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Joanna Cannon (Ashbourne, Derbyshire)
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Me Before You
Me Before You
Price: £3.32

30 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Rare And Beautiful Story, 24 Jan 2012
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This review is from: Me Before You (Kindle Edition)
Sometimes, you meet someone who's read a book that you have read, and you have an instant, unspoken connection. You have both sobbed and raged and laughed at the same things, and you have both travelled on the same journey. These books are quite rare, but Me Before You is one of them. It's a beautifully written story, with such perfectly drawn characters, you will miss their company long after the book is finished.

I love this book so much, I want to march people to the checkout with it, because I know they will adore it as much as I did. And they will perhaps think a little more deeply about the society we live in and the choices we make.

What more could you want from a story?
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 23, 2012 7:51 PM BST


When God was a Rabbit
When God was a Rabbit
by Sarah Winman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.09

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Letting Go, 21 Jan 2012
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This review is from: When God was a Rabbit (Paperback)
I loved this story.

I loved the narrator. I loved her humour and her observations, and the way her life was described with such clever brush strokes, so much could be said in so few words. The fact that the book is both shocking and humorous shows the incredible skill of the author. There were times when I laughed out loud and yet, on the next page, I would ache with sadness for Elly and Jenny Penny.

This is a beautiful story. It's a story of childhood and coming of age, but these intimate moments of growing up are set against a backdrop of world events, which only adds to their fragility. There are many different shades and themes but, above all, I think it's a story about letting go. It's about loss (of childhood, of innocence and of the people we love) and about how we move on when we lose the one thing to us which is most precious. By the end of the story, I was so wrapped in the characters, I almost couldn't bear to let go myself.

Stunning.


Write a Great Synopsis - An Expert Guide
Write a Great Synopsis - An Expert Guide
Price: £3.99

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sharp, Funny and Essential, 18 Jan 2012
Write A Great Synopsis is essential for anyone who wants to give their novel the best possible chance of success. Unlike many of the 'how to' books, it's sharp and funny and a complete pleasure to read. Before this book, I was at a total loss as to how to even begin constructing a synopsis. Now, I feel as if I've been given the magic spell of synopses-writing and I wonder what on earth I was so worried about in the first place. Nicola Morgan's book will literally give you step-by-step guidance that will take your wandering thoughts and turn them into a clean, sharp, polished piece.

Not just recommended, but essential.


The Look of Love
The Look of Love
Price: £3.59

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Clever, witty and brilliant., 17 Jan 2012
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This review is from: The Look of Love (Kindle Edition)
I love Judy Astley's books. Her writing is sharp, witty and full of the most wonderful observations, and The Look of Love was a joy to read. It pulled me from my own life and made me laugh (a lot). At one point, I had to stop reading, just to get all the laughing out (I won't give away any spoilers, but watch out for 'egg'). If you're looking for a funny, romantic story, with pitch-perfect dialogue, you will definitely find it here, but you will also find something else. You'll find a book which shows that three generations of women can all have a romantic story to tell, you'll find an older heroine you'll absolutely adore (hooray for Shirley) and you'll find the underlying message that, no matter what your age, you're always too young for a 'beige bungalow'.

Brilliant. I loved it.


The Coward's Tale
The Coward's Tale
Price: £5.03

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect, 12 Jan 2012
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This review is from: The Coward's Tale (Kindle Edition)
I think this has to be one of the most complete books I have ever read.

The language is so exquisite, the characters so rich and the descriptions so painfully beautiful, I had to stop for a few minutes after each chapter, just to prolong the joy of reading it. The story has humour and poignancy and incredible depth, and the most flawless ending to a story I think I have ever seen.

Reviews normally include a summary of the plot and observations on the writing style, but I can do none of these things with The Coward's Tale. It's far too perfect to slice and analyse, I can only suggest you begin reading it. You will fall in love from the very first page.


Mondays are Red
Mondays are Red
Price: £2.69

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Power of Language, 8 Jan 2012
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This review is from: Mondays are Red (Kindle Edition)
Mondays Are Red should really be read twice.

It should be read the first time to be entertained by the plot and the characters and the story itself, but it should also be read a second time, just to enjoy the words. They deserve a reading all to themselves.

I won't elaborate on the story, as there are other reviews which have explained it beautifully, but I do think that Mondays Are Red is about change. It's about how we might feel if we woke one day and saw the world differently, and how we would deal with the challenge of an entirely different view. It's also about the power of language, and reading the story has really made me question the self-imposed filter we place on the world, created purely through our own choice of words.

Mondays Are Red is classed as young adult fiction (which, of course, it is), but it's really a book for anyone who enjoys language. Luke's descriptions of his new view of the world are just magical and will stop you in the middle of a paragraph, just to savour them.

And if you're anything like me, it will make you ever-so-slightly jealous of anyone with synaesthesia.


The Long Second (The Cole Trilogy, Part 1)
The Long Second (The Cole Trilogy, Part 1)
Price: £1.98

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Many Reasons I Love This Book, 7 Jan 2012
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If you're looking for an absorbing, cleverly-written, well crafted story, you have found it right here in The Long Second.

The main character, Tony, has such a believable, clear voice and you hear it right from the very first page. It's down to the writing skill of Marshall Buckley that you not only start to care about Tony, but also about each member of his ever-so-slightly dysfunctional family.

I love lots of things about this book. I love that Tony is just an ordinary guy. I love that you try to solve the puzzle of his new found lifestyle along with him. I love that the writing is so clever, you feel as though Tony is sitting opposite you and having a really good chat. But most of all, I love that The Long Second isn't published by a big-name publisher. I love that it's written by someone who clearly had a great story to tell and just wanted to share it with other people. I love that you can buy The Long Second just as easily as you can buy Booker Prize winners and Galaxy short-listeds and the novels of well-known authors.

And I love that The Long Second can sit alongside the winners and the short-listeds and the well-known authors, and I love that it looks not a fraction out of place.

I love it so much, I'm just about to order the sequel ...


Before I Go To Sleep
Before I Go To Sleep
Price: £3.29

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Read to Remember, 4 Jan 2012
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I always feel a little guilty when I read a book in just a few hours.

The skill and sheer hard work it must have taken to write such a wonderful story as this, it seems a little insulting to finish it in one sitting, but I just couldn't help myself. Before I Go To Sleep is so well crafted, so beautifully paced and so incredibly well written, I couldn't return to my own life until I'd discovered the truth about Christine's. I hesitate to give even a drop of the plot away, because it would deprive a reader of the most wonderful twists and turns, but the first person narrative and the clever structure of the story will pull you into Christine's life from the very first page.

The very best books not only present you with a fabulous story, but they also stretch your mind. Before I Go To Sleep will make you think about the links between memory and identity. It will make you question if we are defined only by our memories, whether we can exist without the ability to remember, and if who we really are is actually based on who we have already been.

A truly brilliant read. Don't miss out.


Perfect People
Perfect People
Price: £3.59

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not To Be Missed ..., 10 Nov 2011
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This review is from: Perfect People (Kindle Edition)
The rest of my life was put on pause whilst I read Perfect People. Whenever reality tried to claim me back, Peter James opened another door in his story and I was so transfixed, there was no choice but to walk through it.

The skill and care of the author meant that I felt immediate empathy for the main characters. I was carried with them on a dark and often terrifying journey, and Peter James' incredible talent as a story teller meant that I was constantly questioning my own beliefs and responses to the ethical dilemmas placed before me.

The meticulous research involved in writing this story is just breath-taking. The plot is clever and sharp and the characters instant and real. If you are looking for a book which pulls you in from the very first page and a story which will both entertain and broaden your thoughts, I am delighted to say that you've found it right here.

An absolutely superb read.


Hurry Up and Wait
Hurry Up and Wait

5.0 out of 5 stars Memories Are Made of This, 5 Sep 2011
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This review is from: Hurry Up and Wait (Kindle Edition)
Once again, Isabel Ashdown takes us effortlessly into another time and place with this wonderful tale of friendship and betrayal. Hurry Up And Wait is a beautifully constructed story which is filled with characters everyone will recognise from their own schooldays. Being the same age as the main character, the mid nineteen-eighties really came back to life as I read, with exquisite details reminding me just how much I'd forgotten. Isabel Ashdown writes with such skill and paints her characters so perfectly, their lives and their story will stay with you long after the last page has been read.


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