J. Mccready

Helpful votes received on reviews: 86% (38 of 44)


Top Reviewer Ranking: 110,717 - Total Helpful Votes: 38 of 44
The Greatcoat (Hammer) by Helen Dunmore
The Greatcoat (Hammer) by Helen Dunmore
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable Novella, 14 Sep 2012
Very much a Novella made to look like a novel by clever typesetting (large print and acres of spare page abound).Lack of length is not unusual in the ghost story genre - most are short stories or novellas, although most are not puffed out to be made to resemble a novel. So, a short read.

This is my first Dunmore story, and I like her style of writing. It's undemanding, with the narrative nipping along at a fair pace and the characters swiftly drawn. Isabel is rather a lost woman, cast adrift as her doctor husband allows his new job to fill every hour - we see him through her eyes and it's not always a sympathetic picture. I enjoyed the build up to the finding of the greatcoat… Read more
Death Comes to Pemberley by P. D. James
Death Comes to Pemberley by P. D. James
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hmmm., 7 Sep 2012
I have no particular attachment to Pride and Prejudice or P.D.James, so bought this on the premise that it would be an interesting Georgian whoodunnit. Well, it wasn't too difficult to figure out the solution, and a dull one it was at that. The writing is what one would expect of a novelist of this calibre, but the characters are woefully adrift - Elizabeth is positively blank with subservience to her husband and position and not at all what I recall Austen's Elixabeth to be. Darcy is dull with his desperation to do the right thing and protect his name and the family reputation.

There's a lot of detailed explanation regarding backstory and the legal workings of the day - it's… Read more
Touchy Subjects by Emma Donoghue
Touchy Subjects by Emma Donoghue
5.0 out of 5 stars Polished Writing, 7 Sep 2012
It's not every writer who can turn their craft to the short story amd make it work. Emma Donoghue is one of those writers. I found each story in this compelling collection had something to say for itself. Emma has a deft touch and an attentive observational eye.

Each story has a different take on modern life and the social and personal compromises that we continually feel we have to make, from a man misreading his wife's reaction to her facial hair, to the search for the perfect blue that's really more about the tricks memory plays, to the escalating cost of a cat's vet's bills that results in one half of a couple wondering what would happen if her partner had to make the… Read more

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