Top Reviewer Ranking: 7,570
Helpful votes received on reviews: 96% (284 of 296)


Top Reviewer Ranking: 7,570 - Total Helpful Votes: 284 of 296
Little Egypt (Salt Modern Fiction) by Lesley Glaister
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I’ve never been disappointed in anything that Lesley Glaister has written and ‘Little Egypt’ is no exception. Rich, deep, deceptively simple, enthralling and horrific by turns, it is beautifully observed and written - a subtle delight. The two timescales – 1920s and circa 2000 – are handled in such a way as to be totally believable. Two different world’s experienced by one young girl become an old woman. I was going to say bag lady, but she’s not exactly that.

These days social services would almost certainly swoop on Little Egypt and the two youngsters but things were very different in the 1920s so that the situation is entirely credible. As are the plot’s various twists and… Read more
Instructions for a Heatwave by Maggie O'Farrell
Instructions for a Heatwave by Maggie O'Farrell
I absolutely hate ‘family sagas’, so while I have heard this novel so described, I have to say that I never even thought of it in those terms. Yes, it’s about a family, but it isn’t a saga, it’s an intricate, insightful story. Indeed ‘Instructions for a Heatwave’ epitomises my feelings about character. No matter what other flaws a book may have, if the characters come alive on the page, if you care what happens to them, for good or evil, you’re more than half way there.

Not that I can find many flaws in this book. It’s well constructed and beautifully written and there’s enough tension to keep you turning the pages. I couldn’t put it down. True, the tensions and incidents are… Read more
Nearest Thing to Crazy by Elizabeth Forbes
Nearest Thing to Crazy by Elizabeth Forbes
0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A near miss, 28 Mar 2014
I was really looking forward to reading this book. I was attracted by the cover (so nice not to have yet another wishy-washy, pastel chick-lit type of cover) and by the title and the blurb on Amazon. I’d also read some splendid psychological thrillers recently, notably Gone Girl – review coming up and was eager for more. I was to be disappointed.

Strangely though, this was almost a good read. That is, if you are thinking mostly in terms of the need to keep reading to find out what happens. On the other hand I found myself profoundly irritated, right from the start. The first and continuing source of my irritation was the editing, or rather the lack of it. If ever a book could… Read more

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