Category: Uncategorized

  • Review: A Girl Made of Air by Nydia Hetherington

    This beautifully written debut novel follows an unamed tight-rope walker (called Mouse by her friend) – her ups, her downs, and her bad but well intended decisions. The magical realism is nicely played, and the story structure is excellently created. The reason why I gave it 4 stars and not 5, was the narrators voice […]

  • Review: The Doors of Eden by Adrian Tchaikovsky

    This is the second book by Adrian that I’ve read, the first being Walking to Aldebaran. Both are well written, with strong plotting, but this one would be my least favourite. The Doors of Eden took a long time to not go very far. The cat & mouse chasing, well, rats & trolls, could’ve been […]

  • Review: A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill

    A Cosmology of Monsters is described as a literary horror novel, which isn’t a bad description. The plotting is strong, especially for a first novel, but I found the writing style barren and unemotional. I got used to it by the end, but it did feel like I was reading a newspaper account rather than […]

  • Review: The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

    The Vanishing Half delves into identity – does colour, or sex, define you? Or is that just the given, and you can identify and become whoever you choose? The book spans 30-40 years – following the lives of two young twins living in Jim Crow southern states, where being black means you can be killed […]

  • Review: The Better Half: On the Genetic Superiority of Women by Sharon Moalem

    Men have XY chromosomes, women have two Xs. That extra X gives women a level of redundancy – if something bad happens, whether that be dodgy DNA or an infectious disease, the female body can chose between those two Xs and select the stronger. As a result, women live longer healthier lives. That’s the jist […]

  • Review: The Unlikely Escape of Uriah Heep by H.G. Parry

    I enjoyed The Unlikely Escape of Uriah Heep – just not as much as I hoped I would. There’s a lot to like – a large dose of fantasy, interesting characters, some good debate on Dickens’s fiction – but there was a lot I struggled with to. The dialogue was too dense and too verbose, […]

  • Review: Mindful Drinking: How Cutting Down Can Change Your Life by Rosamund Dean

    I’ve been meditating now for a couple of years, and have been significantly over-drinking for three decades, so when Kevin Rose (a guy I have a lot of time for) mentioned this book on his podcast I thought I’d give it a try. One key aspect of this book is it’s not about stopping drinking, […]

  • Review: Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo

    I must admit this book was a disappointment. I normally love Man Booker shortlisted novels, but this became a slog. Independent (though loosely linked) chapters detail a specific woman – mostly black, mostly non-binary/LGBQT. Each chapter in isolation is well written and interesting. The problem is that with a dozen or so of them, without […]

  • Review: Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck

    This book is praised everywhere – from Tim Ferriss, Derek Sivers, Seth Godin, the list goes on, so it’s frustrating that I found it a huge struggle. The first half is full of trite, one-paragraph case studies that go along the lines of, “Timmy struggles to adapt, he’s got a fixed mindset”, “Evie likes to […]

  • Review: Equal: A Story of Women, Men and Money by Carrie Gracie

    This is an interesting book about Carrie Gracie’s battle to get pay equality at the BBC. I’m a strong believer in equality, whether that be religious, ethnicity, gender, or whatever, everyone should be paid on the merit of their output, and not by any other criteria. At the end of the book, Carrie lists some […]