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Ms. L. J. Waldron (Bristol, United Kingdom)
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The Gravedigger's Daughter
The Gravedigger's Daughter
by Joyce Carol Oates
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.19

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Strange, somewhat really intriguing, 9 Jun 2008
I finished this book in a matter of days, not because it was so good I had to keep reading but because I felt it was leading up to a surprising spectacular ending. Unfortunately, I got my hopes up too high with this one!

The first half of the book sees the main character (Rebecca/Hazel) as a child, which I thought was perhaps the best written part of the book - it was very dark but on the other hand was, in my opinion, relatively well written.

I think it started to go downhill a bit as the main character got older. It's difficult to pin point bad and good points because ultimately I felt some parts of the book were very good, but some were dismissavely boring.

As I said before, the ending was a bit of a something of nothing. It could have been made a lot more exciting with a few twists in it. I think the most interesting characters were invented during Rebecca/Hazel's childhood but they were rarely mentioned again and could have been brought into her adulthood more than they were. I think that would have linked the book more together and bound it as a life-story.

I'm glad I read it, because i did enjoy it, however I probably wouldn't go out of my way to recommend it to a friend.


We Need To Talk About Kevin (Five Star Paperback)
We Need To Talk About Kevin (Five Star Paperback)
by Lionel Shriver
Edition: Paperback

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Stick with it, and it eventually grips you, 5 Jun 2008
I found this book relatively hard to start off with. I had to really force myself to keep reading because I had a feeling that it would improve as it progressed and I was right.

Although on first impressions it generates a mood of apathy and depression, you need to see past that and need to grasp that in order to feel what Eva, the narrative monologue, is feeling.

Ultimately it is every parent's worst nightmare; their first born son turning into a cold-hearted murderer, it is a genius idea for a novel and, despite slow starts, I think Lionel Shriver pulls it off a treat.

I'm not sure about anyone else but I certainly was shocked by the end of the book and really didn't expect the ending to be like that! The mystery and the suspesne was built up really well - and you can clearly see that the author planned and paced this book well.

On the other hand, I'm not quite sure the cultural themes going on quite worked in the sense that I often sped read large paragraphs about "the ugly American" and "Capitalism, materialism". I guess, yes they are there for a reason - but i personally wasn't entranced.

All in all, a good read.


The Six Wives Of Henry VIII
The Six Wives Of Henry VIII
by Alison Weir
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative & intriguing, 28 April 2008
I must admit I didn't know it would be a biography-style book when I bought it, but it also had aspects of a story in it which made it a good read.

I liked the way the book progressed from one wife to another and particularly liked the way the book was divided into parts and chapters which seemed to produce a sound organisation and clear, easy navigation of the book not only as a fictional read but also as a reference book.

Alison Weir is clearly a very dedicated historian writer. Facts and fiction carefully fused together and arguments sorted out (paintings and portrait descriptions were argued very well). I liked the way she sometimes brings the 21st century into her writing, explaining for example, what remains today of the palaces and houses of Henry VIII and the burial sites of the monarchs. Very interesting stuff.

All in all, i enjoyed reading it although in future may stick to Alison's fiction.


A Quiet Belief In Angels
A Quiet Belief In Angels
by R.J. Ellory
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.19

22 of 29 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A quiet belief that the pace will pick up, 7 April 2008
A Quiet Belief in Angels appeared to me, by the mass praise and outstanding reviews, one of 'the books' to read in 2008. I gave in to pressure and ordered a copy for myself - actually thinking that the brief synopsis seemed pretty good.

I don't give up on books that easily but I really struggled to get through the first few chapters. Several times I got distracted easily whilst reading, I found the language was very much carefully written but ultimately not engaging enough to keep me interested.

I didn't warm to the main persona, Joseph and many of the other characters seemed somewhat merged - the dozen Sheriffs confused together in my mind and I seemed to forget the names of his Guardian friends also. I felt the female characters also were hard to warm to. Miss Webber the teacher seemed at the start of the book an (ironic) angelic character however I personally felt rather uncomfortable reading about her developing relationship with Joseph (probably just me, can't quite put my finger on why exactly, I'm not agist or a prude, I just couldn't seem to grasp the relationship).

Like many of the other reviews on Amazon I agree that for Joseph Vaughn it was tragedy after tragedy, any happiness was quickly drowned out by more tragedy so that in a sense the book seemed rather depressing and projected a rather grey hue to my feelings when reading it!

The culprit was guessable a quarter way into the book and the ending seemed somewhat blurry and dare I say it, a cliche.

The descriptive language often took over the plot and caused me to speed read at times.

I'm glad I gave it a go but It did not impress me like it seemed to impress the majority!!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 9, 2008 12:05 PM BST


Prom Date (Point Horror)
Prom Date (Point Horror)
by Diane Hoh
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent mystery with a terrifying twist, 21 Aug 2003
This book was certainly one of a kind. It was the first point horror book i'd read. So i was expecting corny predictible plots, but i was wrong.
In a nutshell one of the 'populars' at Margaret's school is suddenly found dead at the bottom of the lighthouse on the rocks below. Most people think she fell but Margaret think she was pushed- and she's determined to find out who.
When Margaret is invited to the school prom she's over the moon but then suddenly she's viciously attacked and somebody want's to kill her.
It's not long after when another girl is attacked. Margaret knows somebody dosen't want the prom to happen. And she desperately followes on the murderer's trail.
The book is so well written from the start. There is about 10 suspects. All female and all the same age. The book tricks you all the time. As you add the clues up and believe you have the killer new evidence is found and you're proved wrong. And at the end of the book, when you find out who the killer is in a terrifying scene, it is the person you least expect.
I have yet to find a better point horror book and in my opinion Diane Hoh certainly gripped me and i'm sure many other readers.


Dicey's Song (Tillerman Series, Book 2)
Dicey's Song (Tillerman Series, Book 2)
by Cynthia Voigt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.56

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Book, 22 July 2002
The second part of the Tillerman series was definately one of the books i was looking forward to reading. It carries on from where we left off in 'Homecoming' where Dicey and her family are living with their grandmother who is very emotionally strong. It was so amazing to read that I felt as if I were actually there and just by reading it I felt as if I actually knew Dicey. The book is again full of different moods- happiness to sadness. This book is definately one to read.


Tillerman Series (1) - Homecoming
Tillerman Series (1) - Homecoming
by Cynthia Voigt
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the most amazing books I have ever read, 22 Jun 2002
When my mother first picked this book out of me at the shop I can remember thinking to myself. 'It looks boring' but even the first page started to interest me. It grew on me a lot until I was reading day after day. I have now read it so many times that It's falling apart.
What interests me is how it is so realistic when Dicey must lead her family to the other side of America on foot. It is sad in places, funny in places but most of all is amazing how it is so detailed and described.
This book is so great for anyone. Young or old. I would strongly recommend this to anyone who loves to read.


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