Sunday, April 14, 2013

Present and Present!

I haven't blogged on books since January - I have had my own drama and there is no apology!

I attended my bookclub in February and was there but in 'screensaver' mode - not fully engaged but looking like I was. In March we met and had a surprise visitor - no not the Sunday Times columnist who poked fun at our themed evenings, but one of our precious 'old' members who now resides in the big city where folk are far too sophisticated for their own good! We laughed .....and laughed....and then some more. We also discussed that none of us are getting younger and at some date in the near future hair nets and facial hair may be a problem. Their was a consensus that hair nets will not be worn to book club - unless the theme is old age! A clever strategy has been devised so that members can let one another know that they need to visit the salon - a bookmark in the shape of a moustache is to be designed and discreetly left in your book. The thought of receiving such a book mark has sent me scurrying into Clicks to purchase a 10x magnifying mirror!

Books that are getting the thumbs up are:-

The Housemaids Daughter by Barbara Mutch.

 Love and Duty collide in Cradock during the apartheid years in a beautifully told story reminiscent of The Help.Cathleen Harrington leaves her home in Ireland in 1919 to travel to South Africa and marry the fiance she has not seen for five years. Isolated and estranged in a harsh landscape, she finds solace in her diary and the friendship of her housemaid's daughter, Ada. Cathleen recognises in her someone she can love and respond to in a way that she cannot with her own husband and daughter. Under Cathleen's tutelage, Ada grows into an accomplished pianist, and a reader who cannot resist turning the pages of the diary, discovering the secrets Cathleen sought to hide.
When Ada is compromised and finds she is expecting a mixed-race child, she flees her home, determined to spare Cathleen the knowledge of her betrayal, and the disgrace that would descend upon the family. Scorned within her own community, Ada is forced to carve a life for herself, her child, and her music. But Cathleen still believes in Ada, and risks the constraints of apartheid to search for her and persuade her to return with her daughter. Beyond the cruelty, there is love, hope and forgiveness.
Feildwork by Mischa Berlinski
Set in Thailand, this is a brilliantly original and page-turning first novel of anthropologists, missionaries, demon possession, sexual taboos, murder, and one obsessed young American reporter. When his girlfriend takes a job in Thailand, Mischa goes along for the ride, planning only to enjoy himself as much as possible. But when he hears about the suicide of a young woman, Martiya van der Leun, in the Thai prison where she was serving a life sentence for murder, what begins as mild curiosity becomes an obsession. It is clear that Martiya was guilty, but what was it that led her to kill? this book is very much in demand and I have bought a Kindle copy as I know that I will wait ages otherwise for it.
Gone Girl by Gillain Flynn is getting great reviews at book club and elsewhere. 
 An utterly gripping thriller (EMERALD STREET )

Gone Girl should be the big poolside read this year. Fresh out om paperback, it's a page-turning abduction mystery with an awful lot of twists. (MAIL ON SUNDAY )

A tautly written thriller about the unravelling of a marriage that is deservedly topping the bestseller charts. (THE OBSERVER )

The story of a husband searching for his vanished wife has everything - psychological acuity, humour, an unflagging pace and more twists than you could hope for in your most serpentine dreams...a sumptuous, satisfying read. (STYLIST )

The story-telling is incredibly compelling, with the cunning opening mystery soon turning down unpredictable routes, while the characters are superbly believable. No wonder it's the book that everyone seems to be reading. (Boyd Hilton HEAT MAGAZINE )

If you haven't yet caught up with this word-of-mouth bestseller - about a woman's mysterious disappearance and the secrets she and her husband are keeping - get hold of it soon. It really does live up to the hype. (WOMAN MAGAZINE )
My turn to buy books this month and I was spoilt for choice - Read my selections next week.

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