Tag: Scared

Blake Crouch – Dark Matter | Review

Title: Dark Matter

Author: Blake Crouch

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 406

Rating: 4/5



This is one of those books where I’ve heard loads of good things about it and so where I therefore worried that it might not live up to the hype. There was no need to be scared with this one though, because Crouch is a more than competent writer and the story line and the concept is great here, too.

The problem is that I don’t really want to go too much into that because I don’t want to share any spoilers. Suffice to say that you’re in for a fun little science fiction thriller novel that covers parallel universes and the butterfly effect, the idea that a seemingly insignificant event can have profound repercussions. It’s a concept that’s been done before and I wasn’t sure how well Crouch was going to handle it, but he left me pretty satisfied and so I can’t complain too much.

I was particularly impressed with the way in which it managed to handle being both science fiction and a thriller, because I can see how it would appeal to readers of both genres. I wouldn’t say that I’m a particularly big fan of either genre, and in fact I’m generally disappointed by thrillers,  but this one kept me reading and also had an open ending, which is usually an easy way to get me to like something. I just like that feeling of being able to decide what happened for myself, although I appreciate that not everyone is the same.



All in all, I thought this was well-written and well-executed with a great concept that allowed for plenty of surprises along the way. It’s one of those rare books where it feels as though there’s not much point trying to guess what’s going to happen because literally anything could happen. When you find a story like that, you don’t really have any choice – you just have to keep on reading because you want to find out what’s going to happen.

So if you’ve heard about Dark Matter and have thought about it but haven’t been ready to jump on in, I’m here to tell you that it’s all good stuff and you’ll probably enjoy it. Better still, it only took me a couple of days to read it, which meant that it didn’t drag. Go and read it.



Click here to buy Dark Matter.


Carlos Ruiz Zafon – The Shadow of the Wind | Review

Title: The Shadow of the Wind

Author: Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 522

Rating: 2*/5


Carlos Ruiz Zafon - The Shadow of the Wind

Carlos Ruiz Zafon – The Shadow of the Wind


Well I guess the short and simple version here is that I was disappointed by this. You ready for the long version?

This book had its pros and cons, and I can totally see why a lot of people like it. At the same time, though, I’m also surprised I haven’t heard more people giving it negative reviews. For me, it was pretty dull and I found myself repeatedly zoning out and losing interest.

Part of the problem is from the main character, Daniel, who made a lot of decisions that I didn’t agree with. He developed an unhealthy obsession for someone, let himself into their house and walked in on them having sex, and then later he started sleeping with someone who was engaged to a dude in the army. He just acted like a bit of a douche throughout and I found it hard to really care about him. He was spoiled, entitled and the kind of protagonist where I just want to see them fail.

In fact, the main problem that I had with this book was the fact that it was like watching a bad magician. I could tell when I was supposed to feel excited or scared or to laugh at the book, but the fact that I could tell I was supposed to do it made me less inclined to actually do so. It was like being in the studio audience for an unfunny comedy and feeling awkward when they flashed up big “laughtersigns.


Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Carlos Ruiz Zafon


Sure, there were bits here and there where it was beautifully written, and it’s a very “quotablebook. But that’s not what I look for when I read something, and there’s no point being able to write decent sentences if the book as a whole just bores someone to tears. I wouldn’t have bothered to even finish reading it if I’d been reading it by myself, but because it was a buddy read and I’d organised it, I felt as though I had to. But it didn’t get any better.

And we’re now getting to the point at which my review is resembling the book, because I don’t have anything else to add here but I have another 150 words to write to meet my word count. For those of you who didn’t know this, my word count for my reviews matches the page count of the book, and so I write longer reviews for longer books.

You could condense this review to 300 words and it would be better. Which is kind of funny because you could condense the book to 300 pages and it would be better for it, too. Instead, it just felt bloated and a chore to read, and I can’t imagine ever wanting to read another Zafon book in the future. I don’t really have “reading slumps”, but if I did then this book would have given me one. I had to switch to an Agatha Christie book afterwards to enjoy reading again.


Carlos Ruiz Zafon

Carlos Ruiz Zafon


Click here to buy The Shadow of the Wind.