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Grant Wray (Watford, UK)

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You Don't Have To Be Evil To Work Here, But It Helps
You Don't Have To Be Evil To Work Here, But It Helps
by Tom Holt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Obvious plot. In need of better editorial., 21 Oct. 2011
An easy read, but very confused. I'd worked out most of the plot outline within the first quarter of the book, but there were so many loose ends it just spoiled the whole thing. There was the second tree in the factory - the first tree, nicely explained, the second really jarred as 'Oscar' should have twigged straight away what was going on. The there was the constantly changing shops - no explanation. And the auditor's final party - again, no explanation.
Sorry, Tom, but this really could have done with a lot more editorial work on it.


The Whole Day Through
The Whole Day Through
by Patrick Gale
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Direct and engaging but with ambiguities., 21 Oct. 2011
This review is from: The Whole Day Through (Paperback)
A deceptively short and simple read, uncluttered and direct. A world-weary tone pervades the entire novel, emanating from the two principle characters, Laura and Ben. The only truly frantic moment comes near the end and is the result of a well meant yet potentially disastrous act by Ben's brother, Bobby. I was left wondering if Bobby had been written as Down's syndrome purely to enable this one act to occur as naturally as it did. Certainly at the end I was sympathetic with Ben's situation, having been there myself, but I was somewhat disappointed with the weakness shown by Laura who simply, graciously and humbly accepted yet another train wreck of a relationship, doubly that she had emphatically stated that she'd already been there, done that and wouldn't do it again. All the characters were, in the end, revealed to be emotionally retarded except for Bobby. A lack-luster, unsatisfying ending with no hint of why Ben made the choice he did. Believe me when I say he'll be suffering for his actions. Ambiguity is something that excites the human brain, supposedly, but the many possible scenarios, Chloe falling pregnant, Ben losing his bottle, Chloe threatening to wreck Ben's life in a divorce, the parents interfering, just fail to materialize or even be hinted at.


The Other Hand
The Other Hand
by Chris Cleave
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.19

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing. Powerful., 21 Oct. 2011
This review is from: The Other Hand (Paperback)
How can one sum this book up without giving too much away? Well, it's the best book I've read in a long time. What makes it so much more powerful than other books I've been reading is that it's mostly set in England. It brings it home and has made me think a lot about things that happen in my own country and for my own country; that however carefully one tries to move through the world, your footfall will crush the life out of something, somewhere. How much loss are you prepared to accept? How far away does the hurting have to be before you don't notice it?

Read it. That's the best thing I can say.


May Contain Traces Of Magic
May Contain Traces Of Magic
by Tom Holt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The usual Tom Holt fare., 21 Oct. 2011
A quick read, but that might be down to my having trouble putting it down. It's the usual Tom Holt fare, this world with a parallel other world of magic and Gods stamped on top of it. I'm still not clear about the DW6, though, which is a shame. I have another of his books, Expecting Someone Taller? which I got many years ago.


A Mother Like Alex: One Defiant Woman. Nine Special Children.
A Mother Like Alex: One Defiant Woman. Nine Special Children.
by Bernard Clark
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting biopic., 21 Oct. 2011
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An interesting biopic with dubious accuracy in parts. The stories of these children are nowhere near finished, and I trust that this work will be updated and revised as time goes on.
I don't generally read biographies, but I'm close to these people so I thought I would see if anything was recorded that I didn't already know.

The way the language was used was deliberate. I understand that this can be unhelpful in perpetuating a prejudiced vocabulary, but underlying Alex's story is Bernard Clark's own journey from what might be seen as the society norm (it certainly seemed that society was that way in the late 80s when Alex and Bernard first met) towards his being accepted as almost part of her family. Many reviewers here failed to pick up on that aspect of the work; I found it slightly galling, but once you understand that the author is also telling his tale it becomes part of it. The lack of attention to the more common experience of families during the early days of being gifted with a DS child is purely an artefact of the fact that Alex's children were all adopted for a variety of reasons, and this book is not about the usual experience.


The Memory Keeper's Daughter
The Memory Keeper's Daughter
by Kim Edwards
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.74

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Difficult subject, handled well., 21 Oct. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A detailed, shocking and heart rending story of guilt, childhood, love and betrayal. One can understand the character's motives clearly, even if one disagrees with them, and one feels a rising anger towards some of them because one knows that these things happened all too often. The conflict between love and truthfulness is laid bare, raw and ugly. A difficult subject to tackle and one handled well.


The Other Half Lives (Culver Valley Crime)
The Other Half Lives (Culver Valley Crime)
by Sophie Hannah
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Confusing., 21 Oct. 2011
This work was thoroughly confusing, with more twists and turns than Turning Lane, the most winding road in the whole of Twistyshire. The locations for the action are engaging and accurate and the characters have enough hidden depth to be believable, just. The motivations are slightly incredulous, but not absurd. An enjoyable read.


MYSTERY WRITER, THE
MYSTERY WRITER, THE
by Jessica Mann
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Confusing., 21 Oct. 2011
This review is from: MYSTERY WRITER, THE (Paperback)
A difficult book to get into, with a confusing array a characters and interpersonal relationships. It's not until you reach half-way into the novel that you being to see where the story is headed at all. Then you realise that your initial suspicion was completely correct after all and all you can do is sit back and let the colourful web of peripheral characters resolve their individual stories. Reasonably well written, but I was left feeling that I wouldn't be scouring the library looking for more of her works.


Obsessed
Obsessed
by Devon Scott
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Soft porn, 21 Oct. 2011
This review is from: Obsessed (Paperback)
Well, it's basically a soft porn slash thriller for boys. There's no allusion that it's anything else than that. Graphic descriptions of sexual encounters, interspersed with unnecessary and bizarre levels of detail concerning how many cc's a main character's car engine has and how many processing cores in the villain's computer. I almost gave up on the book a few times, but I had nothing else to read. I think I'll be sticking to Jodi Picoult in future.


Doctor Who: K9 Tales Box Set (Invisible Enemy/K9 and Co) [DVD]
Doctor Who: K9 Tales Box Set (Invisible Enemy/K9 and Co) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Elisabeth Sladen
Price: £11.40

5.0 out of 5 stars Silly!, 21 Oct. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this for Invisible Enemy, so I was glad to get K9 & Co. as well, which I'd never seen due to a breakdown at Winter Hill transmitter when it was first broadcast. The K9 & Co. story is just plain silly, but very enjoyable, and it's good to see Liz.


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