Posts

Showing posts from June, 2018

7 great crime stories

Image
Whether you just like reading crime or you want to write it, these novels are all by masters of their craft and are great stories you can enjoy as a reader and learn from as a writer.
The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins
Often regarded as the first English-language example of the modern detective story, The Moonstone is about the disappearance of a jewel rather than a violent crime, but the reader is kept gripped by how the events of one night impact on the lives of believable, engaging characters.Technically, The Moonstone is a masterclass in how to tell a story from different points of view without confusing readers.
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
You can’t mention crime without mentioning Christie and The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is widely considered to be her masterpiece, since it’s told from the perspective of the murderer and yet it’s only at the end that we find out who, exactly, they are.It’s also a gripping whodunit in classic Christie style.
Pietr the Latvian: Inspector…

7 great books for reading on rainy days

Image
So today is the day before the summer solstice in the UK and looking out of the window, frankly it looks a whole lot more like winter, or at least autumn.  For the record, that picture was taken a while back, but it could easily have been today and, also for the record, it was taken in colour, that's not a black-and-white filter, that's how it was.  Anyway, navigating a huge puddle on my way to work today has set me thinking about books you could dip into on rainy days, maybe when you were planning to do something else, but had to stay indoors.I was looking for books which you could dip in and out of and which most people would enjoy, even if they had different tastes in fiction.So, here are my picks.
Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable
New editions of this book are investment purchases, but older ones can be available very affordably.I’ve only ever seen this book myself in hard copy and I’d only buy it that way since I’ve heard that the formatting on the Kindle editions c…

7 great books about travelling

Image
Since now is the time many people are heading off on holiday, I thought I'd compile a list of 7 great books about travelling, which you can read on a plane or at any other time. I chose books which were specifically about travelling rather than books which involved characters making journeys but where the journey was not the main focus of the book.
Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne
While this is a fictional adventure story rather than a proper travelogue, it’s still a cracking read.
Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
Opinions are divided on this book, but then you could say that about most books. Some people see it as self-indulgent, which, in a way, I suppose it is, but in another way, the author experiences feelings I think many of us can understand and tries to resolve them by travelling to discover the world and herself. She’s not the first, she won’t be the last, but she has written a book many people love.
I'm off then: losing and finding myself on the Cam…

7 Great Books about People Dealing with WWII

Image
If you’re reading this when it’s posted, it’s D Day, the beginning of the end for WWII.With that in mind, here’s a selection of 7 books relating to WWII, written from the perspective of civilians who also survived extraordinary horrors.
After Auschwitz: A story of heartbreak and survival by the stepsister of Anne Frank by Eva Schloss
I chose this over the better-known Diary of Anne Frank for two reasons, firstly Eva Schloss survived the war and I think the post-war part of her story is at least as interesting as the part relating to the war years and secondly, I object to the copyrightbattle over Anne Frank’s work.
Goodnight Mister Tom Michelle Magorian
This is billed as a children’s story but I enjoyed it as an adult.The basic plot revolves around a boy sent to the countryside as an evacuee, who develops a close relationship with the man assigned to look after him.Then the boy is summoned back to London but his return does not quite go as intended.
The Book Thief Markus Zusak
This is anoth…