh. Give it a go!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 17, 2011 7:15 AM BST

The Last Letter from Your Lover
The Last Letter from Your Lover
by Jojo Moyes
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.11

30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved this book, 23 April 2011
I won't go in to the story of this book as it is so beautiful the enjoyment must come from reading it yourself.

The romance of the storyline set in the sixties is written so well that I felt I was transported back to the era. The main characters were believable and inspiring - it is romantic but realistic.

I could not put it down and will certainly be buying more of her books.

My only criticism is that, for me, the end felt slightly rushed - but there is a great twist - 9/10.

Find Chaffy
Find Chaffy
by Jamie Smart
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 23 April 2011
This review is from: Find Chaffy (Paperback)
My five year old son absolutely adores this book. He has looked at it so many times since he got it - probably several times a day. I would recommend for any children that love looking for things because even when you have found all the chaffys (would also keep an adult brain trained) you can search for many other things.

It makes such a change from the usual animal bed time story books which my son is not interested in - I think boys prefer factual or puzzle books and this adds another dimension to bedtime. brilliant.

Please can we have more chaffy books!

The Marriage Delusion: The Fraud of the Rings?
The Marriage Delusion: The Fraud of the Rings?
by Mike Buchanan
Edition: Hardcover

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Marriage Delusion, 30 Jun 2010
I would seriously recommend readers of both genders to read this book. Firstly it is always interesting reading about relationships from a man's point of view, because as the author rightly points out, there is little out there by men that give an honest account. Mr Buchanan has clearly spent a great deal of time reading up on his subject and the book contains (I would say mostly) extracts from other books/newspaper articles/studies. As my husband reluctantly discusses anything to do with relationships, particularly ours, it is encouraging that there are (plenty of it would seem) men that are interested in the subject. Many of the books contributors are men.
I chose this book, interested by that fact that it was about marriage and didn't have the title "why men dot dot dot and women don't dot dot dot"! Also because it was challenging the fact that marriage should exist at all in the modern world.
Having finished the book today, I am left with the feeling that the author chose his extracts largely to support his theory about the reasons marriage is increasingly failing and divorce rates increasing. Many of the reasons are valid but I am not left feeling entirely convinced.
For example he talks about marriages that fail and those that succeed and the reasons for both often being compared. However he does not really touch on the fact that within many marriages there are good times and bad times. MArriages are either set for failure or not seems to be the general consensus. Divorce rates have been rising since the 60s yes, but that is a comparatively short time in the history of marriage. Personally I feel that in the short time divorce has become easier we have not yet seen the effects of / or much research in to people who have divorced only to regret it later. He also does not touch very much on children and how many people's lives are made worse by divorce because of the effect it has on them.
This book was written because the author wanted to explore why his own two marriages failed and why divorce is increasing. His argument that introverted men are unhappier in marriage is interesting and yet he claims that extraverted people are more likely to be adulturous - surely a situation that increases (or results from) unhappiness in a marriage?
The book is sceptical(obviously from the title) about life time marriage commitment. I am divorced and have remarried with children from both marriages (statiscally I am therefore more likely than first time marrieds to divorce again). This book has made me really appreciate what my husband and I do have rather than highlight what we don't have and I feel rather sad that so many people lose physical passion and are not able to maintain willpower to save their marriages. Selfishness - something that is not really mentioned in the book but seems to come through from between the pages - is one reason I personally would suggest.
On a massive positive - a very thought provoking book which I could not put down and has really helped me understand how men including my husband think and feel. He deserves more slack from me, more freedom and more gratitude. I have put loads of pencil marks in the margin so I can pick it up any time I want to look at those issues that are particularly relevant to us.

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