Recent Reads (2)

I’ve been wanting to talk about these books for a while but I don’t have enough to say about each for a full review.

Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Stardust had been sitting on my shelves unread for like a year. Since I end up watching the film pretty much every time it’s on TV I figured that I should finally pick it up and read it. I really enjoyed it, even though it’s completely different from the film. The plot is basically the same but some of the best characters from the film like Captain Shakespeare aren’t in it. I enjoyed the writing style, it’s written in the style of fairy tales and is pretty simple.

Black Friday by Robert Muchamore

Black Friday is the final book of the Aramov trilogy. I had been waiting a year to read it and it didn’t disappoint. I loved that James Adams the main character from the previous Cherub series was brought back.

Miss Peregrines home for peculiar children by Ransom Riggs

I’d been wanting to read Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children since I heard about it years ago. I loved the idea that it contained real old pictures and I was expecting it to be really good. It turned out to be kind of average so I was disappointed. I think that’s sort of my fault though because I built it up too much in my head. If you like books that feature supernatural people who are being hunted by other supernatural people you’ll enjoy Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children.

Girl of nightmares by Kendare Blake

This book was hugely disappointing. When I read Anna Dressed in Blood I couldn’t put it down because I wanted to know what going to happen. With this one I had to force myself to keep reading instead of putting it down.  I found it kind of boring as most of the book is spent building up to the ending. It just lacked everything that was good about the first book. [The first book had awesome/interesting ghosts, murder and ghost hunting. Plus a really good ending]  In my opinion Anna Dressed in Blood could have been left as a stand alone book.

A Storm of Swords 2: Blood and Gold by George R.R. Martin

A Storm of Swords 2: Blood and Gold is the best Game of Thrones book I’ve read so far. (I’m still currently reading the next book A Feast for Crows) It’s ridiculously action packed and is basically death after death after death.


Review: The Cuckoo’s Calling

001Title: The Cuckoo’s Calling
Author: Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling)
Genre: Crime fiction, Detective Fiction
Number of pages: 449

When a troubled model falls to her death from a snow-covered Mayfair balcony, it is assumed that she has committed suicide. However, her brother has his doubts, and calls in private investigator Cormoran Strike to look into the case. 

Strike is a war veteran – wounded both physically and psychologically – and his life is in disarray. The case gives him a financial lifeline, but it comes at a personal cost: the more he delves into the young model’s complex world, the darker things get – and the closer he gets to terrible danger . . . 

When I first heard about The Cuckoo’s Calling I was curious but didn’t want to buy it straight away because crime novels aren’t really my thing. I downloaded the free sample on my kindle to get a sense of whether I would enjoy it or not and knew after the first chapter that I would end up buying it.

The Cuckoo’s Calling begins with the death of famous model Lula Landry. Since she fell from a balcony and had mental health problems the police quickly write it off as a suicide. Her brother John isn’t so sure and calls in our protagonist Cormoran Strike a private detective to look into it further. The book follows Strike as he interviews the people around Lula Landry and tries to piece together how and why she ended up falling from that balcony.

I haven’t read much crime fiction but I really enjoyed this book. It only took me a few days to read and kept me guessing all the way through. I couldn’t decide/work out who of two different people had some responsibility for what happened until it was revealed right at the end. Ok that sentence may have be worded weirdly but I don’t want to post any spoilers, people who spoil things suck.

Strike is a likeable enough main character and I liked the relationship between him and Robin. I’ve said this before but one of the things J.K. Rowling is best at is writing characters and it shows. There’s a large cast of characters in The Cuckoo’s Calling and they all felt pretty realistic.

I thought it was interesting that this book is set in 2010. It doesn’t explicitly tell you that it is but there are little hints like mentions of things that happened in the run up to the election and famous characters talking about having their phones hacked. I think I understand why Rowling chose to set the book in this time because the death of Lula Landry and Strikes investigation of it are heavily surrounded by the media and the press. 2010 makes sense because it was just before the Phone hacking scandal was revealed and the Leveston inquiry, at that time the press had much more freedom to hound celebrities and get ‘news’.

I definitely recommend The Cuckoo’s Calling even if you don’t read crime fiction.

September Rewind

In September I read 4 books. They were:

Geek Girl by Holly Smale
Black Friday by Robert Muchamore
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K Rowling)

September was a pretty busy month for me as I moved from London to university in an entirely new city . I enjoyed all the books that I read. I reviewed Geek Girl and am currently planning reviews of The Cuckoo’s Calling and Fangirl.