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Reviews Written by
Mrs. E. M. Lauret "marti lauret" (Woodbridge, Suffolk U.K.)
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Eight Months on Ghazzah Street
Eight Months on Ghazzah Street
Price: £3.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars eight months on ghazza street, 28 Oct. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I never grasped before the dreadful story of women in Saudi Arabia. Sometimes it takes a good novel to make it real and immediate.


Baghdad Fixer
Baghdad Fixer
by Ilene Prusher
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent., 8 Aug. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Baghdad Fixer (Paperback)
Wonderful book. Full of deep understanding of Arab and American culture and how the two communicate (and don't!). The narrator/protagonist Nabil is a finely drawn character, and to tell the story from his point of view was brave and felt truthful. I was very impressed with this novel and was glad to be able to persuade my book group to read and discuss it. One member of our group pointed out that it worked better as a character and culture study than as a thriller. This was a fair point, but for me the book was all the better for not being a fast-action story.


The Rotten Romans (Horrible Histories)
The Rotten Romans (Horrible Histories)
by Terry Deary
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A great way to tease the grownups., 4 Jan. 2010
I sent "Rotten Romans" to my grandkids for Christmas. They are reading it out loud to their dad who is a grown up Roman history buff. Shouts of laughter all round.


Tchamantche
Tchamantche
Price: £13.56

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars rokia traore, 1 Mar. 2009
This review is from: Tchamantche (Audio CD)
I am not a "world music" fan - not usually.... But when I heard Rokia Traore singing on Radio 3's "Late Junction" I put down my book and listened. Then I got up and "googled" her name. Then I bought her latest album. Ever since then, I've been playing it for friends. I hope they like it. Because I do, more and more each time I hear it. It's one of those albums that bring you something new each time you listen.


Tombola
Tombola
by Rorie Smith
Edition: Paperback
Price: £2.56

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GET A MOVE ON!, 11 Mar. 2008
This review is from: Tombola (Paperback)
GET A MOVE ON!

Read "Tombola" right now. Read it as fast as you can. Swallowing it whole is the only way to take in this magical ride through dimensions of time, space, politics, globalism, media, revenge, friendship and wish fulfilment.

"Tombola" is the name of a newspaper owned by a tycoon who deserves to die before he destroys a football club that lies at the heart of an unnamed community in the north of England. His self-appointed assassin is the book's protagonist, Arthur Polianski whose own race against time is accelerated when he gets a death sentence from his doctor. "Tombola" is so crammed with clichés, and at the same time so unique, that if you pause for a moment's thought and consider whether the target of an assassin would always leave the same club ahead of his bodyguards at the same time each night, or whether "chuffing" is an effective substitute for the more common four-letter epithet, you'll be lost.

The book is filled with tales of friendship so intense and loyal that Arthur's numerous pals risk going to prison many times over for their roles in planning, training and executing his various crimes and in harbouring him when he's on the run. His uncomplaining wife Bangkok Rose never emerges as fully human but instead remains loyal to him in his supernaturally-aided travels across three continents, except of course when she is at the gaming tables. All the friends, in all of the countries described in tints ranging from the dingy grey of Murmansk to the stellar majesty of Moroccan desert nights, remain loyal to Arthur despite his lunatic rants when he vents his anger over life's injustices straight at them. He gets away with it. Always.

The central motif of "Tombola" is boyish wish-fulfilment. If only your enemies were really bad people through and through. If only you could shoot them down in cold blood and, unlike Billy Liar, really get away with it and have loads of weird and wondrous friends who start by calling you "mate" and end by calling you "boss" without any hint of resentment. If only your woman would never put her foot down when you did something daft, but would grumblingly follow you to the ends of the earth and watch vigilantly for your enemies at every turn. If only. But hey, what's life without wishes?

If you are in a book group, ask your group to read this book. They'll be arguing all evening, but most of them, like Bangkok Rose, will grudgingly admit in the end that Arthur is crazily, magically lovable. Twenty years from now, readers will still be debating whether this book is "literature" in the same way that twenty years ago they shouted at each other about whether the splashes of Jackson Pollock were "art". Arthur is its first-person narrator. It is him you'll want to throttle. It's Arthur who occupies a niche inside my inner child, and you'll find that he is in yours, too.

Don't dither, don't delay. Buy it. Open it. Gulp it down.


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