Tag: Nineties

Peter James – Sweet Heart | Review

Title: Sweet Heart

Author: Peter James

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 340

Rating: 3.5/5

This book was a bit of a strange experience, because James has definitely evolved as a writer since he came up with this one. At the same time, it wasn’t bad, although a few of the references dated it back to the early nineties when it was released. But that doesn’t really matter because the story itself is what makes it worth reading.

Sure, it has its fair share of clichés, but it’s also a haunted house story. In fact, it basically read like an early draft of The House on Cold Hill, and I enjoyed that one and so I enjoyed this one too. The writing was never clunky, but there were a few points at which it was perhaps overly simple. That said, it did exactly what it needed to do to tell the story, and I can’t really complain about it.

I’m not sure if I’d say this is a particularly good place to start with Peter James, but if you’ve read a few of his other books and perhaps you feel like a break from Roy Grace, this could well be the book for you. That’s especially true if you’re more of a fan of horror and the supernatural than police procedural novels, although I’m a fan of both and personally think that he’s better at the latter.

I also liked the way that everything all came together here, although it was perhaps a little predictable. But that made it a lot easier for me to keep track of what was going on and who was who, and so I never once felt lost. The result was just a pretty easy read that did still leave me feeling a little bit unsettled, to the point at which I was checking over my shoulder in my house to make sure that I was still alone. If that doesn’t sell this book, I don’t know what will.

Click here to buy Sweet Heart.

 


Bill Bryson – Neither Here Nor There | Review

Title: Neither Here Nor There
Author: Bill Bryson

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 304

Rating: 3/5

 

 

I’d been looking forward to reading this one because I picked up Notes from a Small Island a few years back and enjoyed it so much that it made me want to read everything else that Bryson has ever written. Somehow, I’ve ended up picking up nearly a dozen of his books without reading any of them and this is what I picked up when I finally got back to him.

Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it anywhere near as much as I was hoping to, and I think that was mostly because of how negative Bryson was about everywhere he visited. It just felt as though he was complaining his way across Europe, and rather than giving me the travel buzz as I was expecting, it made me feel pretty glad that I was at home.

Still, it’s not all bad, and there are little jokes here and there that made me chuckle. I also liked seeing what Europe was like in the late eighties and early nineties, and there were a few places he went to that I’ve been to as well, including Amsterdam and Milan. It’s kind of funny because Amsterdam is probably my favourite of the places that I’ve visited and Milan is probably my least favourite.

All in all, then, this was kind of a disappointment for me, but perhaps that’s just because I had such high hopes after my last brush with Bryson. It was fine though, and I’m glad that I finished reading it. I guess I’m just a little worried about the rest of Bryson’s oeuvre seeing as this sounded like one of his best. Oh well, it is what it is.

 

Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson

 

Click here to buy Neither Here Nor There.

 


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