Categories
Book Reviews

The Secret Lives of Bees * by Sue Monk Kidd

It came to my mind when I saw Oprah’s book list of books to read that I have heard of “The secret lives of bees” but I never knew what it was about. Beekeepers? The lives of bees?

I never expected to read  a touching story of growing up and taking responsability, racism in America and a fight for equal rights.

“I’ve just never heard of a Negro lawyer, that’s all. You’ve got to hear of these things before you can imagine them.”
“Bullshit. You gotta imagine what’s never been.”

It’s a story about breaking stereotypes.  Lily believes that people have set roles, which they cannot transcend: black women work as housekeepers, black men do not become lawyers, and poor white women like Lily go to beauty school.

Categories
Book Reviews

Honeymoon * Susan Elizabeth Phillips

honey-moon-susan-elizabeth-phillips-paperback-cover-artAfter the dreary “Host” from Stephanie Meyer, I felt like laughing again so I picked up a book from 1993 written by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. I read (or mostly listened to it being read by Anna Fields in my car) the previous novels called “Hot Shot” with the troubles of a woman in a start-up business with electronics and another one from the post-civil war era of a mismatched romance between a Yankee and a Confederate called “Just Imagine“.

I knew what I was in for – a thrill ride, well written and full of humour and I was not disappointed.

Honey Jane Moon is only 16 but has been her family’s commanding force for years when she decides to drive her pretty cousin Chantal Booker from South Carolina to California to audition for TV’s Dash Coogan Show. Dash, “the last of America’s movie cowboy heroes” is indeed impressed–but by Honey, whom he picks to play his daughter. Although suddenly tossed into life’s fast lane, Honey still wants just what she always wanted: a close-knit family and some affection. Her South Carolina kin live with her, but their closeness resembles the adhesion of leeches. Dash, who learned about relationships from his ex-wives, turns a cold shoulder to Honey, who desperately needs him to be a real-life father figure, while Eric Dillon, Honey’s “dark, sullen, and gorgeous” co-star, stomps on the puppy love she has to offer. Yet it is only through their complicated relationships that Honey, Dash and Eric can finally exorcise their personal demons.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Categories
Book Reviews

The Host – Stephanie Meyer

Completely different from Twilight and offering a slightly better love story than Bella and Edward, The Host is a book about an alien species who call themselves “souls” who like to invade unsuspecting planets and attach themselves in the aboriginal life forms and live on their life spans. It’s a story about an invasion aftermath, about a wandering “soul” who could not fully exorcise the human conscience living inside its host body and who finds that the “monstrous” humans living on the planet were not as bad as described. It’s a story about another love triangle and being a book from Stephanie Meyer – it’s a boring love story.

The premise is good but the book is so drawn out and uselessly padded that I felt like stopping reading it a few times during the last 4 weeks (! this coming from the same person who devoured a similarly lengthy book in 2 days).

the-host-fanmade

Categories
Book Reviews

Ravishing in Red * Madeline Hunter

mh_ravishinginred1The first novel in a magnificent new quartet of historical romance Armed with her cousin’s pistol, Audrianna travels to a coaching inn, to meet with a man who may have information that will clear her dead father’s name. She does not realize that the handsome man of commanding sensuality who shows up is not the person she expected, but instead Lord Sebastian Summerhays, one of her father’s persecutors, lured to the inn by the same advertisement that brought her there. When the pistol accidentally fires, the situation becomes mortifyingly public, and thoroughly misunderstood. Audrianna is prepared to live with the scandal. Lord Sebastian has other ideas..

Categories
Book Reviews

The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi

51gCzgn1HrL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Musashi gives timeless advice on defeating an adversary, throwing an opponent off-guard, creating confusion, and other techniques for overpowering an assailant that will resonate with both martial artists and everyone else interested in skillfully dealing with conflict. For Musashi, the way of the martial arts was a mastery of the mind rather than simply technical prowess—and it is this path to mastery that is the core teaching in The Book of Five Rings.

Categories
Book Reviews

Anne Rice – Vittorio

phpThumb_generated_thumbnailEducated in the Florence of Cosimo de’ Medici, trained in knighthood at his father’s mountaintop castle, Vittorio inhabits a world of courtly splendor and country pleasures – a world suddenly threatened when his entire family is confronted by an unholy power.

In the midst of this upheaval, Vittorio is seduced by the beautiful and sinister vampire Ursula – setting in motion a chilling chain of events that will mark his life for eternity. Against a backdrop of the wonders – both sacred and profane – and the beauty and ferocity of Renaissance Italy, Anne Rice creates a passionate and tragic legend of doomed young love and lost innocence.

Categories
Book Reviews

The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro

theburiedgiant-book
Were you ever so charmed by a story that you would not put the book down? I was surprised to find this book to be a fantasy tale in a land where supernatural beings still existed and civilization was still in its infancy – where Romans had barely left and Britons and Saxons were living in peace after the war undertaken by king Arthur and Merlin.

Much of the story has twists and turns but it is good enough for a child to read it and enjoy it and also for an adult to read it and find hidden gems and pearls of wisdom.

Categories
Book Reviews

You – Caroline Kepnes Book Review

YOU is an intensely nerve racking and creepy novel with a touch black humour, leading towards the end that will have you screaming. YOU gives the reader an insight into the theme of love, romance and relationships of a different kind – control and obsession in a frighteningly disturbing fashion.

Categories
Book Reviews

Margaret Atwood – MaddAdam

“The people in the chaos cannot learn. They cannot understand what they are doing to the sea and the sky and the plants and the animals. They cannot understand that they are killing them, and that they will end by killing themselves. And there are so many of them, and each one of them is doing part of the killing, whether they know it or not. ”
― Margaret Atwood, MaddAddam

{8C8EE56D-9BAD-47A7-B4A3-6E7E7A020CF0}Img400From the visionary Sci-Fi writer that brought us Oryx and Crake and “The Year of the Flood” (which I have not read yet), comes the end of the trilogy of Snowman and the Crakers and the end of the era of Humanity and the new beginning.

The future has never looked so bleak.

Categories
Book Reviews

The edible woman – Margaret Atwood

I have read Oryx and Crake earlier this year and I could not resist the pull of Margaret Atwood. I saw a tattered paperback smiling at me from a charity window, £1 for a great classic. I paid the meagre price and I got back a lot more than I was expecting. Witty, funny, deeply cutting, a book about a modern woman of the 21st century living in the 60’s – when the morals were a lot stricter and the definition of a woman was who she  married.

The story could be summarised in one sentence but as most self-discovery books are, it’s deeper than the surface:

Marian, a 20-something woman in 1960s Toronto, gets engaged to her dull-but-respectable lawyer boyfriend, Peter, then soon begins losing her appetite for food