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Mr. Robert Marsland (Glasgow)
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Stuff I've Been Reading
Stuff I've Been Reading
by Nick Hornby
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.49

4.0 out of 5 stars likable but patchy, 8 May 2014
On dipping into Nick Hornby's Stuff I've Been Reading I found it quite stimulating at first, with interesting pages about the young adult genre in fiction, or a book about austerity Britain, or on Patti Smith's autobiographical "Just Kids". Other entries however prove less good. It is therefore on the whole likable if patchy at times. pretty good


Americanah
Americanah
by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Edition: Paperback
Price: 3.85

4.0 out of 5 stars accomplished writing, but is the story that compelling?, 30 April 2014
This review is from: Americanah (Paperback)
I read Half of a Yellow Sun by Adichie a number of years ago having been drawn by its excellent title, thinking with a title like this this book will probably be something. Inasmuch I wasn't disappointed and the story proved to be a compelling and to me also an educative one. Coming to Americanah then I was interested to see what the author had come up with. Adichie's style seems to have become more literary with prose that is tauter and more involved in this book, - she seems to have wanted a more descriptive tone this time, and in this she succeeds very much. I feel however that the storyline of a Nigerian emigre in America returning home to see her lover is not as engaging as Half of a Yellow Sun and that there seems to be too much of daily goings on, however colourful these things might be.


How to Deal with Adversity (School of Life)
How to Deal with Adversity (School of Life)
by Christopher Hamilton
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not as good as some of the other books in this series, 28 April 2014
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Having read "how to think more about sex", "how to age" and "how to be alone" in this series of books and found them enlightening and interesting, "how to deal with adversity" came as something of a disappointment. It just was not as deep or as interesting as the other texts were - the insights were not as good. could have done better


Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman
Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman
by Haruki Murakami
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.99

4.0 out of 5 stars not as good as after the quake, 26 April 2014
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Apart from some exceptions I didn't really feel that this collection of short stories by Murakami reached the high water mark of After the Quake. a bit hit and miss


Concrete (Vintage International)
Concrete (Vintage International)
by Thomas Bernhard
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars life on hold, 23 April 2014
The musicologist who is the main protagonist and narrator of this tale spends nearly all his time knocking around his inherited property somewhere in Austria. He is annoyed by his successful business woman sister's intrusions into his life and sometimes blames her for his inability to get around to writing a book on Mendelssohn. He is neurotic and something of an exaggerator about his poor state of health and cannot see much good in either society or mankind in general. An intellectual who hides from life, he frightens himself in the end with something from his past.


Micro Fiction
Micro Fiction
by J. Stern
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.39

5.0 out of 5 stars excellent micro stories, 23 April 2014
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This review is from: Micro Fiction (Paperback)
As the title suggests these stories are really really small, but with so much in so short a space and very creative too. brilliant


Flash Fiction Forward: 80 Very Short Stories
Flash Fiction Forward: 80 Very Short Stories
by Robert Shapard
Edition: Paperback
Price: 9.48

5.0 out of 5 stars 5 star stories, 23 April 2014
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One or two people mentioned flash-fiction (very very short stories) to me when it was just becoming a phenomenon, maybe six, seven, eight years ago and I pretty much dismissed it as another lightweight fashion, as I am apt to do with fashions. In a way I wish I hadn't now and had instead had taken notice, because lightweight it is not mostly, it is real literature with depth and weight and flare as well as surprise and poetry. This collection certainly ticks all those boxes. excellent


The Stornoway Way
The Stornoway Way
Price: 4.31

4.0 out of 5 stars thought it was paean to alcohol but maybe not, 21 April 2014
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This review is from: The Stornoway Way (Kindle Edition)
I read this more or less when it came out having been a fan of MacNeil's poetry. It seems to have gone by me because if it was a warning against drinking it was very subtle, and instead it seemed to me a celebration of boozing.


Kokoro (UNESCO Collection of Representative Works)
Kokoro (UNESCO Collection of Representative Works)
by Natsume Soseki
Edition: Paperback
Price: 8.89

3.0 out of 5 stars japanese emotions, 20 April 2014
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I thought this novel might turn out to be something special, but after a while I became annoyed with its focus only pretty much on the emotions of its characters, and where nothing else happens much - even ordinary things. It concerns the tale of a young student some time ago and his friendship with an older man who seems to harbour some terrible secret that effects him every day. The young student tries to work his friend out by probing him and his wife, hoping to know him properly therefore. There is a dance of revelation and concealment between the characters, but I couldn't be bothered with it.


Art Objects: Essays on Ecstasy and Effrontery
Art Objects: Essays on Ecstasy and Effrontery
by Jeanette Winterson
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

5.0 out of 5 stars excellent art essays, 16 April 2014
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Having read Jeanette Winterston's Oranges are not the Only Fruit some time ago and having seen her interviewed on television,I came to this book of essays knowing the high reputation that she has. Art Objects is a wonderful confirmation of this, being written in the most flowing and fluid prose tackling how we should look at art, how Gertrude Stein's autobiography Alice B Toklas bends the genre, her interest in Virginia Woolf, her addiction to books, underlining how she believes good writing is about the word and even questions about how we should live our day to day lives. This is a book for people who are serious about the arts and although you might not agree with all her ideas it is a brilliant and enlightening read nonetheless.


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