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Jill in East Kent

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The Writers' Conference
The Writers' Conference
Price: 3.12

5.0 out of 5 stars Good read, 8 Jun 2014
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I enjoyed this story very much. It's American so a few things puzzled me here and there but overall a good read.

Intrigue, suspense, some strong, well-drawn characters. Kept me happily engrossed.

Happy to recommend.


Faded Lives
Faded Lives
Price: 0.77

3.0 out of 5 stars 2.5 stars, 8 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Faded Lives (Kindle Edition)
The blurb sounded interesting, the reviews were 5 star. I was looking forward to this one.

But, it was slow and plodding. I struggled to read this. I persevered to over 35% (on Kindle) but really I couldn't carry on. Up until the point I read I couldn't find a story in this book. Guilty young man comes and stays with grandma - who at 84 is extremely sprightly - charging up and down loft ladders and driving and cooking, cooking, cooking. There are endless descriptions of meals. Personally, when I'm reading a novel I assume the characters eat and do all the other things we all do every day. I don't really appreciate knowing what they had for breakfast, lunch and dinner and what sort of casserole dish it is served in ...

The dialogue is clunky. "I will" not "I'll" and "I have" not "I've" and yes, there are times when we say "I have" but in general day to day chats between grandma and grandson it sounds weird and stilted.

Both grandma and grandson have dogs. Grandma's dog is mentioned, but by 35% (on Kindle) I think the dog had "appeared" once. Yet they talk about their respective dogs and compare notes about them. Would be nice if at least one of them was present in the story. Otherwise, why are they in there? Padding?

Sorry, but I had to give up. I couldn't see this one going anywhere.

But to be fair if the dogs and meals were edited out and the speech patterns rendered a bit more realistic it would be a much better read and maybe I would then have finished it.

I'm giving it 2.5 stars on the assumption that there is a story here - and I'm feeling generous. But, it needs work.


The Innocence of Roast Chicken
The Innocence of Roast Chicken
by Jo-Anne Richards
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Maybe 3.5 stars?, 20 May 2014
Really not sure about this one.

I enjoyed the "child" section - thought that was good and very descriptive. Thought the tension was well handled as, whilst reading those sections I wanted to know what was going to happen.

Found the "now" section slow and repetitive. I thought the main character was completely and utterly vile to her husband and he never complained ... I thought that was a bid odd to be honest.

(Not telling the story as don't want to introduce spoilers)


The Garden of Evening Mists
The Garden of Evening Mists
Price: 1.53

3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe 3.5 stars?, 20 May 2014
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Strange book. Most of us in our book group have now read this one and each time someone talks about it it's as if they are talking about a different book! Everyone seems to pick up on something different in the book. Generally it's liked.

I thought there were some lovely descriptions. Some interesting details about Japanese gardens, archery and tattoos.

I must admit though that I struggled with it. It wasn't a book to pull me into the story and it didn't have me rushing home from work anxious to know what happened next. The last quarter or so was the most gripping so I am glad I persevered to the end.

I could not like the main character at all. I couldn't understand her as I kept thinking she was a man. Reading it on the Kindle did not give me a picture of the author and I don't think I'd realised it was written by a man until I'd got through the first couple of chapters. Once I'd googled the writer it made sense. But I don't think he can write from inside a woman's mind can he?

I think I preferred Magnus and Emily ...

Overallm not a bad read but not one I will read again.


Burning Bright
Burning Bright
Price: 2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Well it's five stars from me!, 20 May 2014
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This review is from: Burning Bright (Kindle Edition)
Lovely book. Loved the characters. Loved the places, the job descriptions - the buttons, the chairs, the circus. A book to lose yourself in. Joyous!

I particularly liked the setting. I'm doing my family history and one bunch of my ancestors live a street away from Astley's Amphitheatre so reading about that part of London at that time made this book especially interesting for me.


Falling Angels
Falling Angels
Price: 3.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Glorious read, 20 May 2014
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This review is from: Falling Angels (Kindle Edition)
I loved this book and found it completely engrossing. I loved the characters - from the sensible intelligent Maude and the vain silly Lavinia through to Mother Coleman and Simon's dad the gravedigger. Great bunch of people and you feel that they are people and not made up characters. When I finished the book I was rather sad as I wanted to know what happened next.

Tracy Chevalier has a gift and I can't help but give this 5 stars. I totally recommend it.


The Marriage Certificate
The Marriage Certificate
Price: 2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed this one, 20 May 2014
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I read this when away on hols so it only took me a couple of days. I liked both the "then" story and the "now" story and thought the tension in each was very good.

If you're doing your family history and/or enjoy watching Heir Hunter and like a good mystery then this is a good book for you.

Yes there were a couple of errors - genealogical kind - and I spotted one or two typos but they didn't put me off.

Will look out for more by this author.


Rainbird's Revenge (A House for the Season)
Rainbird's Revenge (A House for the Season)
Price: 4.19

4.0 out of 5 stars Final one in the series, 11 May 2014
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Last book in the series and ends the whole thing nicely. Good fun. We finally find out if the servants live their dream and buy that pub!


The Adventuress (A House for the Season)
The Adventuress (A House for the Season)
Price: 4.19

4.0 out of 5 stars Another good one, 11 May 2014
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This one is back on course after the slight oddness of number four in the series.

Good read, easy read, enjoyable. Great books for holidays, lazy days, "recovering from a horrible virus" days.


Agatha Raisin: As The Pig Turns
Agatha Raisin: As The Pig Turns
Price: 4.46

2.0 out of 5 stars Ooh no., 11 May 2014
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What an odd one this was.

Agatha thinks a policeman would not have thought that a bent copper might buy an expensive car? I mean, she's not Mensa material herself is she - how insulting.

Supermarket lorries going to Europe to collect produce? Really? We are talking a small supermarket / supermarket chain. Don't they buy from local suppliers or order stuff in that is delivered to them or their depot - or is that something I just don't understand! It just struck me as really odd.

Anyway, the lorry goes from Mircester to Dover and is followed by Agatha plus a couple of her sidekicks. Presume M25 - M20? "He's taken the Dover Road .." - do you mean "He's turned onto the M20". then he turns off the Dover Road into a country lane ... what is that about? Are you just map reading again Ms Beaton? All very odd and definitely not the way I would have described that journey - but what do I know I only live in Kent!

Ends with new chap moving into the village and Aggie is off - chasing another dream.


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