Category Book Reviews

Review: Mouthful of Birds, Samanta Schweblin

It’s been a while since I’ve read anything as creepy, compelling and utterly bizarre as Samanta Schweblin’s collection of short stories, Mouthful of Birds. From the titular story about a father who discovers his daughter’s compulsion to eat live birds, to stories about fanatical hair-plucking women and the lengths a couple will go to get […]

What I read in 2019

This year I challenged myself to read 30 books which I was very proud to have achieved until my friend told me she was on her 80th in November! I wanted to make more time for reading, for reflecting on what I read, and to record every book that I read. So here’s my list […]

Review: Once Upon a River, Diane Setterfield

I’ve been reading a lot of clever and ‘concentrate-y’ books (read: lit fic?) recently and was really missing the power of a novel of good length and brilliant story. In came Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield at just the right time. Set in a rural village community upon the banks of the river […]

Review: Autumn, Ali Smith

Have I mentioned that Autumn is my favourite time of year? Seven years of writing about Autumn on this blog later, I think it’s fair to say I’ve made my feelings about this season pretty clear. So it seems apt that the most recent book I read was the beautiful Autumn by Ali Smith which […]

Review: Under the Greenwood Tree, Thomas Hardy

Sometimes it’s nice to go back to an author where you know exactly what you’re going to get. As I make my way through Hardy’s rural back catalogue, I am conscious of the fact that I am knowingly avoiding the most depressing and shocking of his titles, Jude the Obscure. And, of course, it’s often […]

Review: Faces on the Tip of My Tongue, Emmanuelle Pagano

Reading books in translation is something I don’t do often enough, so a huge thank you to Peirene Press who kindly me sent a copy of this book and encouraged me to try something new. Faces on the Tip of My Tongue is a collection of stories set mostly in rural France, with a range […]

Review: An American Marriage, Tayari Jones

I’m not often so organised in my reading and rarely have I read a prize winner so quickly after it received a prize. But a short trip to Prague/Dresden this month meant that I plenty of opportunity to get stuck into something new, and Tayari Jones’ An American Marriage was my first pick. The way […]