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Reviews Written by
M. R. Cheung (England)
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Jane Austen: A Family Record
Jane Austen: A Family Record
by Deirdre Le Faye
Edition: Paperback
Price: £25.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 7 Jan. 2017
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Absolutely invaluable for anyone wishing to know about Jane Austen's life.


In These Times: Living in Britain through Napoleon's Wars, 1793-1815
In These Times: Living in Britain through Napoleon's Wars, 1793-1815
Price: £6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 7 Jan. 2017
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Fascinating and detailed picture of anew important period of history.


Elizabeth is Missing
Elizabeth is Missing
Price: £4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 7 Jan. 2017
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Great story, well told.


The Buried Giant
The Buried Giant
Price: £5.69

3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 7 Jan. 2017
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This review is from: The Buried Giant (Kindle Edition)
I admire Ishiguro's work so much I can't bring myself to give less than 3 stars. But the truth is if this had been written by anyone else I would not have kept reading. It seemed dull forced and slightly ridiculous. Perhaps I missed something. I shall leave it a while and then try reading it again.


How to Create the Perfect Wife
How to Create the Perfect Wife
Price: £4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars The narrative flows and draws in the reader like the very best fiction, 7 Jan. 2017
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A very readable book. The narrative flows and draws in the reader like the very best fiction. But wide reaching research provides the wealth of detail which makes this kind of non-fiction fascinating.


Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare ?
Contested Will: Who Wrote Shakespeare ?
Price: £5.03

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Balanced account, 7 Jan. 2017
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Brilliant, balanced account. I love the way James Shapiro remains unfailingly courteous to people with opposing views despite the fact that he does not always receive the same consideration.


The Versions of Us: The Number One bestseller
The Versions of Us: The Number One bestseller
Price: £3.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A great idea spoiled, 7 Jan. 2017
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A great idea to tell different possible lives. But why oh why did the author have to create people with such very very boring lives in every reality?


Wordcrime: Solving Crime Through Forensic Linguistics
Wordcrime: Solving Crime Through Forensic Linguistics
Price: £8.07

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy the Kindle version., 1 May 2016
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Quite an interesting book but spoiled by the fact that no thought had been given to how it would appear on a Kindle reader. The charts and tables which form an important part of the book are indecipherable on screen.


Mrs. Shakespeare: The Complete Works (Independent Voices)
Mrs. Shakespeare: The Complete Works (Independent Voices)
by Robert Nye
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Read the Afterword, 21 Nov. 2013
I enjoyed this very much. I enjoyed the skill in which an apparently haphazard narration builds into a vivid portrayal of the characters and their lives. Mrs Shakespeare is wonderful - and believable. I enjoyed the references to Shakespeare's work and what is known about his life; and the poetic rhythm of the book made it very easy to read - oddly enough easier to read than a great deal of poetry. Mrs Shakespeare with her scathing opinions on 'poesy' would probably have something very wise to say about that.

But anyone reading this book should take care to look atthe 'afterword'. In it the author explains 'the central imaginative thesis' of the book. I, for one, would not have realised what this was from simply reading the novel.


A Necessary Fiction
A Necessary Fiction
Price: £3.49

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compelling and just a little disturbing, 16 Oct. 2013
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The great strength of A Necessary Fiction is it characters. We meet the central character Laura just as she loses her father and soon learn that she has a very bad relationship with her mother. She has been kept in ignorance about her father's true history and has lived a life dominated by her parents. She stumbles into independence during the early chapters of the book and the reader is drawn in, wanting to know how she will use her new-found freedom. The answer which Jane Emerssen delivers is satisfyingly complex. This is not a book of easy answers. The discoveries Laura makes about her family are disturbing and the decisions she takes about her own life are probably not always ones the reader will approve, but the great thing is the way the author makes us believe in those decisions. She creates a very believable world that I found myself wanting to return to more and more as the story progressed.

The other characters that inhabit that world are all well drawn. Laura's mother is wonderful: part of that long tradition of believably awful fictional women - think Austen's Mrs Norris, or Dickens' Miss Murdstone - who can turn simple domestic situations into sheer misery. Then there are the aunts who turn out not to be quite what they seem, and the men between whom Laura must choose. They all make for an entertaining - but slightly disturbing - read.


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