Fragment by Warren Fahy

fragmentWelcome to Henders Island where many weird and wonderful new creatures run amoc. An island separate from the rest of humanity where life has evolved in a different form.

It’s not a place I would wish to visit for my holidays, although the novel certainly makes for entertaining reading. It’s action packed drama all the way. It’s not a novel with deep characterisation, but it’s exceptionally gripping and a complete page turner. I really can see this transferring to the big screen very well as it very much puts me in the mind of Jurassic Park. It’s really thrilling and keeps you on your toes. I found it well written and easy to follow although it did require some imagination to conjure up the animals in my mind, but actually that was quite fun.

The last 100 or so pages of the book took me a little by surprise as I was not expecting the course that the book took. It was all good though!

If you want all out action and you can appreciate a deviation from reality I suggest you read this. It’s a great entertaining read.

Find out more HERE


Kicked Out by Richard W Hardwick

kicked outThis is the tale of sixteen year old Danny who is made homeless when kicked out of home by his parents after disappearing for two days after his sixteenth birthday.

I started this and really wasn’t sure it was going to be to my taste, but I was glad to be proved wrong. I found the writing style easy to read, but initially it was interspersed with other bits of writing that made the story a little difficult to follow, but this became less over the course of the book. I found that initially Danny came across as a very shallow young lad, but after being made homeless and then finding himself a place in a young people’s hostel I started to see another side to Danny appear. He makes a pal there called Goocher, although finds himself sharing a room with a ’smackhead’ Paul. Lots of fighting happens at the hostel along with drugs, sex and drink, but we also see the camaraderie of the young people and how they will look out for their pals.

When Lucy comes into the picture we can really start to see the softer side to Danny and it makes you feel so sad that his own family have become dysfunctional.

I found that through the story I really started to root for Danny and really hope that he could pull his life around and make something of himself. I then start thinking about life on the streets and those that are homeless. Many probably have much they could give to society, but with their upbringings and hardships that they have had to face make this an almost impossible task for them.

Overall I would say this is a novel that really draws you in and can help you understand the lives of those less fortunate than yourself and I felt could make you think under different circumstances “that could be me!” I have certainly been surprised by other’s behaviour (people that I think I know well) when they have been put under a certain set of circumstances and so I know that people can be a mix of many things depending on their situation. I think this is a book that will stick with me for sure and it’s certainly one that I would recommend.

Published by:  Burning House

RRP: £7.99

Once Upon a Time in England by Helen Walsh

once upon a time in englandThis novel is set in the 70’s and 80’s in the Northern town of Warrington and folllows the lives of a mixed race family: The Fitzgeralds.

My initial thoughts were what a beautiful writing style and straight away I wondered where this story would lead for Robbie and Susheela. Reading further on I was surprised the direction the book took and about 100 pages in I wasn’t sure where the story was heading at all, but oh my goodness 200 pages in and I was totally hooked – I began to feel it was like car crash reading though. It feels like one of the most miserable but enchanting tales I’ve ever read.

Half way in I was finding this quite a depressing read and I was waiting for something positive to happen to lighten it up. I didn’t really like She or Robbie as characters and most stories that I really enjoy I find I connect with the characters and so I feel this book is unusual for me.

Moving, harrowing, disturbing, depressing and thrilling are the words I would use to describe this book. Utterly compelling reading through each time period. Well worth reading. Also the ending was not completely a negative experience. I would definitely read more by this author.


find me at Librarything

Living Like You Mean It: Use the Wisdom and Power of Your Emotions to Get the Life You Really Want by Ronald J. Frederick

feelingThis is a book aimed at those people who are out of touch with their feelings and emotions, although anyone may gain from reading it. The book explains that many people are afraid of their emotions (feeling phobia) and truly do not accept them and will rationalise in their head, with their thoughts, as the emotions can be too strong for them to deal with. The book advises really feeling those feelings and emotions through the body and to leave the thinking for later. It gives examples of people and their lives and looks at the influence of their upbringing with regards to how they deal with emotions.It then gives advice how to deal with the fear and accept your own emotions in full.

I found this an interesting book, well written and easy to follow and understand. I have read some similar books before and I wasn’t sure that this one added too much to what I’d already read – however it did make me realise that, at times, I am too quick to rationalise things other people do before feeling fully the emotion I have felt because of what they have done, and so it’s definitely given me food for thought and next time I have a roaring emotion, caused by someone else’s action, I’ll try to bear with it and let the thoughts happen later and see how it feels. I would certainly recommend it to anyone that has difficulties with their emotions and connections to other people, especially if they’ve not read anything in this area before. I can certainly imagine it could be of great use to people who had a very cold upbringing and really have never ever gotten to grips with their feelings as from childhood their emotions have been pushed away. If everyone could learn to connect with others as this book suggests the world would be a better one.

Publisher: Jossey-Bass (March 3, 2009)

Tomato Girl by Jayne Pupek


A strange, sad and disturbing tale set in the American South in the late 60’s. Ellie lives with her father and mother, but her mother is mentally unstable and after a fall and Tess the ‘Tomato Girl’ comes to stay things steadily deteriorate for her mother and all involved.

Highly addicting reading, however, awful things happen to eleven year old Ellie, one after the other, and it sometimes appears a little difficult to believe, but it certainly makes for page turning stuff.

Ellie has an awful lot to contend with dealing with her mother , father and Tess and one wonders how such a young girl can cope with all that is laid on her shoulders. One minute she seems very young for her years but the next very old. It’s certainly a world that wouldn’t be wished upon such young shoulders and it can be very strange too; the tale of her brother is most definitely disturbing. Ellie definitely had much too much responsibilty for one so young. It shows the strength of her character, but then if one has to deal with an awful situation there sometimes are not many options. It certainly scars her although which is to be expected. Ellie has a good friend who tries to help along the way and also finds there are others out there who will try to help in anyway they can, even if this involves a little bit of magic. It was by no means a cheerful tale,but the ending was certainly fitting and I felt helped lift the story from some of the sadness involved.


The Sunday Salon / Currently reading: Tomato Girl by Jayne Pupek

I’m currently reading this and thoroughly enjoying it. I’ve been a bit slack in updating the blog lately, but hopefully I will have more time to give to it soon.

Random stuff:

I want to get a decent copy of IT by Stephen King. It’s got to be in really good condition as I don’t like to read scruffy books. Why does that take away from my reading experience? Also why do I often forget to use a question mark at the end of a question and it’s only when I reread the sentence that I notice?!?!?!

Phil Rickman

I really like his books and I’ve recently read:  A Crown of Lights and thought it was superb – it’s the third book in the Merrily Watkins series, and I’ve also recently read another of his books written as Will Kingdom: The Cold Calling, yet again I loved this too! Can’t wait to get stuck into more of his books.

Other stuff:

I’m also currently reading The Broken Window by Jefferry Deaver – it’s great to get back into the Lincoln Rhyme series as I haven’t read any of these for a while and he definitely has been one of my favorite authors.

I will also soon have my review up for Gutted by Tony Black – the new Gus Dury novel that’s out in May/June. Will I love it or hate it?

Find out here soon!

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Unspoken by Sam Hayes

unspokenMeet Julie, her alcoholic husband Murray and her silent mother Mary. This thriller revolves around the search for the attacker of a local schoolgirl and was certainly one of those books that I wanted to keep reading. It was a joy to read as each chapter was told by the perspective of these three people and brought them and their story to life. I really enjoyed getting to the know the characters and really warmed to them all. It was good to see the black, the white and all the greys in between with the characterisation. I really enjoyed the  emotion of the thriller as well as the story as I find many thrillers lacking in this area and to bring them together I find very satisfactory. I would definitely recommend this to those who enjoy a thriller, but enjoy the emotional side of life too!