Half Man, Half Book

Top Reviewer Ranking: 2,138
Helpful votes received on reviews: 74% (311 of 419)
Location: Dorset


Top Reviewer Ranking: 2,138 - Total Helpful Votes: 311 of 419
Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok, but not exceptional, 25 July 2014
Oscar is a fifteen year old school boy, who has met a girl called Marina and her father who is a painter of some talent. One night Marina takes him to see a strange ritual at a local graveyard, where a woman dressed in black arrived by a horse drawn coach and leaves a single red rose on a grave marked only by a black butterfly. They decide to follow her to find out who she is, and by doing so discover a shadowy secret in the catacombs and sewers of Barcelona. It takes them on a whirlwind journey through the dark underside of the city, where they confront their greatest fears, and discovery their true mettle.

Really a YA book, and is a melodramatic gothic horror, which is not my… Read more
Consolations of the Forest: Alone in a Cabin in th&hellip by Sylvain Tesson
Tesson has a desire for freedom and solitude, and decides on a whim to take himself off to the shore of Lake Baikal, to stay in a 3 metre square log cabin, a six day hike from the nearest village. From February to July of that year he inhabits that small cabin, built many years previously by geologists it has a small cast iron stove and very primitive facilities. When he arrives in February he is in the middle of the brutal Siberian winter, and sets about gathering wood to warm the cabin. Each day is a challenge when he thinks about his solitude, but he starts a routine of collecting fuel, and taking time to smoke and read in the mornings, fishing and exploring his local environment… Read more
Nothing To Envy: Real Lives In North Korea by Barbara Demick
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Grim but compelling, 25 July 2014
North Korea has been a closed society since the end of the Korean war, And whilst South Korea has gone from a dictatorship in the 1970ís to a full democracy now, North Korea has maintained its position as a 1950's communist totalitarian state.

Under the leadership, and I use the word hesitantly, of Kim Il-sung then Kim Jong-il and now Kim Jong-un the country has made little progress. As other communist states have fallen or transformed themselves, the North Koreans have become ever more cruel and brutal to maintain the status quo. Both father and son were treated as Gods by the population, and following the death of Kim Il-sung many people never recovered from they loss… Read more