A Common Reader

"Committed to reading"
Summertime, and the living is easy
Top Reviewer Ranking: 39
Helpful votes received on reviews: 93% (8,407 of 9,071)
Location: Sussex, England
In My Own Words:
I review books so I remember them. Otherwise so many of them vanish like the morning mist. Books are as important to me as my mandolin - and that's saying something


Top Reviewer Ranking: 39 - Total Helpful Votes: 8407 of 9071
Alphabet House by Jussi Adler-Olsen
Alphabet House by Jussi Adler-Olsen
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Danish author Jussi Adler-Olsen is to my mind one of the best of the Scando-Crime wave of authors. A writer of tense, edgy novels, with a terrific build-up of suspense, his latest novel, Alphabet House is no exception and is not a book for the faint-hearted.

In his introduction, Adler-Olsen writes, "I am the son of a psychiatrist and grew up in the surroundings of 'lunatic asylums', as they were called in Denmark" (at the time). In his new novel, he sets such a place in the context of Nazi Germany, to terrifying effect.

Bryan and James are flying a reconniasance flight over western Germany, taking photographs of new military installations. Their plane is… Read more
The Knot by Mark Watson
The Knot by Mark Watson
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
In The Knot, we read the life story of wedding photographer Dominic Kitchen as he grows from boyhood to late middle age. Dominic is brought up in the London suburbs in a close family, his older brother mocking him in childhood and being patronising in adult-hood, while his older sister Victoria provides him with the friendship and support which other family members seem to withhold. The book explores Dominic's relationship with Victoria at great length, from childhood holidays in Southwold, through to Victoria's glamorous later life, in which her need for support leads Dominic to repay her for the strength she provided him in earlier years.

I enjoyed reading about Dominic's… Read more
Summer House with Swimming Pool by Herman Koch
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Dutch Herman Koch became known to British readers through his black comedy The Dinner, which I thought was a very good read. I jumped at the opportunity to read his new book Summer House with Swimming Pool and was not disappointed.

Marc Schlosser is a doctor in need of a career change. He is a bit of a burnt-out case and takes no pleasure in dealing with his patients. He has a reputation for prescribing them anything they want without asking too many questions and his patients rely on him to indulge their medical worries by listening to their litanies of complaints. What they don't know is that his mind his elsewhere and he has a general contempt for their hypochondria… Read more