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A. Jones (South Africa)

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Love Rehab: A Novel in Twelve Steps
Love Rehab: A Novel in Twelve Steps
Price: £7.52

2.0 out of 5 stars A bit of an obvious chick lit novel, 11 Sep 2013
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Nice idea to apply the 12 steps to getting over a break up but actually trivialises a lot of the deep issues with being an addict. One character gets over being an alcoholic just by applying some self control. The love interest is a male sponsor (which wouldn't be allowed) and the overall story is trite. I've read better


The Cuckoo's Calling (Cormoran Strike Book 1)
The Cuckoo's Calling (Cormoran Strike Book 1)
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A fun, fast paced thriller, 11 Sep 2013
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Really enjoyed this. The characters are engaging, the plot turns often enough to keep ahead of you and it's spreads a little magic glitter on London itself. If you enjoyed One for the Money then you'll love this.


Wolf Hall (Thomas Cromwell Trilogy Book 1)
Wolf Hall (Thomas Cromwell Trilogy Book 1)
Price: £4.23

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Takes AGES to get into but then is excellent, 11 Sep 2013
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I finished this on my 3rd attempt. It's very slow to get going but once I got 1/4 of the way in (and yes it's a HUGE book) I really enjoyed it. The main thing is to realise that when HM writes "he" she always means Thomas Cromwell, once you have that you're off and running. There is so much detail and presumably Tudor in-jokes that it makes you wish you knew the era inside out and HM doesn't always carry you on the journey with her. Dare I say that The Other Boleyn Girl did that better and with more pace. That aside it was very absorbing and has totally inspired me to look again at the Tudor period, check out some Hans Holbeins and definitely read the next one.


Gone Girl
Gone Girl
Price: £0.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An smart, pacey thriller, 11 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Gone Girl (Kindle Edition)
I loved this book. It keeps twisting and turning and definitely stays one step ahead of you. It manipulates your loyalties between the two characters back and forth and the ending is a good surprise!


30-Something and Over It: What Happens When You Wake Up and Don't Want to Go to Work . . . Ever Again
30-Something and Over It: What Happens When You Wake Up and Don't Want to Go to Work . . . Ever Again
Price: £3.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, 11 Sep 2013
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A quick read, totally on the money and great conclusions at the end. Worth every penny. Also worth reading some of Martha Beck's essays as a compliment to thinking around how you can use trial and error to make quite dramatic changes in how you feel about your life.


Life After Life
Life After Life
Price: £3.49

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly readable, moving and thought provoking, 18 July 2013
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This review is from: Life After Life (Kindle Edition)
I have resisted reading any Kate Atkinson for many years even though I know she's great. I picked out Life after Life as it seemed a fascinating concept and I'm very glad I did. The book is beautifully crafted and each story pulls you in, from a rarefied childhood to abuse of women, the insidious growth of fascism, the true horrors of The "Jolly" Blitz and the ups and down of family life. Wonderful!


City Girl
City Girl

4.0 out of 5 stars Light weight but great fun, 19 Jun 2013
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This review is from: City Girl (Kindle Edition)
Thoroughly enjoyed this book, a flash back to the chick lit novels I used to read in the late 90s. A nice beach holiday indulgence.


The Great African Society: A Plan for a Nation Gone Astray
The Great African Society: A Plan for a Nation Gone Astray
Price: £12.02

4.0 out of 5 stars Dense read but highly thought provoking, 19 Jun 2013
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Biko's book provides a deep dive into the challenges facing South Africa today, where political freedom has been achieved but, he argues, economic freedoms has not. Taking what he sees as the main areas of contention, he provides a detailed background of the context of the challenge, e.g. Education, and the his proposed solutions to the
problem.

As an expat living in SA, I found the historical sections of this book very enlightening and Biko's suggestions in many (but not all) areas make a lot of sense. My only complaint would be this is a very dense book. It would benefit from better structuring and focus, you end up with a long shopping list of things to do rather than say 2-3 themes you could realistically use to galvanise a country around to drive change.

I'd love to see this as a TED talk as I think the 15 minute format would force the author to creat more clarity around the central messages of the book and greatly help in getting his manifesto across.


Cloud Atlas
Cloud Atlas
Price: £5.98

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Persist, persist and you will love this book, 19 Jun 2013
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This review is from: Cloud Atlas (Kindle Edition)
I have tried to read Cloud Atlas 3 times and after a friend told me to stick out the first 50 pages I finally got completely hooked. So my biggest piece of advice is stick with it.

So why did I love this book (apologies for all the "s coming). You'll see from other reviews that this is a Russian doll of stories climbing up and then down through time. I had hoped for more connections through the stories (and that the book would be "cleverer" than it actually is) but the link through is pretty simple. However, what you come away with is a highly thought provoking view of how "civilised" man has abused and enslaved "savage" man all through time; with the "savages" sometimes aware of the enslavement and sometimes not. It also reflects on how the motivation for this enslavement is not "civilised" man's " natural superiority" but it's all consuming hunger for resources (money, fame). The book then explores how this desire could play out long term if left to go unchecked. Once I read it I saw parallels everywhere from our colonialist past to the current inequity we see in the US/UK and the underbelly of "second class citizens" (formal or informal) we have everywhere in today's society.

This book has stayed with me and I highly recommend it.


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