I am at present busy with a project to catch up on the books that I have read since January 2009 when I started with my 36 books a year challenge. This blog documents what I have in a hand written book journal in order to give other book fans the chance to share in my challenge and to have access to reviews of books they might be interested in. Please leave a comment or link to your book blog if you have one.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

August 2011 - Book 21

The Lake of Dreams by Kim Edwards

Lucy returns home after her mom is injured in a car accident and amidst a troubling time of change in her life - well reflected by the ever present earthquakes in a then country of residence, Japan. She leaves her beloved Yoshi amidst his own turmoil to face her place of origin.

Back home at the Lake of Dreams, Lucy discovers a family secret that compels and grips her, almost away form the reality of life at present.Her old love Keegan also finds his wat into her life once again.

I just love stories about artists and long forgotten family secrets - thus this book was an obvious choice out of the bookclub library. But it is also a well written and easy read for all. I love how I managed to build the places so well described in my imagination without ever finding the author's descriptions too long or detailed.

A great bookclub read - 8/10

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

July 2011 - Book 18

The Reading Group by Elizabeth Noble

At the beginning of a new year, a group of five woman meet to form a reading group. Through the course of the year and the books that they read, we get involved in their lives. It turns out to be a most eventful year all round and the choice of books strangely reflects the twists and turns the lives of the characters takes.

The story is told in wonderful, easy to read language without being too simple. I loved the wonderful woman created for this story- each one unique and charming in their own way. Each developing and growing through the year in their own way. Wishing that I could be friends with every single one of them.

A truly charming and gripping read this is a great bookclub choice as most woman will find a like minded  friend in at least one of the characters. I also loved how the writer suggests books at the end of the book for reading groups and I intend to read some of these suggestions as well as the books read in the book during the course of the next year.

A totally charming 8 and a half/10

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

March 2011 - Book 7

Plaasmoord van Karin Brynard
Plaasmoorde het nog nooit werklik in die Noord-Kaap hulle brutale verskyning gemaak nie, maar 'n jong vrou word op haar plaas brutaal vermoor. By dit alles neem die vee diefstalle in die kontrei dag vir dag toe.

Aanvanklik wou ek dlag nie die boek lees nie want die onderwerp ontstel my geweldig. Maar op aandrang van 'n vriendin her ek dit 'n kans gegee en gelees en wat 'n storie! Heerlike karakters en 'n uiters spannende en ingewikkelde storielyn maak hierdie 'n heerlike en fasinerende lees. Gooi 'n bietjie politiek by en jy het 'n wenner.

Dit mag onregverdig wees om die skrywer met Deon Meyer te vergelyk (aan wie sy erkenning as 'n mentors figuur gee), maar die boek vergelyk goed terwyl dit die unieke kenmerke van die skrywer toon.

Sterk aan te beveel as jy van die tipe fiksie hou - 'n wel verdiende spannende 8/10  

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

March 2011 - Book 6

The Venetian House by Mary Nickson
This book was one of those pleasant bookclub surprises - you know, the type of books you will never buy, but on recommendation take out at the bookclub and then thoroughly enjoy.

When Victoria's husband Richard, dies unexpectedly she goes back to Vrahos, the old family home where her grandmother lives on the island Corfu. It is her happy place - where she feels sheltered and share many happy memories. Patrick, a photographer of old and beautiful houses, manhandled by his selfish wife, is sent to document the magic of the Villa and it's owner.

A multi generational love story, it reads with ease and relatively fast for the thickness of the book. A good and easy middle of the road type of story, but well worth the read.

A super idea for a holiday read - 7/10

Monday, July 18, 2011

July 2009 - book 22

'n Tapisserie met klein diere van Erika Murray-Theron 

Ek was aangenaam verras deur hierdie boek - ek het altyd gedink dat die skrywer jou tipiese Afrikaanse romantiese boeke skryf. Maar nee, sy skryf meesterlike stories wat ver buite die gewone raamwerk span.

In hierdie boek ontmoet 'n uiters komplekse en diverse familie mekaar vir 'n soort van reunie rondom 'n vakansie. Die uiteenlopende karakters, wat elkeen op sy eie manier tot jou spreek, het ook uiteenlopende geskiedenisse, fyn verweef met mekaar. Dan is daar ook die geraamtes in die familiekas wat ontbloot word.

Werklik 'n goeie en verrassende lees - 8/10

Friday, July 15, 2011

March 2011 - Book 8

 Room by Emma Donoghue

Jack lives with Ma in Room - a space of 11 feet by 11 feet. Everything on TV is not real our "out in space on another planet". The only person Jack ever sees or talk to is Ma and evil Nick is just a voice and a shadow. 
Just after his 5th birthday Ma makes a confession and Jack's whole idea of the world is blown apart. Driven by anxiety of her son growing up in total isolation, the delicacy of their safety and extreme dental pain, Ma plots a plan for Jack to escape outside of Room.

Told in Jack's own words and voice, this is a thrilling story about one woman and her son's ordeal at the hands of a mad man and monster. It is however also the story of how they adapt back into the outside world. I can see why is was on the Man Booker Prize 2010 short list at is truly brilliantly written.

A unique story well told - 9/10