Saturday, December 31, 2016

Romance is My day Job - Patience Bloom

This little memoir looks like it is my final read for 2016, and it left me with a smile on my face which was nice.  It is the story of Patience, who spends a lot of her life dreaming about the one, the one dream man who will love her forever.   Instead she gets a bunch of mostly useless boyfriends.

As well as loving romance novels with Fabio on the cover, she ends up working at Harlequin yet she struggles with her own relationships.   However things change when in her forties she reconnects with an old friend.

Enjoyable and light hearted I felt like I was talking to a good friend reading this book, always the best kind of read.  4/5

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

The Radium Girls - Kate Moore

This was one of the stories I knew a little about.  How in the early 20th century, young women working at watch factories were trained to lick the end of their brushes leading to many of them getting Radium poisoning.

I was unaware of how many of this young female workforce died, how quickly it happened and how horribly these poor girls suffered.  The doctors at the time I guess knew  no better, but the women had a tough time getting appropriate medical help or any support from the management or owners of the company's they worked for.

It would be unbelievable if it was a fictional plot, yet it still felt in parts like I was reading a horror novel.  I was dumbfounded at the end to discover that the sites where the factories were are still toxic, but the public still seems vulnerable.  5/5

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Living Death - Graham Masterton

This is number 7 in the DS Katie Maquire series, that combines crime and verges a bit into horror in some parts.  The torture of both humans and animals in this one was almost enough to make me stop reading. I also was a bit disappointed by Katie's treatment of her boyfriend John, I found that all a bit out of character.

So although the story seemed to be based on real life criminal behavior it grossed me out a bit too much this time. 3/5

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Truly, Madly, Guilty - Liane Moriarty

Hmm mm, I percivered with this one but came away a bit annoyed that I invested so much time.  It is the story of two friends and their husbands who attend a barbecue at a neighbors house.  The story then shifts from before, to the day off and afterwards which although a useful vehicle for moving the story, became a bit annoying by the end.

The main disappointment for me was that I didn't like any of the characters, which seems to happen a lot lately.  Maybe it's just me!!  3/5

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Rogue One

Family, kiss, run, shoot,shoot,run,fly,shoot,run,fly,run,shoot,fly,run,shoot,shoot,fly,Lego,shoot,shoot,fly,climb,shoot,fly,shoot,shoot,the end.  4/5

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Alanatomy - Alan Carr

After reading a few too many books about death and dying lately, I chose something a bit lighter .  Alan Carr is the host of the UK talk show Chatty Man.  I like him, he is pretty entertaining but I felt a bit flat after reading this one.

I guess there were a few chapters devoted to shows I have never seen and celebrities that mean nothing to me.  I also felt that he kept trying to write everything as a bit of a joke and a lot of it just felt a bit annoying and unnecessary, yet when he was writing honestly I enjoyed his tales.  3/5

Friday, December 16, 2016

Things That Matter - David Galler

This is a non fiction book written by a New Zealand ICU doctor.  Combining information about how the body works, stories about patients and personal tales I found it a quick and easy read.

Like many books by doctors there is a wealth of wisdom and information, and also the  element of luck determine what our health future holds.  Our bodies are delicate beings and it doesn't take much to tip the balance.  4/5

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

I'm Supposed to Protect You From All This - Nadja Spiegelman

I have to say I didn'the really enjoy this book and kept waiting for it to improve and reveal some magic.  Nadja tells the stories around her mother said growing up and the relationships between mothers, daughters and grandmothers.   There are some interesting stories told and the span of the stories from the early 1900s to the current day show the rapid cultural and social changes that have occurred.   I think the main issue was that I didn'the like any of the women written about.  They all seemed a bit mean and selfish.  2/5

Monday, December 12, 2016

Wild and Precious Life - Deborah Ziegler

This is one of those memoirs that fills in a few gaps in a story that I was aware of, but only knew bits and pieces of.   The author is the mother of Brittany Maynard the 29 year old American woman who was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor, and used her time to advocate for patients to be able to choose to die with dignity.

It is an interesting read as mother and daughter have a bit of a fractious relationship, not always getting on.  Her mother tells us about their lives before diagnosis and the limited time they had together once everything changed.  There is a lot of palpable grief that understandably taunts the telling of the story, it is still very powerful.  4/5

Thursday, December 08, 2016

The Girl Before - Rena Olsen

Clara cannot understand how her and her loving husband have been taken from their home and what has happened to the girls in her care.  So as the story unfolds we find out the reason they have been taken.

I was intrigued by the story all the way through not sure in what direction it would go.  Parts of it left me unsettled, I don'the want to give the plot away there are plenty of reviews that will tell you more about the underlying story.  4/5

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Dying - Cory Taylor

I read a review of this books on goodreads where it was described as coming under q genre of books called illness narrative.  Cory Taylor is an Australian author who has stage four Metastatic Melanoma.   Facing her impending death she writes about her family, her experience with her own parents and winds it altogether in this small memoir.

I don'the know why I enjoy these books so much, there is seldom any big aha moments in the books.  I think though that I enjoy a good read about families and maybe there is a sense of clarity that comes from that moment when you know that death approaches, although in reality it is coming for us all.  4/5

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

A Life in Parts - Bryan Cranston

I must admit to be a Bryan Cranston fan.  I only watched the first season of Breaking Bad, but loved him as the lovable dad Hal in Malcolm in the Middle.   Lately I have seen him being interviewed on a myriad of chat shows as he promotes this new memoir.

Written in mostly chronological order it is a series of stories about his life.  With mainly dysfunctional parents I enjoyed his stories and he came across as an interesting likable guy who learned some pretty good life lessons from the people he met.  4/5

Monday, December 05, 2016

Holding - Graham Norton

Forgive me for not posting for a while.  Somehow my laptop has stopped working and I am left typing out posts on my phone like the middle aged lady that I am.

I had read Graham Norton autobiography and enjoyed his writing so took a chance on his novel.  Holding is a novel about a quiet Irish village, the local sole policeman who finally gets some excitement when bones are found at a local farm.  Two of the local women are considered suspects and as the investigation progresses we learn about their history.   I did enjoy the story, a slow and steady slice of rural life.  3/5