The Mirror and the Light

After more than 10 years, the third and final installment of Hilary Mantel’s twice Booker-winning trilogy about Thomas Cromwell has finally been published. The first and second books were only around three years apart (2009 and 2012), but it took Mantel eight years to finish the concluding novel, The Mirror and the Light, which continues…

A Discovery of Witches (All Souls Trilogy #1)

My first book review for 2018…and it’s not what I’d hoped it would be. It begins with absence and desire. It begins with blood and fear. It begins with a discovery of witches. The first book I finished in 2018 is A Discover of Witches by Deborah Harkness, which is the first book in her All…

On Chesil Beach

Ian McEwan’s novels never fail to engage me, whether they are over 500 pages or under 200. The same can be said about his 2007 novella, On Chesil Beach, which is about the ill-fated wedding night of a young couple, Edward and Florence. Florence is a talented violinist, and Edward is a young historian, and…

Dissolution

Dissolution is the first book in C.J. Sansom‘s Shardlake Series. Set in Tudor England, the series stars Matthew Shardlake, a hunchbacked lawyer who, through commissions from his master Thomas Cromwell, ends up doing more crime/mystery-solving jobs than legal work. Anne Boleyn has just been executed for infidelity and Queen Jane Seymour has just died of…

The Mysterious Affair at Styles

When an elderly heiress, sleeping alone in her room, is poisoned, it is up to private detective extraordinaire Hercule Poirot to solve the mysterious case and bring the criminal to justice! The small village of Styles St. Mary is shaken up when one of its most prominent, if not wealthiest, residents, namely, Mrs. Inglethorp, suddenly…

When We Were Orphans

I’ve only read three Kazuo Ishiguro novels so far, all of which fall under different genres. The first one I read was his 2005 science fiction novel, Never Let Me Go, followed  (many years later) by his Booker Prize-winning 1989 novel, The Remains of the Day, which is a Victorian/historical fiction. Recently, I read When We…

The Remains of the Day

You would think a novel about stuffy old butlers and housekeeper of “great” houses in England would be written by the likes of Jane Austen or the Bronte sisters in the 1800’s, but The Remains of the Day, which is primarily about a butler’s life and memories, is written by Japanese-born British author, Kazuo Ishiguro, in 1989.  On…

Rebecca

I’m probably one of the last people to read Daphne du Maurier’s famous suspense romance novel, Rebecca.  I’ve known about it for ages and it’s been recommended to me by a lot of people.  The book itself was published in 1938, which was a surprise because I always thought it was published sometime in the 1980’s.…

John Saturnall’s Feast

I wouldn’t consider it a Christmas book, but reading Lawrence Norfolk‘s John Saturnall’s Feast (2012) seems fitting this time of year when everyone is busy feasting and celebrating holiday traditions. John Saturnall’s Feast is a historical fiction that begins in 1625 in a small village in England.  Though he has never known another home, John…

Ian McEwan’s Got a Sweet Tooth

Sweet Tooth is Ian McEwan‘s most recent novel, published in 2012.  Its protagonist,  Serena Frome (rhymes with “plume”), a maths graduate from Cambridge with a penchant for speed-reading paperback fiction. Serena is beautiful, but not outstanding when it comes to solving mathematical problems, nor is she sophisticated in her literary tastes – she’s just your…