Tag: Secrets

Peter James – Not Dead Enough | Review

Title: Not Dead Enough

Author: Peter James

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 626

Rating 3.75/5

 

 

This is another of Peter James’ Roy Grace novels and so as such, it follows Detective Superintendent Grace as he investigates a crime in his native Brighton. James is a Brighton native himself and he also spends a lot of time carrying out research so his books are as accurate as possible.

In this one, Grace has to investigate the murder of a socialite called Katie Bishop. The problem is that the main suspect, her husband Brian, seems to be innocent. Then things start to get a little bit weird, and I can’t really talk about it without sharing spoilers. Suffice to say, though, that the storyline touches on identity theft and family secrets. I’d also say that it’s one of those rare books where the investigation of the crime is more interesting than the crime itself.

In fact, I think that the most interesting part about this particular book is the side story. Each of the Roy Grace books can be read as a standalone, but you’ll get a little more out of it if you read them all in order. That’s because each of the books also covers what’s going on in the personal lives of many of Grace’s fellow coppers, but we also get a lot of Grace’s own back story including an update on his missing wife Sandy and a little bit of development when it comes to his current squeeze, Cleo.

 

 

Now like I say, I’ve read these out of order and so I kind of knew what to expect and what was coming, at least with the cops’ personal lives. Still, I’ve read enough of these books by now that I’m pretty attached to most of the characters and so it was a lot of fun to revisit them and to just hang out with them.

This is one of the longer Roy Grace books, and that poses a little bit of a problem because each of my reviews has the same number of words as the book has pages, and yet I don’t have much more to say about it because there wasn’t a whole load of stuff going on. I enjoyed reading it, but it didn’t seem to have as much substance as some of the others, so it was kind of like snacking on a big bag of crisps instead of eating a proper meal.

Because of that, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this one if you’re new to Peter James’ stuff, but if you’re working your way through the series then you also shouldn’t skip it either. It’s one of those weird books where there’s nothing necessarily wrong with it but where it feels as though it’s just business as usual. The good news is that I know from experience that the series continues to get better and to evolve and so you’ve got that to look forward to, too.

 

 

Click here to buy Not Dead Enough.

 


Laszlo Bock – Work Rules! | Review

Title: Work Rules!

Author: Laszlo Bock

Type: Non-Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 406

Rating: 3.5/5

 

Laszlo Bock - Work Rules

Laszlo Bock – Work Rules

 

This book was interesting, but it also dragged a bit and got a little tedious towards the end. In fact, the only reason that I picked it up is because I had to write a review of it for a client, although with that considered it was actually pretty good. Bock used to work for Google and spearheaded many of their innovative HR campaigns, and in this book he shares his secrets on how they approached people management.

It’s interesting because they ran all sorts of different tests to see what worked and what didn’t. Many of their findings were counterintuitive, which Bock explains by comparing it to aircraft design during the war. The designers noticed that certain parts of the plane such as the wings and the tail were more likely to be damaged on the aircraft that were returning from combat, and so they focussed their attention on reinforcing the cockpit. Why? Because the planes that were damaged in the cockpit weren’t returning at all.

Because of all of this, it’s a pretty interesting read. It’s a masterclass in thinking outside the box and has a bunch of great ideas on how to keep people happy and engaged in the workplace. I just think it would have been more enjoyable if it had been 100 pages shorter, and I don’t think that Bock’s writing style did it any favours. It’s not that he’s a bad writer, it’s just that writing isn’t his main thing. He does a good job of conveying information here, but I’m not necessarily convinced that it flowed well or that it built up and conveyed a sense of emotion.

Still, if you want to learn how Google does things then there aren’t any better books than this one to help you to understand the way their minds work. Bock also sources pretty much everything he says and so there’s also a comprehensive appendix at the end if you want to read any further on any of the topics that are covered. I just wouldn’t recommend picking this up as your main read because it might put you in a bit of a slump. I read it a chapter at a time in bed and it worked out just perfectly.You can make of this review what you will. Read it or don’t bother!

 

Laszlo Bock

Laszlo Bock

 

Click here to buy Work Rules!.