Another batch of book reviews.
It's time for another round up of some of the books and short stories which I've recently been reading...
|Incidents In The Life Of A Slave Girl by Harriet Jacobs|
If you've ever felt fed up with some trivial part of your life then read this book and it'll help to put things back into perspective, and make you realise how lucky we are to live with the freedoms we take for granted. At times it was heart-breaking to read about the inhumane horrors that went on, and the evils and blind hypocrisy of society in centuries gone by, but this is also a story of hope, and as well as describing the evil of slavery it also recounts Harriet Jacobs' quest for freedom (written using the pen-name Linda Brent). I'm not usually a fan of historical books, but it was a very humbling experience to read Incidents In The Life Of A Slave Girl, and this is a book which stays on your mind long after you finish reading it. As it's out of copyright you can download it for free from Amazon for Kindle, so there's nothing to lose by giving it a try.
|Promise You Won't Tell by John Locke|
- 4.3 / 5.0
I generally prefer books which allow you to learn about the characters through their conversations, rather than books which simply describe the characters' attributes in the narrative, and Promise You Won't Tell is a book with lots of dialogue so in that respect it was right up my street. It's a definite page turner and there are also lots of twists and turns as the plot develops, so it scored strongly in that area as well. However, it was let down in my opinion by a ridiculous ending which had me shaking my head in disbelief. Unexpected plot twists are great - the first ninety percent of the book in fact contains several turns of events which keep you hooked - but after initially coming up with numerous clever ideas, at the very end the point of believability gets pushed too far. Nevertheless, despite the daft ending, this was still an enjoyable book, albeit one which could have been even better if it had featured a more realistic conclusion.
The Butterfly Effect by Scott Semegran
- 4.0 / 5.0
This is a pleasant short story about a parent and his two daughters who watch their five pet caterpillars grow and transform into butterflies. The story describes lovely moments from childhood such as sibling relationships, the youthful excitement of discovering new things and the realities of nature. I have to admit I wasn't quite expecting the story to end like it did, but overall this was an enjoyable short read and I liked the way it captured the fact that everything in the world is totally exciting when you're a kid. The Butterfly Effect covers an everyday topic, so if youre looking for an action packed dramatic adventure then it's probably not for you, but if you're looking for a quick snapshot of family life then The Butterfly Effect provides an enjoyable ten minutes or so of reading entertainment.
Tears Of The Giraffe by Alexander McCall Smith - 4.8 / 5.0
Alexander McCall Smith has quickly become one of my favourite writers and Tears Of The Giraffe only served to cement my already high appreciation of his writing. The book continues the story of Precious Ramtswe and her No.1 Ladies Detective Agency, and is just as exceptionally well written as the first book in the series. Strictly speaking, it's a detective fiction book but in reality this is as much about everyday life as it is about detective work. Whatever genre of books you usually go for, I would recommend giving Tears Of The Giraffe a read as I would imagine it will appeal to a broad cross spectrum of readers, but in particular anyone who enjoys a well written feelgood story with insightful moments into human nature.
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