Reading Round-up

November Reads and December Prospects

Posted in Children's Books, Reading Round-up on December 1st, 2010 by admin – Be the first to comment

I’ve had a great month’s reading in November, a very varied collection of books with no stinkers to be seen/smelt/smelled…

The Language of Trees by Ilie Ruby

Fallen Grace by Mary Hooper

Night by Elie Wiesel

Your Presence is Requested in Suvanto by Maile Chapman

Alone In Berlin by Hans Fallada

The Little House by Philippa Gregory (to be reviewed soon)

Left Neglected by Lisa Genova (digital ARC to be reviewed soon)

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton (slightly whiffy perhaps..)

Coconut Unlmited by Nikesh Shukla



The Best of Men by Claire Letemendia (historical fiction)

Le Temps des Cerises by Zillah Bethell

The Birdhouse by Kelly Simmons (digital ARC)

The Virago Book of Christmas  edited by Michelle Lovric

These Things Hidden by Heather Gudenkauf

Late for Tea at the Deer Palace by Tamara Chalabi

and a late entry, Mr Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt which I have borrowed from the Mobile Library on, my favourite online book forum.

Oops and another late entry which I must review, The Blasphemer by Nigel Farndale.

That’s enough to be getting on with for the moment as the Christmas holidays can be rather hectic here, in a good way!

Meanwhile, Luke and Eva managed to get through quite a few books this month so I thought I’d add in their lists…

Eva’s Offerings


Brownies Christmas  Cheer by Caroline Plaisted

Watch Out for Witches by Hilda Offen

The Wizard’s Warning by Hilda Offen

The Trouble with Owls by Hilda Offen (currently reading and loving Hilda as you can see!)

Clarice Bean Spells Trouble by Lauren Child (having previously read and enjoyed Clarice Bean Utterly Me)

Luke’s Reads


We are experiencing the excitement of discovering a new, to us, favourite author Robert Muchamore and Luke has literally devoured the first three of the Henderson’s Boys series, The Escape, Eagle Day and Secret Army and we are anxiously awaiting the publication of the fourth book Grey Wolves which won’t be out until February 2011.  No need to mope for long though as there is another series, the Cherub  books of which there are 12, woo hoo!  Luke has read the first of this series, The Recruit and I think Santa will be bringing the next four in the series as well as some other books.

As a distraction from the Muchamore mania he’s also read a Jim Eldridge book, Jungle Kill in the Black Ops series (you can tell that Luke likes his war stories!) and I am pleased to report that Jim has written lots of other war related series and some excellent My Story books about life in the trenches, building the pyramids, sailing with the Spanish Armada and many more which should keep Luke interested for the near future.

At the moment he’s enjoying reading Time Riders by Alex Scarrow which makes a change from war, war, war and is throwing a bit of science fiction and time travel into the mix.  Apparently Scarrow has a nine novel series deal with Puffin so that’s more good news for us!

Oops, a late addition, almost forgot Diary of A Wimpy Kid Book 5 being devoured in a couple of hours and how many laughs Secret Santa by Guy Bass gave us all.

Well I think that wraps it up for myself and the Treezlets for now – I hope your November reads for you and your families have been equally enjoyable.

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Reading Round Up – April 2010

Posted in Reading Round-up on May 2nd, 2010 by admin – 7 Comments

An excellent reading month overall with no dreadful stinkers apart from one which wasn’t my usual genre at all, Living La Vida Loca by Belinda Jones – suffice to say I haven’t been a “chick” for a very long time and even when I was of an appropriate age, chick-lit did not appeal – just not my scene!

Highlights were the marvellous blueeyedboy by Joanne Harris and Still Alice by Lisa Genova - two very different novels but both gripped me equally.  It was a delight to be introduced to The Magic Toyshop, my first encounter with Angela Carter, thanks to Claire from Paperbackreader.  I also had my first experience of Sonya Hartnett via the very quirky and extremely enjoyable Thursday’s Child and if anyone can recommend any others by this author, I’m all ears! 

I had my second experiences of both Gemma Malley, The Resistance and Andrea Levy, The Long Song.  On reflection, I enjoyed The Resistance as much as The Declaration and The Long Song more than Small Island, the latter opinion being perhaps not the norm!



I’ve never been one to organise my To Be Read pile simply because I can change my mind very swiftly, being an “allegedly” typical Libran.  However, this month, I will attempt to read some of the Orange Prize shortlist, The White Woman on the Green Bicycle, The Lacuna and perhaps A Gate at the Stairs.  I also intend to read the two recent releases I have bought, House Rules by Jodi Picoult and Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey.  I have read and enjoyed most of Jodi Picoult’s books although sometimes I’ve found the moral dilemna/courtroom saga a tad formulaic.  I have heard such good things about Jasper Jones – I hope I’m not disappointed!

I’d love to hear any other opinions on the books I’ve read and/or intend to read plus any further recommendations re Sonya Hartnett would be extremely welcome.  Isn’t it so good to “meet” a writer for the first time and then to really want to get to know them better…

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Reading Round-up – March 2010

Posted in Reading Round-up on April 1st, 2010 by admin – 1 Comment

An average month for me, reading-wise, with the extremes of The Passage – Justin Cronin weighing in at 790 pages and The Prince of Mist – Carlos Ruiz Zafon, a mere 198 pages, being my teeniest read.  I really enjoyed The Passage but definitely needed some lighter fayre (in words and subject matter) for the remainder of the month in order to avoid literary indigestion. 

I’ ve discovered a few gems which I will be putting aside for Luke and Eva in the hope that they will enjoy them as much.  I think Luke will like The Prince of Mist as I mentioned the moving statues which are reminiscent of one of his favourite Dr Who episodes, Blink – one of my favourites too actually.  Eva will enjoy Philippa Fisher and the Stone Fairy’s Promise in a couple of years time – at last, a modern fairy story with feisty characters for younger readers which isn’t written by the Daisy Meadows machine! 

I’m eagerly awaiting Sally Gardner’s next opus as I read and loved The Silver Blade this month.  In the meantime I can enjoy reading her Magical Children series to Eva.  Another little gem was the quiet, subtle novel The Well and the Mine – Gin Phillips.  The Jordan Stryker book is currently doing the rounds of my friends’ children and going down very well too.  Surprise of the month, for me, was The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein – I didn’t think Formula 1 and a canine narrator would work but it’s actually a winning combination.  Reviews of the Garth Stein and Philippa Fisher are in the pipeline.

Oh and I began this blog this month  too – I feel like I’ve been here forever (in a good way!).  It’s certainly helping me to organise recording my reading and also adding to my wishlist as I read other bloggers’ reviews.  Hopefully I haven’t committed any cardinal blogger sins and if I have, all I can say, in French style, is “pff” – you will have to imagine the Gallic shrug which accompanies that remark…

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