Monday, 8 February 2016

Instagram Book Review Five


Here are the last few books I read in 2015 (hence a few Christmassy ones!) and the first couple of 2016. For more up to date book reviews follow me on instagram @whereisharriet.

A Blink of the Screen - collected short stories by Terry Pratchett. This was a really enjoyable collection - a mix of familiar Discworld characters and some pre-Discworld stuff, including his first published story from when he was 13! I loved the Discworld stories the most, but it was interesting to read his earlier stuff and see hints of what he would become most famous for in them.

Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. This book was totally my thing - I love a good magic-is-secretly-all-around-us tale, and this reminded me of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, or something from Tom Holt or Jim Butcher, all of whom I love. It's the story of a police officer who finds himself apprenticed to the (very small) Magical Crimes division of the London Met, and it was a funny, easy read. I am looking forward to picking up the sequels in the new year!

The Santa Klaus Murder by Mavis Doriel Hay. Something a bit seasonal! The Melbury family gather for Christmas, only for an unknown guest dressed as Santa to shoot Sir Oswald Melbury on Christmas Day. This is written and set in the 1930s and is a pretty classic English country house whodunnit. It was ok but nothing special, not terribly inventive, and not a patch on Agatha Christie, which I am reading next for my book club.

Hercule Poirot's Christmas by Agatha Christie. This is my book club book this month and although I've read it before I'd forgotten just how good it is. It's a Christmas English country house murder just like the last book I read - and very similar - a disliked patriarch is murdered at Christmas and everyone in the family has a motive - but 100% better written and more inventive. There is a reason Agatha Christie is the queen of crime!

Mr Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. This was my book club book, chosen by me this month. Unfortunately only one other person made it to book club and she hadn't finished it! That was a bit of a shame as I really enjoyed this book and had looked forward to talking about it. It's the story of an out of work designer who takes a job doing the night shift in a 24-hour bookshop, but ends up being drawn into a mystery involving the owner and patrons of the bookshop. The characters were lovable, funny and believable and the mystery kept me hooked.

You're Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day. First book of 2016 klaxon! I am a big fan girl of Felicia's work, but I didn't really know much about her as a person so I was really excited to read her autobiography. Good news - I loved it! She is obviously amazingly talented and driven, it was exhausting just reading about everything she's done from being a violin prodigy to an actress and business owner, but at the same time she came across as so down to earth, it just made me want to be bffs with her.

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