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After Adlestrop
After Adlestrop
Price: 1.95

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An original and extremely well-imagined story, 3 July 2012
This review is from: After Adlestrop (Kindle Edition)
The whole concept of After Adlestrop is original and extremely well-imagined. It is inspired by the poem by Edward Thomas, about a deserted English country railway platform in 1914. In this novel someone does alight from the train, a young woman. We follow Diana Dumont from 1914 to her death aged 90. As she writes: 'I ran away from home when I was seventeen. I lived through two world wars. I was loved by and loved two wonderful men, one of whose children I bore. I was loved by and loved a wonderful woman. I have killed two men.'
This is a charming story, the characters engage the reader and the narrative maintains momentum throughout. It is graced with Edwardian expressions which give flavour but are not overdone. The story never flags.
My one criticism is that 50,000 words is short for a novel. I would have liked the narrative to slow down in places, with more description and conversation. Another 20,000 words would have done nicely - which is testament to Davies' powers as a writer.


Poppy Day
Poppy Day
by Amanda Prowse
Edition: Paperback

16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A truly emotionally wise book, 14 Dec 2011
This review is from: Poppy Day (Paperback)
I read this remarkable book virtually in one sitting. Amanda Prowse shows great wisdom - emotional and spiritual - in the telling of this story. Her characters are convincing and the gripping tale is spiked with humour. But what I liked most of all was the close identification I felt from the moment the 'action' began. I was constantly being put into situations where I found myself asking 'what would I do here?' As though I was being taken on a journey. Without wanting to give too much away, I thought the best part of the book is that it does not end where a more conventional book might, but deals honestly with the very real issue of PTSD.


Entering the Circle: The Secrets of Ancient Siberian Wisdom Discovered by a Russian Psychiatrist
Entering the Circle: The Secrets of Ancient Siberian Wisdom Discovered by a Russian Psychiatrist
by Olga Kharitidi
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars through a glass darkly, 9 Oct 2011
I feel there are nuggets of real wisdom here, particularly linked to the practice of psychiatry and the human soul/mind. However, whatever wisdom Ms Kharitidi gleaned in the Altai is let down by the writing of this (obviously ghosted) book. Howling errors in the editing (such as 'Lev Gumilkev' instead of 'Lev Gumiliev') lead me to question the authenticity of the rest of the book. For me the book is at its most interesting where she describes her life and work in her Novosibirsk mental hospital and how her shamanic experiences influenced her work with her patients. I wish this had been developed further. I would have given the book fewer stars because it is really let down by the writing, however I was fascinated by it and felt that beneath all the poor and disjointed descriptions Ms Kharitidi had opened the door onto something I would like to explore further


A Carpet Ride to Khiva: Seven Years on the Silk Road
A Carpet Ride to Khiva: Seven Years on the Silk Road
by Christopher Aslan Alexander
Edition: Hardcover

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a travel classic, 26 Sep 2011
I bought A Carpet Ride to Khiva because I plan to make a trip to Uzbekistan next spring and wanted some background - and I was riveted. It is a brilliant, extremely well written book which succeeds in revealing Uzbek society through the microcosm of the carpet workshop. A lot of what Alexander describes about the corruption etc is horribly familiar to me, as I lived in Russia in the 1990s.
I also found A Carpet Ride a very sensitive and compassionate book, in its portrayal of the locals and their lives. Unlike so many of today's travel writers ("look at me, what a wild time I'm having amongst these funny foreigners") Alexander keeps himself firmly in the background. I found myself actually wanting more personal detail. I loved his mother's friendship with the Afghan general. I was fascinated (and horrified) by the male conversations about women and sex, to which, as a female, I would not be privy.
A classic.


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