Profile for Ms. Sv Lewis-morgan > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Ms. Sv Lewis-m...
Top Reviewer Ranking: 4,173,624
Helpful Votes: 35

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Ms. Sv Lewis-morgan "Ex-pat English bookworm" (Thueringia, Germany)
(REAL NAME)   

Show:  
Page: 1
pixel
The Devil's Star: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 3)
The Devil's Star: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 3)
by Jo Nesbo
Edition: Mass Market Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nesbo is addictive, 7 May 2009
I read Nemesis first, liked it so much I bought The Redbreast and, having read those two in reverse order, couldn't wait to get The Devil's Star. Nesbo manages to combine in this book an ecellent crime novel with winding up to nail-biting effect the thread that runs through the first two books. I couldn't put it down. It's best to read the three books in the correct sequence, but they all stand on their own too. A great main character, believably flawed, a suitably nasty villain, plenty of action and superb writing make this book one of the best I have read in a long time. I have recently discovered two wonderful Scandinavian writers (Stieg Larsson, who sadly died after writing his trilogy, being the other) and would add them both to my very short list of authors I would buy in hardback because I can't wait for the paperback. If you like thrillers and crime novels, read this book - but try and read the other two first.


Scarpetta (Scarpetta Novels)
Scarpetta (Scarpetta Novels)
by Patricia Cornwell
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £17.96

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Jury's Still Out, 29 Jan 2009
I've read every Scarpetta book and was an avid fan for years. Then she started to go off the boil a bit - I agree with some other readers' comments about the excesses of paranoia and the fact that Lucy and Marino can be highly annoying characters - and I started to wonder whether to bother buying the next offering. Frankly, after the last one I had decided not to. So I read this solely because it was a present, otherwise I wouldn't have missed reading it.

My first question if I were ever to meet Ms Cornwell would be: why change from the first person to the third? Is it because she wants to distance herself from her main character? Or to focus more on the actions of others (in which case it would be perfectly possible to switch narrative voices as she wished)? Because it changed Scarpetta's character somehow. In this book, Scarpetta is often described (as caring, in particular) but rarely does the portrayal of the character show her as much more than one-dimensional. However, as more than one other reader commented, the book does pick up pace and improve substantially around two thirds of the way through - which is a long time to wait and plenty of time to frustrate a reader into putting the book down for good long before that point.

I won't go into the plot (other have done so anyway, and I don't like to spoil it for those who do want to read it), but if this book were taken in isolation - which would make some of the ongoing relationships between the main characters a little difficult to follow although enough explanation is given in the text to follow things - then it's not a bad book. I did guess whodunnit fairly early, which is not a bad thing as the author is at least giving the readers a fair chance with enough clues to work things out for themselves. Because I can't say it's bad I have decided on three stars. But the author who pioneered the genre of forensic thrillers has, in my opinion, been knocked off the top slot that the reviews on the blurb say is hers. I'd far rather read Kathy Reichs nowadays: her main protagonist comes across as a far more rounded person than Scarpetta.

Will I read another Scarpetta? Probably, but I won't rush to buy it in hardback.


A Year in the Scheisse: Getting to Know the Germans
A Year in the Scheisse: Getting to Know the Germans
by Roger Boyes
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable book, 21 April 2008
Firstly, I have to say that my German partner and I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, and it made us both laugh all the way through. BUT (and this is the reason I give it one star fewer than I would otherwise have done), the subtitle (as with the original title of the German edition) is a trifle misleading in that it suggests that the book is about the author's experiences in learning about Germany, Germans, the German way of life - it's not. It is a snapshot of the experiences (fictionalised or not - I suspect a large part of it might be) of someone who has lived in this country for a long time, is obviously fluent in the language and is familiar in the ways of his adopted country. So it does miss a lot of opportunities to introduce plenty of characteristics that the author by now takes for granted. However, having had my little moan, I would still recommend the book to anyone who wants a good light read.


No! I Don't Want to Join a Bookclub
No! I Don't Want to Join a Bookclub
by Virginia Ironside
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.19

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best read I've had in ages, 12 April 2008
I can't find enough superlatives to describe my opinion of this book. It's extremely funny - rare I laugh out loud at a book, but I did here - and poignant at the same time - I shed a tear or two as well. I'm a little younger than the protagonist, but oh, do I know where she's coming from. A wonderful narrative with some startlingly witty non-sequiters. I only wish the book were twice as long.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 18, 2009 10:20 AM BST


Under Orders
Under Orders
by Dick Francis
Edition: Paperback

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Francis has gone off the boil, 25 Feb 2008
This review is from: Under Orders (Paperback)
For many years I looked forward eagerly to the year's Dick Francis book. They were always good, stirring stuff. So I was keen to read his latest offering - but I wish I hadn't bothered. There was obviously a good plot in there somewhere, but the writing was laboured and poorly edited. I was hugely disappointed that one of my favourite authors should churn out something so poor.


A Chateau of One's Own: Restoration Misadventures in France
A Chateau of One's Own: Restoration Misadventures in France
by Sam Juneau
Edition: Paperback

4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A disappointing book, 27 Oct 2007
I read this book partly because I am embarking on a somewhat similar project elsewhere in Europe. However, I found the book poorly edited, the writing full of repetition and bad punctuation and the author unlikeable. (He may be a lovely person really, but I didn't warm to him through his writing, and how could he burden his poor children with those names??) I didn't laugh once, despite the promises on the cover.


Watching the English: The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour
Watching the English: The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour
by Kate Fox
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth reading, 13 Oct 2007
I found this book both entertaining and informative: I know several non-English people living in England who say they wish they had read the book when they first arrived in the country as it would have explained a lot of things to them from the outset.

While agreeing with some criticisms, for example there is too much emphasis at times on class differences and research does seem to have stopped at Watford (I spent a number of years commuting by train into Manchester, and people in the north do speak to each other on trains), in general the observations ring very true. Living in Germany, as I now do, I have cited the book to people sometimes to explain why I find some German traits difficult to understand!

And to the person who criticised the use of apostrophes - the "Rules Rule" is correct in the context used (sorry. Being English I need to apologise for pointing this out).


Lean Mean Thirteen
Lean Mean Thirteen
by Janet Evanovich
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Still a good laugh, 25 Aug 2007
This review is from: Lean Mean Thirteen (Hardcover)
Having read all the Stephanie Plum books, I think I'd be disappointed if her car survived the entire book intact! Yes, it's pretty predictable, yes there's a lot of the same old same old, but there was enough to make me laugh out loud (the taxidermist and the exploding beavers for example) and it was still a good light read. I wouldn't expect anything deadly serious from Ms Evanovitch (even from the body count) and even if there could be some more character development I enjoyed this book thoroughly.


White Teeth
White Teeth
by Zadie Smith
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.29

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I've been bitten, 11 Jun 2007
This review is from: White Teeth (Paperback)
This book sat on my shelf for ages (as another reviewer commented) before I picked it up due to having nothing else to read. The cover didn't appeal, and the hype was off-putting. But from page 1 I was hooked by the individual style of the author. I found some of the characterisation a bit shallow and perhaps sometimes the style forced its way above the plot rather too obviously, but the uniqueness kept me reading right to the end. In the final pages she answered some questions that were almost forgotten to provide a neat ending and I thoroughly enjoyed the book despite my minor quibbles.


Page: 1