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Posts posted by Mac

  1. Deeply Odd by Dean Koontz


    Coming across a sinister truck driver in the quiet Californian coastal town where he lives, Odd has a vision of three innocent children who will be horribly slaughtered by this man.

    Realising that his intent is now known, the truckie tries to kill Odd, but fails and flees. Odd takes pursuit, and soon discovers that he's up against not a single twisted murderer, but a network of evil men and women whose identities and motivations are mysterious and whose resources seem almost supernatural.
    (Courtesy of Goodreads).


    I've been a loyal fan of Dean Koontz since I was a teenager and have found his novels reasonably consistent in their ability to keep me turning the pages. Granted, an author as prolific as Koontz must surely have his ups and downs, but this novel kept me glued throughout. The pace is good and the character development of the protagonist (Odd Thomas) is nicely shaped.


    I do like the way Dean Koontz views the world and his moral take on it. It's worth reading purely for that, really, although the series of books featuring Odd Thomas are worth reading from the start - beginning with Odd Thomas - as they follow the memoirs of the chap over the course of around 18 months of his rather turbulent life.


    7/10 - another well sculptured book.

  2. I've read some Kelley Armstrong, some Sophie Hannah and all of Ian McEwan's novels (Enduring Love is a superb one to start with - wonderful stuff). In terms of the amount of time you're able to give to reading: who needs work and relationships anyway...?!?


    (So you know, I'm kidding about the "who needs work and relationships" bit...)  :giggle2:

  3. Of course it depends on the context in which the "bad" English is used. In speech I don't mind - an accurate representation of the speech used by someone with a particular dialect etc only adds to the books authenticity. Also books that are written in the narration style. Struggling to think of some examples now (of course :doh: ) but "Paddy Clark Ha Ha" and "The curious Incident of the dog in the nightime" use this device (I think - perhaps someone else can confirm)


    I'd also like to add - I hope any of my previous posts on this thread hasn't offended. It certainly wasn't meant to. As I originally said - I love the way English is spoken so many different ways depending on where you come from - I really do find it fascinating.


    My son does the LOL thing. I'm trying to get him out of the habit, but he's 11 and so has started wanting to be different and not doing what his dad does!


    Whenever I say to the kids I teach "Oh, I lolled out loud!" they just look at me as though I'm mental. This, in turn, makes me rofl on the floor laughing... :giggle2:

  4. I've tried 3 times to find the correct way to reply to this so it doesn't make me sound like I'm trying to start trouble.


    I'll try to make it short and say that several of your posts come across as being offensive to Americans . Some have also trash-talked the Australian accent .


    Very disappointing  . 


     NOT NICE ,folks .   :(


    Hey there. Just so you know, in no way, shape or form, was this topic meant as a dig at Americans. So sorry if it came across as otherwise. I'm from the North of England, so my own grasp of language is poor at the best of times!  ;)

  5. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn


    'What are you thinking, Amy? The question I've asked most often during our marriage, if not out loud, if not to the person who could answer. I suppose these questions stormcloud over every marriage: What are you thinking? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do?' Just how well can you ever know the person you love? This is the question that Nick Dunne must ask himself on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary, when his wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police immediately suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they aren't his. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone. So what did really did happen to Nick's beautiful wife? And what was left in that half-wrapped box left so casually on their marital bed? In this novel, marriage truly is the art of war...


    Wow. What a terrific book. Characterisation is unbelievably good, pulling you through huge ambiguity throughout the entire novel. I found it challenging in a very good way, and it made me question a lot of how I felt about the characters, all the while thinking what an incredibly talented author Flynn is. I can't describe a lot of what cracks off in this novel for fear of spoiling it. My advice? Read it, and read it when you don't have a lot else on, for it will eat your time.


    10/10 A real, proper belter!

  6. I don't think I've ever read/heard anyone say "I could care less" - only couldn't!


    I do hate the word gotten when used in books set in the UK though -  don't have a problem with it in books set elsewhere, but it's not an English word, although it does seem  to be creeping into common parlance here.


    I also hate "can I get...?" instead of "can I have" - but that's more a verbal thing, I think.


    This is becoming commonplace, particularly in coffee shops. I make a very grumpy point of asking "May I please have a doobriewhatsit?" in polite earshot of the muppet who said "Can I get a Frappalappadingdong?"  ;)


    It`s more a spoken thing this, but i dislike people raising the tone of their voice  at the end of a sentence, making it sound like a question eg "so I could put the cash towards my degree". It makes it sound like a question but it is not.


    I find this really annoying, too? The raised inflection? At, like, the end of every, like, sentence? What? I'm, like, what, like, massively irritating?  :doh:


    The 'could care less' thing annoys me no end but I don't thing I've ever seen it in a book. It seems a common phrase amongst American blogs, forum posts etc from what I have read. I always wondered if I had been taught the phrase 'couldn't care less' incorrectly even though it made far more sense to me.


     Exactly! If one could care less about something, it therefore indicates that one actually has a definable level of care about that something. If one could not care less about something, it illustrates the point that one couldn't give two hoots about it. I see it quite a lot in thriller/crime novels and I get terribly annoyed with myself for getting annoyed by...oh, you get the picture... :banghead:

  7. Here's a thing. Surely when a character (and, in my experience, generally an American character, which might be important) says "I could care less about blah blah waffle..." it means that they have a modicum of care about blah blah waffle. This does make sense, doesn't it? It's always in a context of them really not giving a monkey's whatsit about blah blah waffle, yet my logical, rational brain will not let me breeze over this.


    I also struggle with the word "gotten", particularly if it's written by a British author.


    Does anyone else have pet peeves about particular foibles in novels?


    Should I be taken out into a lonely field to be shot?

  8. The Savage Altar by Asa Larsson


    On the floor of a church in northern Sweden, the body of a man lies mutilated and defiled–and in the night sky, the aurora borealis dances as the snow begins to fall....So begins Åsa Larsson’s spellbinding thriller, winner of Sweden’s Best First Crime Novel Award and an international literary sensation.

    Rebecka Martinsson is heading home to Kiruna, the town she’d left in disgrace years before. A Stockholm attorney, Rebecka has a good reason to return: her friend Sanna, whose brother has been horrifically murdered in the revivalist church his charisma helped create. Beautiful and fragile, Sanna needs someone like Rebecka to remove the shadow of guilt that is engulfing her, to forestall an ambitious prosecutor and a dogged policewoman. But to help her friend, and to find the real killer of a man she once adored and is now not sure she ever knew, Rebecka must relive the darkness she left behind in Kiruna, delve into a sordid conspiracy of deceit, and confront a killer whose motives are dark, wrenching, and impossible to guess....(
    courtesy of Goodreads)


    This is the first of Asa Larsson's novels I've read, and it didn't disappoint. I found the setting very atmospheric and the pace was perfectly set. I get somewhat irritated by the tag "If you like Stieg Larsson, then you'll love Asa Larsson" because they are nothing alike at all, apart from the fact that it's set in Sweden and the authors share a (common) surname.


    Saying that, the characters are flawed and well realised, making one's investment worthwhile, because it's all so much more believable. I will happily move on to the next book.


    If you enjoy Scandicrime, give this lady a go, because it's worth the time.



  9. Which Wells book do you think is the best? Ive been looking reading another but im not sure if the others grab me as much. I wanted another old classic to read next so ive gone for The Purple Cloud by M P Shiel. I'll start that one shortly so fingers crossed its as good as my recent reads. I have a very eclectic taste but anything Fantasy/scifi/YA generally interests me 


    Definitely go for War of the Worlds - you couldn't get more classic (nor Victorian!) than that. It's brilliant. :readingtwo:

  10. Just a note to say ive changed my rating to out of 5. Everywhere else that i review my books are out of 5 so seems easier to keep it all the same. Anyway I've finished the Time Machine, heres my review


    Time Machine by H G Wells ~ Rate 4/5


    About the book (Amazon)


    When a Victorian scientist propels himself into the year 802,701 AD, he is initially delighted to find that suffering has been replaced by beauty, contentment and peace. Entranced at first by the Eloi, an elfin species descended from man, he soon realises that this beautiful people are simply remnants of a once-great culture - now weak and childishly afraid of the dark. But they have every reason to be afraid: in deep tunnels beneath their paradise lurks another race descended from humanity - the sinister Morlocks. And when the scientist's time machine vanishes, it becomes clear he must search these tunnels, if he is ever to return to his own era.


    My Thoughts


    I really really liked this book, it was short and sweet and i loved it. It keeps you gripped and reading despite it being so short. I flew through it enjoyed every moment but didn't have that disappointment when i released id come to the end (it looks longer because of the notes at the back) as i found it was rounded off nicely (as i also found with The Isldand of Dr. Moreau) Defiantly will be reading more Wells this year!   


    Wells is great reading. I first read his work when I was in my early teens and I yummed them up. Hope you enjoy the others!

  11. Still Missing  Beth Gutcheon


    First Published in 1981, Still Missing was translated into 14 languages & has been continously in print in the USA ever since. In 1983 it was made into a film called Without A Trace starring Kate Nelligan. I first heard about it on Radio4's A Good Read & added it to my Amazon wishlist where it has remained for quite some while, mainly because at £12 for the paperback i felt it was a bit too pricey then by a lucky chance i found a copy at my local library. The book is about Alex a 6 year old boy who goes missing one morning walking the 2 blocks from his home to school, the subsequent investigation & the effect his disappearance has on his mother & father, family, friends & local community. I would compare this book to the wonderful Red Leaves Thomas H. Cook but to be honest it completely blows it out of the water. This is simply one of the best books i've ever read it's all of those literary cliches heart-rending, an emotional rollercoaster, gripping to the last page & more. 




    See, here's another book to add to my TBR shelf. This isn't healthy... :giggle2:

  12. I don't want to take the words out of his mouth but I think VF was meaning that he swapped extreme Muslim views for extreme Christian views.



    I have a similar distrust to a certain extent but I find religion so interesting that I read a lot about it. Some of it is fascinating so dive right in. How are you enjoying The Savage Altar?


    I'm liking it. There's a tag on the front which says "If you like Stieg Larsson, you'll love Asa Larsson" which is misleading, because there two are incomparable. This is more of a thriller-by-numbers, but I'm quite busy at the moment and enjoy the fact that I can pick it up, read a few chapters (they're all quite short) and then maybe not pick it up again for a couple of days. I'll write my thoughts on this book in my Mac Reads thread.  :readingtwo:

  13. I've read P. P. Brennnan - Anxiety Management: The Secrets Of Completely Eliminating Anxiety From Your Life. This was a short Kindle freebie, some information about anxiety and how to feel less stressed. This book wasn't of any help and I found it rubbish to be honest. If it hadn't been so short, I would've abandoned it or flicked through it quicker. I kept waiting for it to be useful but it wasn't. I'm not saying someone else can't find value in it, but I couldn't. There are much better books about this subject out there.


    Rating: * (1/5)


    I'm not very good with self-help books, to be honest. I dealt with my debilitating anxiety after eventually becoming unconscious, waking up and thinking 'Hmmm, this is unusual!', calling the doctor and, finally, regularly meeting with a CBT specialist doctor. All sorted. Pretty much, anyway...


    Hope all's well with you.