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Reviews Written by
J. Noon (Yorkshire, UK.)

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Omeros
Omeros
by Derek Walcott
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.88

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful work, epic in its nature and its success., 25 Mar. 2010
This review is from: Omeros (Paperback)
Make no mistake, this is not easy-going. But it is an unbelievably rich and rewarding read, if you persevere. On the basis of this poem alone, Walcott deserves the accolades he's received. It is wonderfully refreshing to read a writer who embraces different cultures, and avoids banal stereotypes or resorting to nostalgia. The poem is not merely a rewriting of Homer, but it is Walcott engaging with history, bringing down the classic from its lofty heights and applying it to ordinary people. For these fishermen, their Odyssey is the happenings of their daily lives.
My one criticism of this poem would be the inclusions of the anaphoric references to the Native Indians. To me, these parts are not completely successful, they detract from the central plot. This is but a slight detraction, though. The great strength of 'Omeros' is, without doubt, Walcott's writing. His verse is quite simply beautiful. While you may find yourself lost in the plot, you can't help but get lost in his language, and I mean this in a good way. It has a richness, a mellifluousness that seeps through the stanzas. This richness is echoed in the descriptions of St. Lucia itself, the indigenous flora, fauna, sea and sky combine to construct an image of a most beautiful island. However, language has a more powerful role in 'Omeros'. As the narrator tells us, 'this language carries its cure/its radiant affliction'. In contrast to its colonial past, the language is used as a freer, not enslaver. This is a poem about healing, about history, ancestry and about ordinary human-beings. There is an elation in this poem which is captivating. It is beautiful, breathtaking. Read it.


In the Woods
In the Woods
by Tana French
Edition: Paperback

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Hard-boiled detective-story with a soft, soft ending., 25 Mar. 2010
This review is from: In the Woods (Paperback)
As other reviewers have pointed out, the book falls short of its blurb. Way short. The synopsis and reviews gave me high expectations and I was sorely disappointed. And frustrated, oh so frustrated. One critic describes it as being fast-paced but it is anything but. The plot weaves slowly and broodingly, albeit teasingly, to a somewhat successful conclusion with the main storyline of the murder of Katy, the promising ballerina. In French's defence, she does manage to create a moody, atmospheric thriller. She writes well, although in places I found myself skipping over her rather protracted sections, especially when she's describing Ryan's memories as a child. I found myself thinking impatiently, yes, we've had the scene built up, but just tell us what happened to the children! Alas, the climactic denouement fails to materialise. As I suspected when I finished the book, you'll either love it for this reason, or feel like you've been led on. Coupled with the frankly irritating turn of events with Ryan and Maddox, I finished the book in a state of frustration and had half a mind to hurl it out the window. It is a book that sadly doesn't live up to the hype.


Noughts & Crosses: Book 1 (Noughts And Crosses)
Noughts & Crosses: Book 1 (Noughts And Crosses)
by Malorie Blackman
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book worthy of immense praise!, 6 Oct. 2004
I first read this touching story in 2001, and yet I still keep re-reading it, even though I'm three years older, and probably a little old for this book! That is precisely my point though - it's a truly absorbing novel that grips any reader of any age. It is one of the only books that has reduced me to tears, and as a result has been passed around all of my friends, who themselves love it, making it hugely successful through all differnt types of reader. An absolute must.


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