Helpful votes received on reviews: 91% (153 of 169)
Location: Ely, Cambridgeshire


Top Reviewer Ranking: 4,228,467 - Total Helpful Votes: 153 of 169
The Catcher in the Rye by J. Salinger
The Catcher in the Rye by J. Salinger
49 of 53 people found the following review helpful
There's a tendency for reviews of The Catcher In The Rye to speak of it as a teenagers' book, a story 'about' the problems of being a misunderstood school kid in a cold adult world. But Salinger's novel didn't become a classic by catering for the teen market. Its universal appeal stems from its universal theme. At heart we are ALL misunderstood school kids, and it's a cold old world out there. Holden Caulfield is just a human being in very deep trouble.
Specifically, he's been sacked from yet another school, he's too distressed & frustrated to stick around to the end of term but too frightened to go home, so he spends the entire book floundering around the city looking for somebody to… Read more
Mr Phillips by John Lanchester
Mr Phillips by John Lanchester
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nearly a masterpiece, 2 Feb 2005
Mr Phillips isn't at work today, he's having a day off, a day out. In his pinstripe suit, briefcase in hand, he wanders around London striking up the occasional conversation, catching buses, taking his son unawares for lunch and witnessing various oddities including a robbery at the bank. Why is he out and about in this way? Because Mr Phillips was made redundant last Friday and hasn't told anybody.
The book takes us through the rich landscape of everyday trivialities, as seen against his own sinking sense of futility and emptiness. It perfectly captures the beauty of the mundane, the fascination of other lives fleetingly glimpsed, the spotlight-on-the-moment magic of nothing in… Read more
Rainy Day Women by Jane Yardley
Rainy Day Women by Jane Yardley
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
It is the 1970s. Jo Starkey is 15 and doing her best to get along. This isn't easy. The house is falling down around her ears, her parents are elsewhere, and her three brothers are variously hopeless, useless or shut away with a Moog synthesiser, a folksinger and a one-man-band called Mungo. Jo's best friend Francine is on her side, but she is a bit of a drip - and anyway Jo is falling in love with Francine's boyfriend. Oh, and there's a ghost. Or there might be, unless it's all a huge scam perpetrated by one of the brothers.
Although the characters are larger than life and the circumstances comic, at the heart of this novel is a real sense of growing up in an atmosphere of loss and… Read more