Friday, 6 February 2015

Case Histories

Image sourced from here
I received this book as a Christmas present from my father in law several years ago. We were going to spend Christmas with him again last year, so I had to read this before I showed my face.

This book is about an ex-cop, ex-soldier, Jackson Brodie, now turned private detective. However we start with three cold cases that are then explored throughout the book.

I'm not sure really why there are three. As although all are explored a little, only one really gets a lot of attention. I would have probably suggested if I was the editor, that maybe only one was necessary and you could save the other two for other books. Mainly because I felt one story was given the majority of the time, with the other two shoved in as plot devices or afterthoughts.

I also felt that some of the pretty heavy themes in this book where just thrown in and never dealt with. I'm all for heavy in my books, but explore and deal with them. Don't shove in an issue in order to show how edgy you are or whatever and never deal with it. It's almost irresponsible authoring.

I'm not really sure why I was gifted it. I believe it was because it was read and enjoyed, so was passed on. Unfortunately I didn't really feel the same.

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Sex with the Queen

Image sourced from here
If you want to learn about royal history across Europe, over hundreds of years, this book and it's predecessor Sex with Kings, are the books for you.

I really enjoy this author. She has a way of taking history and making it fun. A lot of that is through her writing and prose, it's accessible and doesn't feel like you are reading a history book. She also has a way of writing about the subjects which make them feel more like characters in fiction than real people. I guess you can say that in some ways, royals are.

This book takes us through the halls of palaces in Germany, England, Russia, France, Spain and Italy looking at the women who were the most powerful women in their lands. And the things they got up to either in secret or with everyone's knowledge. She handles her subjects with grace and dignity, and without judgement.


Until we hit Diana. Then you can feel the judgement and almost scorn seeping out of the pages. Which was so so disappointing when the rest of the book was handled very differently. It left an icky taste in my mouth, wishing that I had stopped reading that chapter earlier. So I recommend that you all read the book, but stop that chapter earlier.

The Lies of Locke Lamora

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I'm really struggling to write about this book. I don't know what all these fantasy writers are
consuming at the moment at all their cons and festivals, but I say keep it coming. I have had the honour of reading some fantastic, original, well written and incredibly well told fantasy novels recently. And Locke Lamora and his crew have firmly cemented themselves on to this list.

In fact I've sat on this "review" for a few days and I have realised there is little more to be said of this book than has already been said. Pat Rothfuss wrote a brilliant review of it. You should read that.

But what I will say is that I will be following the Gentlemen Bastards again and again and again. I'll be following Locke Lamora around as long as there are books to read about him.