Tag: Approachable

Robert Louis Stevenson – Kidnapped | Review

Title: Kidnapped

Author: Robert Louis Stevenson

Type: Fiction

Page Count: 232

Rating: 3.25/5

I’ve had this for a while but had been putting it off because I didn’t much like Treasure Island. My issue there was that I thought the story line was good but that the writing let it down, which is why I tend to enjoy adaptations of it more than the source material.

Here, I quite liked the character of David Balfour and I found the story a little more balanced with better pacing, and I also thought that Stevenson’s writing was a little more approachable. The downside is that there aren’t any pirates, but I can live with that.

True, I still don’t think that Stevenson is the writer for me, but I did think that was perhaps more accessible. I’m sure there are some pretty cool adaptations of it too, although I can’t say I’ve ever seen any. Now that I know the story, though, I can go ahead and check some of them out, I guess.

So would I recommend it? Well that kind of depends as it’s a complicated question with no easy answer. It’s not a bad shout if you’re into classics and you’re looking for something that’s a little more of an adventure. If you’re more of a general reader then perhaps you’re better off just skipping it. Huh.

Learn more about Kidnapped.

 


B. A. Paris – The Break Down | Review

Title: The Break Down

Author: B. A. Paris

Type: Fiction

Page Count: 432

Rating: 4/5

I normally find thriller novels pretty hit and miss, but I’ve quite enjoyed what I’ve read of B. A. Paris so far. I might even be slightly more kindly disposed towards her because I was sent a copy of Behind Closed Doors, her first novel, ahead of its publication.

I think part of it is the fact that her writing just feels a little more polished to me. There’s a sort of style of writing that’s pretty common amongst thriller writers that just grates on me somehow, a way with words that just feels clunky and which pulls me out of the story. That doesn’t seem to happen with B. A. Paris.

Still, it wasn’t flawless. One of my biggest problems with it was a scene in which a group of French students steal a phone and then give it to the main character. I don’t want to say too much because I don’t want to spoil things for you, but it was kind of a Deus Ex Machina kind of thing where it all just felt too coincidental. And if it hadn’t happened, the whole story couldn’t have taken place.

Overall though, I did enjoy reading this, and I was particularly impressed by how gripping it was. I found it difficult to put down, and there wasn’t a slowdown in the story towards the middle, which I find is pretty typical in thriller novels. I think it probably also helped that it did some fun stuff with layout towards the end as we start to see a series of text messages, and this meant that the page was broken up and you could whizz through a dozen pages in just a couple of minutes. I think that layout might annoy some people, but not me.

So would I recommend The Break Down? Absolutely. It’s a refreshing little read in a genre that’s been done to death. In fact, I think that most people would probably enjoy it even if they don’t consider themselves to be thriller readers, and that’s saying something. It’s just pretty approachable, and it does a great job of the whole “twist” thing, to the point at which you could probably re-read it and still enjoy it because you’d start to look for the clues.

Now that I’ve enjoyed both this book and Behind Closed Doors, I think we can safely say that I’m a fan of B. A. Paris, and I’ll definitely check out more stuff.

Learn more about The Break Down.