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Frankie reads 2013

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I'm glad that you are going to read other work by Coetzee despite not loving the book. You are correct about the characters though, their actions are bewildering at times.

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Well, 3/5 isn't too bad for The Remains of the Day! :D  I had seen the film first, and It took me a couple of readings to really pick some of the subtleties of the book, but it's one of my favourites now.  I can't remember, frankie, have you read any more Kazuo Ishiguro?  I know he is an author that quite often people either take to or just don't.  :)

 

3/5 means 'I liked it' in my books, so I don't think it's bad at all :) I didn't know there's a film, would you recommend it?

 

I've previously read A Pale View of Hills and I really enjoyed that one, so I was perhaps expecting a lot from this novel, too. But I think it's great that Ishiguro can obviously cover different kinds of themes and topics, it shows he's very versatile. I have a copy of Never Let Me Go so I'm definitely going to read more by him in the future.

 

 

I've added Ugly to my wishlist, could be an interesting book to read :).

 

I hope you can get a hold of a copy soon, and enjoy the book! :) It's a difficult subject matter, but Clare is a very inspirational girl!

 

 

Hi Frankie, i listened to an interview on the radio awhile back with Constance Briscoe & was full of admiration for her. It's wonderful how some people can rise above their circumstances & go on do amazing things isn't it. Totally agree with your review of Mr Wicher i thought i was going to absolutely love the book but when i got round to reading it i was so disappointed i found it so dull & boring more like reading a detailed report of the crime than a work of fiction where you get to know the characters, not my sort of book at all. I did read The Queen of Whale Cay by the same author & i enjoyed that much more though.

 

I know what you mean, it's great when people who've been abused can deal with what's been done to them and realise it's not their own fault in any way, and they go out and make better lives for themselves. I know it can't be easy and some people aren't able to cope. Is Briscoe well known in the UK? I'd never heard of her or the book when I bought my copy at the secondhand bookstore.

 

I'm happy I'm not the only one who struggled with Mr Whicher! I think I've also been spoiled by John Boyne and his book Crippen. Now that's a perfect true crime fictionalization! The bar's been set very high with that book, so it's all the more obvious Mr Whicher couldn't compete.

 

I had Summerscale's Mrs Robinson's Disgrace on my wishlist but after finishing Whicher I thought I'd cross it off the list. But then I read the amazon synopsis on MRD and figured it's not the same kind of book but something completely different, and I wasn't sure if I should judge Summerscale's talent based on this one book alone. I'm happy you told me you enjoyed The Queen of Whale Cay a lot more, I think I'm keeping MRD on the wishlist :) Thanks!

 

 

 

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I'm glad that you are going to read other work by Coetzee despite not loving the book. You are correct about the characters though, their actions are bewildering at times.

 

It sometimes read like a bad dream: 'is this really happening? Did he really say that?'. There were a few 'WTF' moments, out loud. And how Lurie kept on thinking about doing the nasty all the time everywhere.. It was bordering on a poor camp character :D

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THANK YOU for the warning re Disgrace and dogs. 

I have only read Elizabeth Costello by Coetzee, and while I can say I liked it, I was not enamoured by it.  Although I think I can safely recommend the book.  :wacko:

 

Brasco sounds really good, I'll have to Amazon it. :D

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#7

 

The Suspicions of Mr Whicher

by Kate Summerscale

 

I think I haven't previously added this one to my wishlist for the reasons in your review. It's a title I've heard a few times but I remember reading something about it that made me think it wasn't my kind of book, even though the cover and title led me to think otherwise.

 

 

#12

 

Donnie Brasco - A True Story by FBI Agent Joseph D. Pistone

 

I read this years ago, and really enjoyed it, though I don't remember much about it. One thing (actually the only thing) I recall was when he was in a Japanese restaurant and was asked to remove his shoes, but he had his tape recorder in there. I bet he was pooping himself!! I must read it again at some point. I still have it sitting on my bookshelf.

 

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I know what you mean, it's great when people who've been abused can deal with what's been done to them and realise it's not their own fault in any way, and they go out and make better lives for themselves. I know it can't be easy and some people aren't able to cope. Is Briscoe well known in the UK? I'd never heard of her or the book when I bought my copy at the secondhand bookstore.

 

 

I'm happy I'm not the only one who struggled with Mr Whicher! I think I've also been spoiled by John Boyne and his book Crippen. Now that's a perfect true crime fictionalization! The bar's been set very high with that book, so it's all the more obvious Mr Whicher couldn't compete.

 

I had Summerscale's Mrs Robinson's Disgrace on my wishlist but after finishing Whicher I thought I'd cross it off the list. But then I read the amazon synopsis on MRD and figured it's not the same kind of book but something completely different, and I wasn't sure if I should judge Summerscale's talent based on this one book alone. I'm happy you told me you enjoyed The Queen of Whale Cay a lot more, I think I'm keeping MRD on the wishlist :) Thanks!

 

I don't think she's particularly well known although i have seen her book, Ugly, on quite a few supermarket shelves so i think it was popular over here. The interview i heard was on Woman's Hour which is a programme which deals with issues that affect women or may be of interest mainly to women , hence the name, but i wouldn't say she's a well known author if you see what i mean.

 

Crippen sounds like a book i'd like , i shall keep my eye out for it or i might even buy it for my hubby as he likes that sort of thing then i can read it after him  :devcat:

 


 

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Yay you loved The Beach. It's a real favourite of mine. I also read Ugly some years back and found it an amazing book that stayed with me a long time. It's really disturbing but so amazing how she pulls through it all. I found myself rooting for her all the way through. It also struck me that all the kind people, and all the kind actions stood out like bright lights against such a dark background. I thought you neve know how a small kindness you show someone in a day could be a real highlight in someone's day or even in their life.

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THANK YOU for the warning re Disgrace and dogs. 

I have only read Elizabeth Costello by Coetzee, and while I can say I liked it, I was not enamoured by it.  Although I think I can safely recommend the book.  :wacko:

 

Brasco sounds really good, I'll have to Amazon it. :D

 

I wonder if Coetzee is one of those authors who deals with very difficult and/or disturbing subject matters, and therefore the reader is more concerned about all the issues than the actual book and Coetzee's writing and talent. Hmmm.

 

I would definitely recommend Brasco! :) 

 

I think I haven't previously added this one to my wishlist for the reasons in your review. It's a title I've heard a few times but I remember reading something about it that made me think it wasn't my kind of book, even though the cover and title led me to think otherwise.

 

It's pretty safe to say I wouldn't recommend it. :shrug:

 

I read this years ago, and really enjoyed it, though I don't remember much about it. One thing (actually the only thing) I recall was when he was in a Japanese restaurant and was asked to remove his shoes, but he had his tape recorder in there. I bet he was pooping himself!! I must read it again at some point. I still have it sitting on my bookshelf.

 

 

Yep, he usually went without the tape recorders because obviously it's really incriminating if they find out about them, it's pretty much a death sentence at that point. I remember reading somewhere (quite possibly wikipedia) that one of the reasons why Pistone was such a good fit for the job was that he didn't sweat under pressure :D

 

I don't think she's particularly well known although i have seen her book, Ugly, on quite a few supermarket shelves so i think it was popular over here. The interview i heard was on Woman's Hour which is a programme which deals with issues that affect women or may be of interest mainly to women , hence the name, but i wouldn't say she's a well known author if you see what i mean.

 

I suppose she's more well known for being a barrister, that being her first and foremost occupation :)

 

I read this on wiki: "In October 2012 Briscoe was suspended from the judiciary after having been arrested and questioned by police." I wonder what that was about, it didn't go into specifics. I should google for news reports.

 

Crippen sounds like a book i'd like , i shall keep my eye out for it or i might even buy it for my hubby as he likes that sort of thing then i can read it after him  :devcat:"

 

 

Crippen is, in my opinion, brilliant! It was my second favorite book of 2011, topped only by the magnificient Room by Emma Donoghue :)  But I should not go on and on about it, you've already tempted to buy the book so my work was done, now if I keep talking it up you'll get really excited about it and then what if you shan't like it? :o:blush:

 

 

Yay you loved The Beach. It's a real favourite of mine. I also read Ugly some years back and found it an amazing book that stayed with me a long time. It's really disturbing but so amazing how she pulls through it all. I found myself rooting for her all the way through. It also struck me that all the kind people, and all the kind actions stood out like bright lights against such a dark background. I thought you neve know how a small kindness you show someone in a day could be a real highlight in someone's day or even in their life.

 

I'm definitely happy I read The Beach, and it was definitely thanks to everyone on here who's been singing the book's praises :)

 

Briscoe did meet some really wonderful and kind people on the way, didn't she. You never know how small a thing you do might make such a difference in someone else's life, like you said. And given her background, she could've really ended up having such a different life, it's always inspiring how a person takes the higher road and decides they deserve better and will want better for their possible future offspring, too.

 

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#14.

 

Disordered Minds

by Minette Walters

 

 

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Blurb: In 1970 Howard Stamp, a retarded twenty-year-old, was convicted on disputed evidence of brutally murdering his grandmother in her Dorset home. Less than three years later he was dead, driven to suicide by self-hatred and relentless bullying by other prisoners. A fate befitting a murderer, perhaps, but what if he was innocent?

When thirty-four-year-old anthropologist Dr Jonathan Hughes re-examines Stamp's case for a book on injustice, his research into the written evidence leads him to believe that Stamp was wrongly convicted. But is the forgotten story of one friendless young man compelling enought to persuade Jonathan to confront the real murderer?

One person believes it is. George Gardener, sixty, has been trying to bring Stampäs case to public attention for years and has unearthed new evidence that might exonerate him. But Gardener needs the young academic on board if it is to be used to maximum effect.

On the face of it, there is no similarity between the illiterate Stamp and the highly educated Hughes, yet their lives resonate through their damaged childhoods and their mutual sense of exclusion. With the threat of war in Iraq dominating British hearts and minds, there begins a battle far closer to home: an attempt to prove a grotesque miscarriage of injustice.

 

 

Thoughts: I haven't read a Minette Walters novel in a long time. I used to really enjoy her books in the 90s. My favorites were The Sculptress and Dark Room, in particular. And I loved the miniseries they made of some of her novels, for example The Ice House. Then I read The Tinder Box and didn't much enjoy it, and after that I've passed all Walters novels this far. The blurb on this book sounded really interesting, though, so I bought it from a secondhand bookshop some years ago and now picked it up.

 

I guess I would say I've now sussed out what Walters is about as a crime writer. As far as I can remember, her books are not action filled. Nothing major happens in the present day, all the happening is in the past and in the crime itself. And when it comes to the crimes, there's not really that much room to operate, either. It's basically the same thing over and over again: the 'culprit' is someone in a small group of people, there aren't any outsider surprises, and then it's 'he said she said', and a lot of fine tuning. Who's lying, who's telling the truth. After a few hundred pages it gets a bit old. This novel was 594 pages long and I think it could've done with some editing.

 

I still have a copy of The Echo on my bookcase but after that I think I'm done with Walters. I understand why others would like the types of books she writes, but I guess I've grown past this subgenre or what have you and am more content with something else.

 

2/5

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I'm finally under TBR 530, I'm so happy and pleased! :exc:  Only 30 books to get to under 500. What's more, I've done some progress with the 1001 Books To Read Before You Die -challenge this year, I've already read 3 books off the list and I'm currently reading a fourth one. After that I only need to read two more to get to 100/1001. I haven't been this meticulous with my reading and challenges in a long time, it's really weird but in a good way :D

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I'm finally under TBR 530, I'm so happy and pleased! :exc:  Only 30 books to get to under 500. What's more, I've done some progress with the 1001 Books To Read Before You Die -challenge this year, I've already read 3 books off the list and I'm currently reading a fourth one. After that I only need to read two more to get to 100/1001. I haven't been this meticulous with my reading and challenges in a long time, it's really weird but in a good way :D

 

Yay :D well done you on getting your TBR down! Mine has kind of gone up slightly . . . :P but in my defence it was the boyfriend that brought me books not me!

 

And well done on your challenge too thats a great ammont read already!

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Yay :D well done you on getting your TBR down! Mine has kind of gone up slightly . . . :P but in my defence it was the boyfriend that brought me books not me!

 

Oh boy... :D You have a great boyfriend for being so nice as to buy you books, but maybe you need to set some ground rules with him :lol: Although that sounds really boring and no-fun... I wish one could save the cake and eat it at the same time :giggle2:

 

 

And well done on your challenge too thats a great ammont read already!

 

 

Thanks! I've been at it for years (first unintentionally and then semi-intentionally) so I would be kinda annoyed if I didn't see the progress every now and then :)

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Oh boy... :D You have a great boyfriend for being so nice as to buy you books, but maybe you need to set some ground rules with him :lol: Although that sounds really boring and no-fun... I wish one could save the cake and eat it at the same time :giggle2:

 

 

 

 

Thanks! I've been at it for years (first unintentionally and then semi-intentionally) so I would be kinda annoyed if I didn't see the progress every now and then :)

 

Hehe i dont mind too much but i have told him no more books til my birthday! Maybe we should all give everything up apart from reading then we might be able to have much more reading time!

 

100 books from that list is great and its a huge ammount of books too :D

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Congrats Frankie!! : D

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Then I'll send you more books! :P

 

OK, seriously...

 

Congratulations, hun! I'm hella proud of you! :D

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When I think of you I picture you as a little monster (like Cookie Monster) devouring books (like Cookie Monster did cookies!) :D

 

Have you thought about another trip to Australia to...*cough* get more books? 

 

And visit Kylie, of course... :D

 

And pet a wallaby... 

 

((How did you get all your books back home last time?))

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Crippen is, in my opinion, brilliant! It was my second favorite book of 2011, topped only by the magnificient Room by Emma Donoghue :)  But I should not go on and on about it, you've already tempted to buy the book so my work was done, now if I keep talking it up you'll get really excited about it and then what if you shan't like it? :o:blush:

 

Okay now it's definitely going to have to go on the wishlist  :D

 

It wouldn't matter if i didn't like it as i know my hubby would  :readingtwo:

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Then I'll send you more books! :P

 

Don't nobody go and send me no books, please :D

 

OK, seriously...

 

Congratulations, hun! I'm hella proud of you! :D

 

Thank you darling, it's much appreciated! :friends3:  Hehe, you said 'hella' :D

 

 

When I think of you I picture you as a little monster (like Cookie Monster) devouring books (like Cookie Monster did cookies!) :D

 

Well, they call me a Crazy Finn so I guess anything goes... :D

 

Have you thought about another trip to Australia to...*cough* get more books? 

 

And visit Kylie, of course... :D

 

And pet a wallaby... 

 

((How did you get all your books back home last time?))

 

I'm certainly not thinking about any trips that would involve acquiring more books! Even if Kylie found out about another book fair that lasts for 10 days and deals with a whole lot more books than the one we went to in Canberra... I still owe money from the last trip so I'm thinking Kylie could come over here first :giggle2:

 

Okay now it's definitely going to have to go on the wishlist  :D

 

It wouldn't matter if i didn't like it as i know my hubby would  :readingtwo:

 

Yay! :D And I'm happy you can trust your hubby to like the book, so there's no harm in getting a copy in case you wouldn't enjoy it. I can't wait to hear what you think of it! :smile2:

 

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When I think of you I picture you as a little monster (like Cookie Monster) devouring books (like Cookie Monster did cookies!) :D

A 'Bookie Monster' as opposed to a Cookie Monster!  :D

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A 'Bookie Monster' as opposed to a Cookie Monster!  :D

 

 

:D Although that makes me think of gambling. Hm.

 

'Wanna bet 50 bucks that when she goes into that bookshop, she ain't coming out empty handed?'

:giggle2:

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