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J. Gardiner
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Magic Molly Book 1 The Mirror Maze
Magic Molly Book 1 The Mirror Maze
Price: 0.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for kids, 23 Mar 2014
My nine year old daughter wrote the following:

"I loved reading 'Magic Molly: The Mirror Maze'. It was adventurous and funny. I really liked the nice and horrible characters. It was well-written and one of the best books I've read."

She immediately downloaded Book 2 and is now reading that.


Playing on Cotton Clouds
Playing on Cotton Clouds
by Michela O'Brien
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.50

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Realistic and powerful, 20 Dec 2013
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'Playing On Cotton Clouds' is a novel about real people. It explores relationships, friendships, marriage, and being a parent in a way that is thoroughly realistic and incredibly moving. The narrative moves on steadily through a number of decades following the fortunes and failures of a fascinating group of people. The book is never predictable; Michela O'Brien avoids stereotypes and obvious plot-lines - often preferring to explore more difficult experiences, with which so many of us can empathise. This is particularly so for the characters Aiden, Seth and Livy. The author manages to get into their heads, leaving us with something memorable and personally touching.


The Deep Secret
The Deep Secret
Price: 1.54

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An exciting read, 31 Oct 2013
This review is from: The Deep Secret (Kindle Edition)
I've become a big David Robinson fan after reading 'The Handshaker', and this, its sequel - 'The Deep Secret'. Whilst there are challenging moments in a book about a sexual predator and murderer - the author deals with them completely appropriately. The graphic moments make you, as a reader, demand that the killer be caught. The horror only serves to emphasise the wrongness of the crimes. Felix Croft is a great character: flawed and slightly arrogant - in the tradition of the best literary detectives. The narrative races from location to location following both the killer and Croft, who is helping the police. Croft's own story contains tragedy and pain, making him a wholly sympathetic figure. Read 'The Handshaker' and then this, and you are guaranteed many days of thrilling reading. Also recommended is David Robinson's 'Voices'.


Someday Never Comes
Someday Never Comes
by Frances Di Plino
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.22

5.0 out of 5 stars A challenging and compelling read, 29 Oct 2013
This review is from: Someday Never Comes (Paperback)
`Someday Never Comes' is the sequel to `Bad Moon Rising'; part 2 of the D.I. Paulo Storey detective series. I loved the first book and this sustains the same sense of tension and urgency. The themes are disturbing and horrific, but necessarily so. Child prostitution and the sex-slave trade cannot be dealt with lightly, but sadly are very real and tragic problems in our society that we need to face up to. Frances di Plino examines the subject with great skill and integrity, but never in a patronising or gratuitous way. She shows it how it is and has created a flawed and sympathetic detective to confront the horrors that we prefer to ignore. Just like `Bad Moon Rising' this is gritty, very well-crafted and utterly compelling.


Breath of Africa
Breath of Africa
by J L Bwye
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Memorable characters in an evocative setting, 25 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Breath of Africa (Paperback)
'Breath of Africa' is a book that allows the landscape of Kenya to shape the narrative. The mixture of childhood, growing into adulthood, love, political confusion and a sense of belonging permeates the novel with its evocative and realistic setting. The characters - especially Caroline, Charles and Mwangi - are complex and sometimes unpredictable, whose motivations and reactions to events and each other give the story its impetus. If you know Kenya or want to learn something of its recent history, or perhaps are looking for an intriguing story about human relationships, then grab a copy of 'Breath of Africa'.


The Handshaker
The Handshaker
by David Robinson
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark and challenging, 19 Aug 2013
This review is from: The Handshaker (Paperback)
Having enjoyed 'Voices' by the same author, I looked forward to reading 'The Handshaker' and it didn't disappoint. It's a hard-hitting murder-mystery with a fast-paced narrative that leaves you breathless. With its insight into hypnotism as a method of gaining power over others and some chapters from the point of view of the murderer himself - this is a dark and challenging read.

David W Robinson's novels are always carefully crafted and ingeniously plotted, and 'The Handshaker' twists, turns and keeps you guessing until the end.


The Film Club
The Film Club
by Daisy White
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great thriller for teens and adults alike, 1 July 2013
This review is from: The Film Club (Paperback)
Daisy White's YA novel 'The Film Club' is a story with twists and turns. Set in Brighton in the 1950s the feisty Susie B is a great character to follow - full of spirit and enthusiasm. Her optimism is never daunted by the dark events going on around her. She investigates strange goings-on in the film school she's been talent-spotted for, and the truth is darker than you might imagine. The story soon gets into fifth gear and keeps up a good pace. With its glossy and well-judged cover and a plot tumbling along at full-pelt you can't help but admire Susie B as she takes control in all situations: danger; glamour; love ...in fact anything she turns her hand to. An enjoyable read.


A Life Less Lost: My Son's Decision, But Will He Choose Life?
A Life Less Lost: My Son's Decision, But Will He Choose Life?
by KB Walker
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A moving true story, 3 Mar 2013
This is a moving and uplifting account of a mother retaining her hope and faith whilst her incredibly courageous son is diagnosed with cancer. If you have been through anything like this, then `A Life Less Lost' will be a source of comfort and inspiration to you.

K.B. Walker also communicates how her Christian faith has given her strength. She does this in a way which is profound and personal, without ever becoming judgemental, alienating or `preachy' She gets the balance just right. Reading this sensitive and powerful book, I feel amazed by what some people have to go through - and how those seemingly insurmountable obstacles faced in life can often strengthen rather than crush individuals.


Voices
Voices
by David Jr. Robinson
Edition: Paperback
Price: 8.88

5.0 out of 5 stars A thrilling read, 7 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Voices (Paperback)
'Voices' is highly recommended. It begins with a fantastic set-piece: a college canteen in blown-up in a seeming act of terrorism and we see the mayhem and reactions from one particular viewpoint. The novel then follows the after-effects and the intriguing mystery which gradually unfolds. The sightings and titular voices are well-handled without ever becoming corny or cliched. 'Voices' keeps you guessing and has a terrific pay-off. David Robinson isn't afraid to use slipstream techniques or flashbacks to uncover exposition bit by bit - and this works very well. The narrative voice is real and compelling too. Having read a few books by this author, I can say how much I enjoy his neat turn of phrase; his disciplined prose and lively characters. This was a joy to read.


Once Removed
Once Removed
by K. B. Walker
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Moving Read, 28 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Once Removed (Paperback)
'Once Removed' touches on a difficult subject with great insight and sensitivity. The novel brilliantly examines how children respond to being abused or exploited - in a range of ways - by selfish, ignorant adults, and then how it affects their self-esteem or even their self-value as an individual. We also get to see how some adults fail to cope with emotionally damaging memories from their own childhood. This is definitely a 'crossover' novel that teenagers and adults would benefit from reading.

With its dual first-person narrative, 'Once Removed' allows us into the mind of a young female teacher as well as that of a teenage girl. Both characters possess emotional depth. Abby is a compassionate soul with a genuine sense of vocation and developed sense of empathy, whose only real flaws are her own naivety and understandable insecurity. Beth is a teenager trying to make sense of a world dominated by uncaring and ignorant adults. Other characters also blaze across the pages: struggling parents; egotistic boyfriend; school bully; suspicious neighbours; plus a range of various 'bystanders' who could have done something, but stood back in denial.

As a teacher myself, I fully recognise the world, characters and situations depicted here. K.B. Walker has written an important novel which teachers, parents and teenagers need to read. 'Once Removed' is poignant, moving and challenging like great literature should be.


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