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Francine Pefko (London)

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Back of Beyond
Back of Beyond
by C. J. Box
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.52

3.0 out of 5 stars Pretty standard, 9 April 2014
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This review is from: Back of Beyond (Paperback)
This was the first book I read by C.J. Box. It was a fairly standard crime thriller with a cop protagonist who doesn't play by the rules, only set in Yellowstone Park. It was easy to read and I enjoyed it. I'd read another book by the same author.


The Good Fairies of New York
The Good Fairies of New York
by Martin Millar
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.39

2.0 out of 5 stars A silly mess, 5 Nov 2013
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I read this book for my book club, so I had to read it all the way through. If that wasn't the case, I think I would have given up early on. Although to be fair, it isn't something I would normally choose anyway.

I found the book hard to get into. It wasn't difficult to read, it just failed to grab me at any point.

The plot was a bit of a mess, lots of things going on and lots of characters to keep track of who didn't really have any purpose in the story. The narrative jumped back and forward incessantly. I gave up on some of the subplots because I just couldn't remember who these characters were or what was supposed to be going on. Luckily it didn't really make much difference.

Occasionally something tickled me, but there wasn't enough of this to call it funny. More accurately it was all just a bit silly.

I don't think I'd read anything else by the author.


Hot Cakes
Hot Cakes
Price: 13.20

5.0 out of 5 stars Great album, 30 Aug 2013
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This review is from: Hot Cakes (Audio CD)
On the first listen it was good but nothing really stood out. But now I have heard it a few times, I really love it. Many of the songs are so catchy I have had them stuck in my head for days at a time, in particular "With a woman" "Forbidden Love" and "Pat Pong Ladies" from the extended version. I love the Radiohead cover too, and I am fan of them. Plus some of the lyrics are hilarious as you would expect from The Darkness.


Pukka Organic Morning Time 20 Teabags (Pack of 4, Total 80 Teabags)
Pukka Organic Morning Time 20 Teabags (Pack of 4, Total 80 Teabags)
Price: 8.58

4.0 out of 5 stars Really tasty tea, 30 Aug 2013
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I find this tea very tasty. I can't say more than that really!
I bought a box once on holiday and when I ran out I was pleased to discover I could replenish my stocks on Amazon.

Very nice and great for caffeine avoiders.


Life Expectancy
Life Expectancy
by Dean Koontz
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.24

4.0 out of 5 stars Fun read, 30 Aug 2013
This review is from: Life Expectancy (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book. The characters were really great and funny and warm.
The story is obviously a fantasy, so to say it was far-fetched would be stating the obvious a little, but there were a few bits in the plot where it got a bit silly.
Still, I really enjoyed it and would recommend it. I missed it once I had finished.


Rush of Blood
Rush of Blood
by Mark Billingham
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.43

2.0 out of 5 stars A page turner, but quite a shallow one, 1 Aug 2013
This review is from: Rush of Blood (Paperback)
This was an odd book. I found it very easy to read and it is definitely a page turner. The story draws you in and I wanted to find out what had happened. Especially the second half of the book.
However, the characters were distinctly unlikeable. I guess this is what the author was going for, but I just found it annoying that he seemed so desperate to make them into caricatures. Mentions of their musical tastes, what their houses were like, what they watched on the television, seemed to be laid on thick just to make it clear they were a certain types of people. I got tired of constant cultural references and specifics. And I didn't feel any sympathy or compassion for any of them.

I found the book to be pretty shallow and the ending was predictable. Although I felt this was inevitable, to me the author seemed to paint himself into a corner where you were bound to be unsurprised by the ending.

This was the first Mark Billingham book I read, having heard him recommended. Based on this alone I probably wouldn't read any more of his, although other reviews say it is different to his usual style, so I might try one more.


The Sisters Brothers
The Sisters Brothers
by Patrick deWitt
Edition: Paperback
Price: 3.86

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I expected too much, 3 Sep 2012
This review is from: The Sisters Brothers (Paperback)
I was eager to read this book after I saw an episode of "The TV Book Club" where they raved about it. In addition to this, there are an impressive number of five star reviews on here.

I was a bit disappointed to be honest. I quite liked the writing and the setting of the novel. There were a few lines where I chuckled at the dry humour. The characters were interesting enough.

I just didn't feel that the story led me anywhere and I didn't feel gripped at any point. I didn't miss the book when I wasn't reading it, and it left my mind as soon as I had finished.


Odd Thomas (Odd Thomas 1)
Odd Thomas (Odd Thomas 1)
by Dean Koontz
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Really enjoyed it, 24 April 2012
This is the first Dean Koontz book I have read and I really enjoyed it. I have already ordered the next book in this series.
I liked the characters a lot, the writing was quirky and humorous, and the story was gripping. I miss it now that I have finished reading it. Although I am still a little cross with the author for the ending, which caught me by surprise even though it probably shouldn't have.
Recommended!


Life of Pi
Life of Pi
by Yann Martel
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars A story of three parts, 20 Feb 2012
This review is from: Life of Pi (Paperback)
The Life of Pi is a book with three parts, all quite distinct from each other.
I struggled to get into the first part. I liked bits of it, sometimes funny, sometimes informative. But as an atheist I found the protagonist's religious ramblings somewhat tedious.
I am glad I didn't give up though, as I really loved part two. I read it all in one day, completely engrossed in it. For me, the book would have been better if it had just been part two.
Part three was a terrible let down. I was curious to find out what happened next, but after reading it I wish the author had left it out completely.
I can't say much more without spoilers.
Despite my dislike of part three and ambivalence about part one, I give The Life of Pi four stars. I am glad I read it, and I would still recommend it to anyone.


Bleed For Me
Bleed For Me
by Michael Robotham
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.02

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good solid crime thriller, 1 Sep 2011
This review is from: Bleed For Me (Paperback)
I haven't read all the other Michael Robotham books and I'm not sure whether this makes much difference. I think it can be read as a stand alone novel. Although other reviewers seem to suggest this one is not as good as his others. In that case I will definitely try to read some of his other books now. I thought it was a good gripping read.
The story was complex enough to keep me interested and guessing. I had a theory about who had committed the murder, but I wasn't right.
I thought the writing was good and I liked the characters. I found it very easy to read and wanted to keep reading to find out what happened.
I haven't given it five stars because I'm not sure I will remember much about it in a few months time. I don't think it is a book that I will keep thinking about or want to re-read time and again.
I will recommend it though to my friends and family though.


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