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Posts posted by jynx

  1. This is the latest in a long line of Agatha Raisin mysteries (& to my shame, I've only read the first 4 of the series before this one - I can't seem to find them in the local shops!) & I found this lurking in my local library. As with the previous books, I've developed a strange liking to the heroine - her faults making her all the more likeable & I wasn't disappointed in this latest installment of her life either. I also liked the fact that even though I've missed so many books in between I was able to pick up on existing plotlines within her home village & her relationships with the other regular characters. It seems that the characters are consistent & well-developed, their relationships detailed well rather than being over-emphasised & the insight into Agatha's psyche is just as enlightening, frightening & amusing as ever!


    The given synopsis is as follows:


    'Agatha Raisin's ex-husband James is engaged to be married to a beautiful young woman and Agatha has kindly been invited to the wedding. This is a difficult pill to swallow & to take her mind off it Agatha begins a flirtation with Sylvan, a Frenchman she met at James's engagement party. For further distraction she decides upon a holiday & flies off to Istanbul, where unfortunately she bumps into James & his fiancee, not once but twice - convincing him she is stalking them. So when the bride is murdered on her wedding day, naturally Agatha is Suspect Number One - though the situation is quickly turned on its head when the mother of the bride engages Agatha to take on the case of her murdered daughter! And then, somehow, Agatha's own life seems to be in danger as she sets about trying to solve the mystery of the dead bride, while defending herself (rather half-heartedly) against the advances of a very attractive & determined Frenchman.'


    As a whole, this book was highly enjoyable, I whizzed through it in a couple of days & was thoroughly immersed in the plotline, I enjoyed the different locations described this time round, finding it interesting in the way that Agatha interacted abroad rather than in her home village. The plot had sufficient twists & revelations to keep me interested, although I was disappointed that I guessed who the murderer was & the main plotline, although it was hinted at heavily throughout the majority of the last half of the book. There were, however, some interesting sidelines introduced - between for example Toni & Agatha - their relationship was looked at in a little more detail rather than just leaving it as employer & employee.


    All in all, it was an enjoyable book, all the loose ends tied up nicely & the main characters' lives were opened up enough to leave scope for more books to follow. I've started hunting the previous books down on Ebay as I do find these light enough to just grab & read for light entertainment.

  2. Hi, I've been lent The Faithless by Martina Cole & am having huge problems getting into it. My friend says that its best to start with her earlier works as she found them more enjoyable than the latest works. Has anyone else read a cross section of her books & if so could you give me an idea of which ones are better to start with? Thanks

  3. “Immensely charming, immensely uplifting, I would recommend it to everyone” Marian Keyes.



    This is a snapshot of a nearly 60yr old’s life, told in the form of a diary, detailing the approach of & her 60th birthday & her refusal to grow old gracefully & accept the ravishes of time. She details her relationships with her family & friends coping from the mundane to the tragic.


    The synopsis on the back of the book reads as follows:


    ‘Too young to get whisked away by a Stannah Stairlift, or to enjoy the luxury of a walk-in bath (but not so much that she doesn’t enjoy comfortable shoes), Marie is all the same getting on in years - and she’s thrilled about it. She’s a bit preoccupied about whether to give up sex - Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! - but there are compensations, like falling in love with her baby grandson, and maybe falling in love with someone else too?

    Curmudgeonly, acute, touching & funny, this diary is what happens when grumpy old women meet Bridget Jones'


    I must say, I borrowed this from the library based on the synopsis & have never read any other Virginia Ironside’s books, but I was very pleasantly surprised - I devoured the book in a couple of days & loved every second of it - from the funny (using a thermometer to sign a cheque) through the dinner parties & the redecoration of her room - there was always a passage to lift the reader’s mood. I found that the character’s attitude to aging was refreshing (similar to a bucket of ice water to the face) & must admit I think I might adopt this attitude as I approach her age! I loved the fact that she grew in confidence - realizing that you can be yourself, you don’t need other people’s affirmation or approval. To feel happy & content with your lot in life. She hinted at a having led a very colorful life & that she was determined to continue to live her life the way she wanted to rather than bowing down to the pressure of ‘you can’t do that - you’re too old’ scenario.


    In conclusion, I loved this book & would definitely read it again! I’m also planning on searching out some more of Virginia Ironside’s books.


    I’m curious as to whether anyone else has read this book & whether they enjoyed it a much as I did?

  4. My favourite all time author is Terry Pratchett - I adore his books mainly because of the richness of the characters & the fact that he has created a whole world which continues in each book - its like going home each time I start reading one!! David Eddings is a close second with the Belgariad because of the depth of the characters & the bond that forms as the main character grows up physically & mentally. Finally I love horror - I grew up on Stephen King books & slowly got into Shaun Hutson, Graham Masterson & Richard Laymon. I like more psychological horror rather than blood & gore to scare me though!

  5. So, I know my list is going to be ever-growing but here's what I'm working on at the moment:


    Game Over - Adele Parks

    The Faithless - Martina Cole


    My current book pile consists of:


    The Life of Lee - Lee Evans

    The Book of Loss - Julith Jedamus

    The Dead Women of Juarez - Sam Hawken

    There Goes the Bride - M C Beaton


    & finally the book I most want to read (& can't get from the library!) is A Streetcat Named Bob by James Bowen.