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Profile for K. Sewell > Reviews

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Reviews Written by
K. Sewell (Cardiff, Wales)

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Stunt Crow: Adventures in Nature
Stunt Crow: Adventures in Nature
Price: £1.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fly with the Crows, 3 Mar. 2014
I like crows at the best of times, the much maligned cousin of the majestic raven. They are gutsy cheeky birds that make a terrible racket. I absolutely loved the author's and illustrator's combined talent in making a magical little story about a stunt crow. It is short but carries a little of everything, an urge for survival, adventure, courage, playfulness, philosophy. It soars through the air, giving the reader a rare chance to go as the crow flies.


The Shining Girls
The Shining Girls
by Lauren Beukes
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.43

1.0 out of 5 stars Hype hype hype, 3 Feb. 2014
This review is from: The Shining Girls (Paperback)
Could not get into this convoluted book at all. As I skimmed through I knew some kind of time slip was going on, but could not muster up enough interest to understand it. The concept did not fit with the serial murderer genre in my view. The violence, and the language to describe it, was off-putting. It had no finesse or background explanation (apart from a couple of sentences). It had not a speck of humour to balance the narrative, nor any depth.
It seem that the public's appetite for gory violence is too gratuitously met by many writers these days. It's as if the more gruesome the better, but It just hasn't got the shock value any more, no matter how much you flog it (or stab it, or slash it or slice it... Yawn...)


The Wicked Girls
The Wicked Girls
by Alex Marwood
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 30 Dec. 2013
This review is from: The Wicked Girls (Paperback)
If there had been four and a half stars I would probably have rated it thus, only because some of the wildly implausible coincidences, but hey-ho, this was such an amazingly well thought out plot, such real characters, whilst having depth within such a fast paced story, I was truly impressed.
I listened to it as an Audiobook, and I don't know how much this contributed to my enjoyment of it, because the reader was incredibly good, able to give each character his/her own voice and accent. I listen to about three Aurdiobooks a week, and I can truly say that the Wicked Girls has been the star of the month.
Alex Marwood is a very skilled writer, and I shall get hold of any other of her novels.


419
419
by Will Ferguson
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Historically interesting, 28 Dec. 2013
This review is from: 419 (Hardcover)
I thought this book was good but missed its potential. It is well written, flows quite well, never boring, but this reader was left with lots of questions unanswered. The character of Nandy (might not get spelling right as I listened to the Audiobook) was introduced far too late in the novel, and after the long build-up of his story - which in itself was fascinating in terms of the history of oil exploitation in Nigeria - he is just summarily eliminated from it. He seemed to have no context in this novel, but could have been an interesting subject of another novel altogether.
Also, the long build-up of the the walk-about of the pregnant girl. What was her story? Why were we never told it?
The motivations and final state of mind of the suicidal father was also unanswered. A lengthy promising build-up, and then just having a trite one sentence explanation from his wife. "He just wanted to be a hero". The reader has invested a lot of time, energy and emotion into the story, and is left with crumbs.
Lastly, I would have liked the heroin's potential love story with the police officer to have been developed a little bit more. It seemed so promising, but we were left wondering.
Having said all this, the final scenes in Nigeria were RIVETING, CLEVER AND REWARDING. I would definitely read future books by this writer. I think he will be great one day.


Garden Mosaics: 25 step-by-step projects for your outdoor room
Garden Mosaics: 25 step-by-step projects for your outdoor room
by Becky Paton
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too easy and twee, 27 Nov. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Perhaps my expectations were too high, but this book shows the same stuff as all others: coasters, place mats, pots, butterflies and house numbers. There are too many like it. I had hoped to see a few more monumental pieces, murals and thel like, as it does in the blurb mention "large country expanse" as well as tiny terraces.


The Stranger House
The Stranger House
by Reginald Hill
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.78

3.0 out of 5 stars A stranger Tale, 19 Oct. 2013
This review is from: The Stranger House (Paperback)
My first and only other book by Reginald Hill was The Woodcutter, a novel which I found totally flawless in every way. Couldn't wait to get my hands on another one of his, and went for the stand-alone The Stranger House.
I found it well written, but the plot just laughably implausible(of course, comparing it critically to The Woodcutter). Even so, it's a good yarn, and I liked the characters. I think the writer could have stuck with one or the other plot-line, producing two novels of totally different genres. The two merging together just took the story, for this particular reader, way over the edge of credibility. As a fantasy, it worked fine, and my respect for the author is largely unaffected.


Apple iPod touch 32GB - Black - 4th Generation (Launched Sept 2010)
Apple iPod touch 32GB - Black - 4th Generation (Launched Sept 2010)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Same as always, 29 Aug. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Excellent little device which I use mainly for listening to audiobooks. Sound is good, perhaps I should have got th iPhone. Oh well


iBPM Black Luxury Leather Flip Case & Screen Protector for iPod Touch 4G 4th Generation 8GB 32GB 64GB
iBPM Black Luxury Leather Flip Case & Screen Protector for iPod Touch 4G 4th Generation 8GB 32GB 64GB

1.0 out of 5 stars Clumsy! Pointless, unusable, 29 Aug. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This case makes my iPod almost unusable, as its thick and covers part of the screen. Pointless item, and, though cheap enough, should be removed from amazon list


No Title Available

4.0 out of 5 stars Good, 29 Aug. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Met my expectations. It was cheap and cheerful, and seems well made. A little instruction booklet would have helped? I wonder who made it, poor guy could not have been paid much.


Flight Behaviour
Flight Behaviour
by Barbara Kingsolver
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.72

2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Patronizing, 8 July 2013
This review is from: Flight Behaviour (Paperback)
I have heard many people rave about this author and I felt it was time to tackle one of her long books. So I chose this one on spec, mainly because I could get it on audio.
Perhaps this was my mistake. What I felt was an over-long, self-indulgent and patronizing read, was made even more so by the author's own self-indulgent patronizing tone of voice. Her attempt at a male Caribbean accent is truly cringe-making, and apart from this, all other characters sound more or less the same, droning on in an over-enunciated long-winded fashion. Why didn't the audio people jump up and down with red flags, begging her to stop, and find a professional actor to do the job they know how to do.
I am sure the novel is better read in paper form, even so I thought she went over-the-top with mundane descriptions of kids' snotty noses, shopping in Walmart, the use of curling tongs and straighteners, the sewing in of new zippers. These meaningless fillers impeded the flow of the narrative, and I ended up not knowing or caring what this story was really about (apart from very obvious environmental warnings)
I always get a feeling that when an author becomes famous, his/her editor becomes intimidated and nervous of making any suggestions, particularly about shortening or eliminating over-long or tedious passages... perhaps afraid of losing the author to another publisher. Well, huge mistake! This author may be gifted and certainly productive, but in her boundless self-confidence she has lost sight of what is good tight tension-filled writing.
Perhaps I ought to give Poisonwood Bible a chance. Everybody raves about it...


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