Wednesday, August 29, 2012

'Catching Fire' by Suzanne Collins

Publisher: Scholastic

ISBN: 978-1-407109-36-7

Length: 472 Pages

Opening Line: 'I clasp the flask between my hands even through the warmth from the tea has long since leached into the frozen air.'


The writing in this book is intelligent, intense and the suspense Collins creates in this book had me racing through, to find out what happened next. It's not often that I read a book quickly, but I finished this book in less than three days, because I couldn't put this book down!

One slight complaint would be that some of the second half of the novel was a little similar to the first book, but there were enough surprises in there, to make this book different. The cliff hangers left at the end of this book, make me desperate to find out what happens next.

Is this worth a read?

Yes. I think that this is a fantastic trilogy, which is not just confined to a teenage audience.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

'Sunday Snippet'

I haven't done a 'Sunday Snippet' for a while due to personal reasons, but I thought I would post one from my latest read 'World Without End' by Ken Follett:

Page 266 : 'Gwenda got up while it was still dark.'

Having read 'Pillars Of The Earth' I was looking forward to reading this novel but so far, I'm quite disappointed. I'm not even sure I want to continue with this.

Do I continue or do I give up reading this? 

Whatever you're up to, have a great weekend.

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

'War Horse' by Michael Morpurgo

Publisher: Egmont

ISBN: 978-1-4052-2666-0

Length: 182 Pages

Opening Line: 'In the old school they use now for the Village Hall, below the clock that has stood always at one minute past ten, hangs a small dusty painting of a horse.'

The 'Blurb': 'A powerful story of the truest of friendships in the worst of wars from the award-winning former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo.'


Having seen the film adaptation of this novel, I was interested to see how it differs from the original text. The plot of  the novel 'War Horse' may be slightly simpler than the film version, but I think it is its simplicity, that makes this book more powerful. Even though this is a children's book, Morpurgo doesn't dumb down the effect that the war has on the soldiers and horse involved in the fighting and neither does it glamourize it. I did have some trepidation about the fact that a horse is the narrator of this story, but I think it works. This isn't a cute story about a horse, but a powerful message that war is useless and not everyone who is involved, wants to be there.

Is this worth a read?

If you love animals or a book with heart, then yes I would suggest reading this book. It would also be a great book to share with children, to educate them about the effects of war.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

'May I Have Your Attention Please?' by James Corden

Publisher: Arrow Books

ISBN: 978-0-099-56023-4

Length: 341 Pages

Opening Line: 'I've always thought that the first few lines of any book would be the hardest to write.'

The 'Blurb': 'So... the story of my life. I've often thought about this moment, about what it would be like to write my memoirs. I always thought it would make me feel important. It doesn't. If anything it makes me feels a little strange.

The truth is, I should never have been this famous guy. I wasn't the cool, clever, good-looking boy at school. But I always dreamt of it, hoped for it, longed for it: throughout school when I was disruptive, in my teens when I tried to form my own boy band, and through hundreds of auditions for parts which were met with constant rejection.

Until finally I co-wrote 'Gavin and Stacey'. And my whole life changed. This is that story. The story of how I found myself here, talking to you.'


Being a fan of the British comedy 'Gavin and Stacey' and the actor James Corden, I thought that this book would be interesting to read. Corden's chatty, easy style of writing is engaging and easy to identify with. There are many times throughout this book in which I laughed out loud. Also as a wannabe writer, I was interested to read about the process that took place when James Corden and Ruth Jones set about writing 'Gavin and Stacey'. The book has loads of photographs of James growing up and also some of the benchmarks (like his character 'Smithy') which have marked his career.

One criticism I would have, would be that on occasion, Corden gushes so much about some of the directors/ actors he has worked with, that to me, he almost sounds insincere.

Is this worth a read?

If you like James Corden or 'Gavin and Stacey', then yes, this is worth a read. This is an easy going, funny book that I enjoyed.