Tag: Tough

Sue Reid – Mill Girl | Review

Title: Mill Girl

Author: Sue Reid

Type: Fiction

Page Count: 224

Rating: 3.5/5

I read this book because it came with a whole bunch of others that I bought as a job lot on eBay. It stood out because it’s part of a Scholastic line that focusses on historical fiction, and it’s also pretty cool because it takes the form of a diary.

We’ve got a young female protagonist living in Victorian Manchester and who works in a Mill, and so you know going in that she’s going to have a pretty tough life. At the same time, the book’s clearly aimed at younger readers and so there’s nothing here that’s so intense that it would stop a parent from reading it to their kids.

But to be honest, the point here is more to educate kids about what it was like back in the day, and I think it does a pretty good job of that. Even though it’s written the way it is, in an episodic format based on diary entries, the author actually manages to do an impressive job of worldbuilding, and so it’s easy to feel as though you can smell the city.

Plus I’m originally from the Midlands, which makes me an honourary northerner. I was always going to like it. A nice find!

Learn more about Mill Girl.

Jaroslavas Melnikas – The Last Day | Review

Title: The Last Day

Author: Jaroslavas Melnikas

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 186

Rating 4/5



I don’t really know how to explain this one. I guess if I had to pigeonhole it, I’d call it literary fiction, but it’s also kind of like a set of short stories mixed together into one psychedelic whole. We start with a book that accurately predicts the day of people’s deaths, move on to disappearing rooms inside a family house and then eventually end up at a strange cinema that seems to have no staff.

It’s tough going and definitely not an easy read, but it’s also one of those books that compels you to keep on reading because you can’t wait to find out what happens next. And yet despite that, it’s not a plot heavy book. I don’t normally like this kind of stuff, but Melnikas nailed it. And of course, by reading this book, you’re also supporting Lithuanian literature and picking up a BBC Book of the Year award-winner, if you care about such things. Go and read it.



Click here to buy The Last Day.