Friday, 1 July 2016

The Boy That Never Was Review

I read this way back in February last year when I was in hospital, at first I was unsure because it's not my usual type of book but I was interested to read it as the author, Karen Perry, is actually the pen name of two Dublin based writers - Paul Perry and Karen Gillece. I think this is quite an interesting concept and I don't know why but I always love reading books set in Ireland from Irish authors...there's something comforting about it, no matter what the subject is. Perhaps because of my Irish family? Although there's certainly nothing comforting about this book.

the boy that never was review, irish authors, karen perry

Based on the aftermath of their son's disappearance during an earthquake in Tangier, Robin and Harry are trying to rebuild their lives back home in Ireland. Robin has accepted that their little boy died but Harry is convinced he's still alive as his body was never recovered. Up until about halfway through the book I thought it was just one of those family dramas that's just all about emotions so I found it a little dull. But then came a twist that turned it into a thriller so it got a lot more enjoyable for me after that point. Luckily it's a short book so you don't have long to go before it starts getting a bit juicier. 

I didn't really care for a lot of the characters, although I liked Robin and kind of wished I'd known a little more about Cozimo...I felt he was quite an interesting character but he was in it too briefly to really get to know him. The ending did disappoint me a little; what happens in the book is dramatic but could happen in real life if you get what I mean and I just feel that the end turned it into something OTT. 

Overall it wasn't a bad read, I liked how the narrative switched from Harry to Robin every chapter but it was just maybe not my usual kind of thing. I feel like I'd like to watch a TV adaptation of this though, I think the whole thing is like one of those two-parter BBC dramas or something (which I personally love because I'm old on the inside!)

Have you read this before? Can you recommend any good Irish authors?

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

An Unexpected Post

Look at me, so classy with my Primark bag full of recycling in shot! Although that's gone now (it's been replaced by more mess) these photos were from a long while back when I was just going to a hospital appointment I think. In fact that's where I definitely was going because I remember now these shoes being a pain in the ass to get on and off! They weigh me every time at the CF Clinic and every time I forget to just wear shoes you can easily slip off.

Coat | Marks & Spencer (similar here)
Jumper | Daisy Street (similar here)
Jeans | J Brand (check out BrandAlley for bargains!)
Shoes | Converse
Bag | Mulberry

There's no way I could wear this outfit now because it's too hot but I didn't want a waste of my wonderful photos (HAHAHA) but hopefully it'll still be relevant because it's raining at the mo so someone somewhere reading this is probably a bit chilly?

OH and I am in hospital right now, got ill over the weekend and am currently typing this on my phone in the High Dependency Unit - such larks! Will update you properly on that but for now I just felt like not breaking my 'being good at regular posting' thing I've had going on the past couple of weeks as this was in my drafts :-) Hope you're well!! 

Friday, 24 June 2016

The Secret Speech Review

The Secret Speech has been sitting in my to-read pile since I got it for my birthday last year but since so much of my reading time was dedicated to the A Song Of Ice And Fire series I've not long gotten round to this. It's the sequel to Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith, a book I really loved (see review here) so I was super keen to see if this matched up.

Leo Demidov is back and trying to play happy families in post-Stalin Russia. One of my complaints about the previous book was that the ending was too clichéd and happy (I know, I don't know why I'm so mean) but it appears all is not as it seems and Leo's family home isn't quite as idyllic as he and his wife Raisa would like. Despite trying to lead an honourable life now, his past as an officer for the state is beginning to catch up with him putting all of their lives in danger. Again, this book is based on real events (Krushchev's speech, the uprising in Hungary) and I found this interesting as I'd not read any fictional books set in this era. I bet in real life it was a weird time so I'd definitely like to read more about it!

I think Child 44 was more of a head spin but The Secret Speech was still good enough to keep me gripped and it only took me a few days to finish it (rare for me these days!) There's a final book in the trilogy, Agent 6, that I want to get my hands on although at first glance it seems a bit over the top - there were times I thought the first two books were a bit far fetched but this seems like something else! But I think where it mixes in real life history I forget that it's not actually a true story - it's a crime/action fictional novel so it's going to be a bit OTT! I can't wait to read it though, I've become quite attached to our characters - especially Zoya, I hope we see her develop more as a person as she seems quite kick-ass. I do like the fact that Leo is so flawed too, The Secret Speech reveals just how much of a horrid person he was so it's kind of taught me a bit about myself and how I feel about forgiveness etc - bit deep, I know! So although it has all these crazy action scenes and it's quite violent so there's always something to keep you on your toes but there's quite an interesting psychological aspect to the book too. We have men who have done terrible things trying to atone whilst the people they committed these atrocities against are out to get revenge so it does blur the line between who is good and who is bad. Although I found the 'villains' to be very clichéd at times, I really liked that our 'heroes' are flawed.

All in all I'd recommend this if you're a fan of twisty, action-packed thrillers.

Have you read this book? What thrillers can you recommend? 

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