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What are you reading? (2015)
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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Fri Nov 06, 2015 3:48 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote

Another Alan Sillitoe novel. Brian Seaton’s first love has reached her 70th birthday so the Seaton family are attending the celebrations. Birthday is the third novel featuring the Seaton family since Saturday Night and Sunday Morning.


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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2015 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finally received The Drowning Man from the library by crime writer Michael Robotham which features Joseph O’Loughlin’s contact in the London police, DI Vincent Ruiz, being fished from the Thames with a gunshot wound. Even worse, he has zero recollection of why he is in the river. He used to say he would pay good money to forget most of his life. Now he wants the memories back.


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Joe McWilliams



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 679


Location: Canada

PostPosted: Tue Nov 17, 2015 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meanwhile, in the wilds of northern Rupertsland, I have just finished one of the installments in the continuing bloody adventures of Uhtred of Bebbanburg, killing Danes in the service of the kings of Wessex in 9th and 10th Century England. Or what will become England.
Bernard Cornwell's books are becoming a bit formulaic, but are still good fun. Uhtred is like Starbuck in another set of Cornwell historical fiction stories - a pagan Dane (at least by upbringing and temperament), fighting for the Saxons against the Danes. Starbuck was a New Englander from an abolitionist family, fighting for the Confederacy. It makes for a certain moral complexity, although Uhtred is not much given to reflection. He acts and consequences be damned. In The Pagan Lord, he has just abducted his son from the site of his ordination into the Christian priesthood, killing a bishop and maiming another priest who had the ill-fortune to get in his way. Trouble will ensue, I predict.

Waiting for me is Luncheon of the Boating Party by Susan Vreeland. It has that lovely Renoir painting on the cover and I have no idea what's inside.


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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Sun Nov 22, 2015 1:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Something shorter for a change. I have started Such, Such Were the Joys, a reminiscence of his years at a boarding school in Eastbourne by George Orwell. It is the same one attended by Cyril Connolly, neither of whom had fond memories of the institution.


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Gul Darr



Joined: 21 Nov 2008
Posts: 715


Location: King's Lynn

PostPosted: Fri Nov 27, 2015 1:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whenever I hear the name Cyril Connolly, it always reminds me of Monty Python's Eric the Half-a-Bee!
I'm now reading the second volume in Alexandre Dumas' Vingt Ans Apres - the sequel to the Three Musketeers. Atfer finding volume one immensely enjoyable I am looking forward to the second half!


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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Sat Nov 28, 2015 3:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is years since I read a biography of Shakespeare so I was pleasantly surprised to see The Lodger Shakespeare on Silver Street on the library shelves. The writer is Charles Nicholl with a publication date of 2007. For those enthusiasts of Shakespeare's life there is nothing new to reveal, but I was intrigued by Nicholl’s revelation that in 1612, WS had given a deposition in a breach of promise case in London. The deposition is unique because it is the only recorded occasion of his actual spoken words as distinct from the written words of his plays and poems.


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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2015 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the two novels of the Michael Robotham crime series, the first one concentrates mostly on the psychologist Joseph O’Loughlin, the second on DI Vincent Ruiz while the next one The Night Ferry is dominated by the Sikh police constable Alisha Barba (when her name is shortened to Ali, you know what her nickname is). As usual there is a complex plot this time involving people smuggling, slavery, and other topical sensations of the daily papers. The sordidness of the crimes is softened by the skillfully realized personalities of the three characters on the side of good.


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Gul Darr



Joined: 21 Nov 2008
Posts: 715


Location: King's Lynn

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2015 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am frustrated that I am finding so little time to read Vingt ans après at the moment!


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Castorboy



Joined: 22 Nov 2008
Posts: 1798


Location: Castor Bay Auckland NZ

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2015 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's the same down under, Gul! The Christmas rush has begun which coincides with planning for the long summer holidays. Anyone seen reading a book is asked what they're doing when there so much else needing attention. When I worked full time I managed to find peace and quiet for a read only on the commute each day.


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Joe McWilliams



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 679


Location: Canada

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2015 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find plenty of time to read: the difficulty is in finding enough good stuff. Attempted and discarded this week is The Architect's Apprentice, by Elif Shafak. It showed promise, at least as a concept. A 16th C tale of intrigue set in (and out of) the palace of the Sultan in Istanbul. But I found it clumsily executed and jarringly unconvincing in the early going and gave up.

Instead I've begun The Dark Room, by Rachel Seiffert, a story set in Berlin in the Nazi period. I see it was nominated for the Man Booker. So far, so good, but there appears to be no dialogue, something that doesn't seem important at first but can become an obstacle to enjoyment, I find.



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