5 books to talk about this month:
- Mark Billingham - The Bones Beneath
- Nicola May - The School Gates
- Jonny Wilkinson - My Autobiography
- Nicola May - The School Gates
- Harper Lee - To Kill A Mockingbird.
- Mark Billingham's The Bones Beneath is the 12th novel in the Tom Thorne series. Tom is a detective who heads up a murder team. Stuart Nicklin is serving multiple life sentences behind bars and is one of the most dangerous psycopaths that Thorne has ever put behind bars. Nicklin promises to reveal the whereabouts of a body he buried 25 yrs previously but only on his terms and if Thorne escorts him to the remote island off the Welsh coast. With multiple dangers and the body count growing, Thorne soon realises that Nicklins playing a game that he has planned for years and a race against time ensues. I'm a huge fan of the Tom Thorne series and once I got into this book I enjoyed it, however I didn't think it was as good as previous novels, I think it may have been that it was predominately set outside of London, which as much as a Thorne novel as is the character.
- Nicola May – The SchoolGates. As titled this book revolves around The School Gates of Featherstone Primary in the small town of Denbury and is a fun read perfect for "Back to School" month. With no central story, this book centres around a number of people who all meet daily at the school gates of the primary school and how their lives layer each other's and interlink. Gordy is a gay flight attendant, who is juggling parenthood that has been thrust upon him with twins of his much loved and departed sister. Joan is the earth mother who has a brood of children, and new born baby (who is transported around on a cat box strapped to the bicycle) juggling worries of health & her marriage. Alana is a very high powered career driven women who is hiding a very big secret from a work colleague. Dana is the ex-au pair, now 2nd wife to Mark, who is slowly realising that life as the wife isn't as exciting as the au pair mistress and desperate for a 2nd baby. Mo is the downtrodden mum who is abused by her alcoholic husband and Emily is the PTA bitch, who look's like she has it all, but crack soon appear in her perfect lifestyle. I loved these characters within this book and once I got used to how the books jumps between characters was soon deeply embroiled within the lives of the residents of Denbury. An easy fun filled read with realistic characters. Look forward to reading more from the author.
- Jonny Wilkinson – My Autobiography. Jonny Wilkinson's career has crossed three decades and four World Cups. He has accumulated phenomenal achievements, world points records, an impressive list of broken body parts, and a drop goal that will be remembered for ever. But the peculiar calmness with which he played the game masked a very different reality.
- Lynda La Plante – Backlash. From the author that bought us Prime Suspect, this is LLP's 8th book in the Above Suspicion (Anna Travis) series. The story centres around a man that is caught 'red handed' with a body in a van that has been sexually assaulted and murdered. Confessing to the killing and whilst under interview he also eludes to further killings, it is now up to the detective team to find the evidence and the bodies of previous killings. This re-opens a cold case of DCS Langton's featuring a missing 13year old girl. As the team become embroiled within the investigation the killer continues to play games with the team, believing that he has committed the perfect murders. This book grabs you from the beginning and it was nice reacquainting myself with the charters of previous books. The writing is gritty, graphic, and real which is the epitome of LLP's style. Loved it and can't wait to read book 9.
- Harper Lee – To Kill a Mockingbird To Kill a Mockingbird is a coming-of-age story, an anti-racist novel, a historical drama of the Great Depression and a sublime example of the Southern writing tradition. Voted the most life changing book by a female author and this year celebrates its 50th birthday. This year I received the 50th birthday hardback as a birthday gift and have loved revisiting this story. It is one of my favourite books and I have read it numerous times, along with seeing it at the theatre and on screen. Studying it for my o'level many years ago, it is a book that has stayed with me over the years, I have many versions along with a much thumbed and loved copy from my teens (complete with notes in the margins) and I read it frequently. I loved the character of Atticus Finch who reminds me so much of my gramps. " Shoot all the blue jays in the world, but if you hit them, remember it’s a sin to Kill a Mockingbird" A lawyer's advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel - a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the thirties. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina of one man's struggle for justice. But the weight of history will only tolerate so much.
As you can see a very varied book pile this month and a lovely re-visit to a couple of favourites along with catching up with old friends in new adventures from 2 admired crime writers. A mixed book bag this month to reflect the new school year and even Taylor got in on the act of the back to school vibe!
Here are some book posts from previous months, would love to hear what you have been reading or recommendations……