Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT STAR OF THE SEA by Joseph O’Connor #SundayBlogShare

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid reader’s thoughts

This is about life on board an immigrant sailing vessel carrying Irish Potato Famine sufferers to America. We learn of the conditions and the backgrounds that brought these unfortunate people together on this journey. One made more horrific by a killer on board. Man’s inhumanity to his fellows rears its ugly head once more.

Book Description

In the bitter winter of 1847, from an Ireland torn by famine and injustice, the Star of the Sea sets sail for NewYork. On board are hundreds of refugees, some optimistic, many more desperate. Among them are a maid with a devastating secret, the bankrupt Lord Merridith, his wife and children, and a killer stalking the decks, hungry for the vengeance that will bring absolution.

This journey will see many lives end, others begin anew. Passionate loves are tenderly recalled, shirked responsibilities regretted too late, and profound relationships shockingly revealed. In this spellbinding tale of tragedy and mercy, love and healing, the farther the ship sails toward the Promised Land, the more her passengers seem moored to a past that will never let them go.

As urgently contemporary as it is historical, this exciting and compassionate novel builds with the pace of a thriller to a stunning conclusion.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT CALEB’S CROSSING by Geraldine Brooks #HistFic

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s thoughts

A super read.  This book is about how the early settlers mixed with and tolerated, or not, with the native Indians. There was an amazing classical education for the favoured few and some special scholarships for the natives. The story tells of hardships, segregation, and tolerance seen through the eyes of Bethia a protestant Minister`s daughter.  Mainly set on the island now called Martha`s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Book description

Geraldine Brooks takes a remarkable shard of history and brings it to vivid life. In 1665, a young man from Martha’s Vineyard became the first Native American to graduate from Harvard College. Upon this slender factual scaffold, Brooks has created a luminous tale of love and faith, magic and adventure.

The narrator of Caleb’s Crossing is Bethia Mayfield, growing up in the tiny settlement of Great Harbor amid a small band of pioneers and Puritans. Restless and curious, she yearns after an education that is closed to her by her sex. As often as she can, she slips away to explore the island’s glistening beaches and observe its native Wampanoag inhabitants. At twelve, she encounters Caleb, the young son of a chieftain, and the two forge a tentative secret friendship that draws each into the alien world of the other. Bethia’s minister father tries to convert the Wampanoag, awakening the wrath of the tribe’s shaman, against whose magic he must test his own beliefs. One of his projects becomes the education of Caleb, and a year later, Caleb is in Cambridge, studying Latin and Greek among the colonial elite. There, Bethia finds herself reluctantly indentured as a housekeeper and can closely observe Caleb’s crossing of cultures.

Like Brooks’s beloved narrator Anna in Year of Wonders, Bethia proves an emotionally irresistible guide to the wilds of Martha’s Vineyard and the intimate spaces of the human heart. Evocative and utterly absorbing, Caleb’s Crossing further establishes Brooks’s place as one of our most acclaimed novelists.

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT FATHERLAND by Robert Harris #Thriller #TuesdayBookBlog

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

A very unusual background for this mystery novel.  I nearly gave up several times,  I kept going back to the beginning to check the dates of events it just did not make sense.  Then I twigged!!  It was set in the 1960`s but assuming that Germany had won WW2.  Life had not moved on, all the restrictions were as they were in the war, outside world influence was minimal.  Worth a read but understand what you are reading before you start.

Book Description

Fatherland is set in an alternative world where Hitler has won the Second World War. It is April 1964 and one week before Hitler’s 75th birthday. Xavier March, a detective of the Kriminalpolizei, is called out to investigate the discovery of a dead body in a lake near Berlin’s most prestigious suburb. As March discovers the identity of the body, he uncovers signs of a conspiracy that could go to the very top of the German Reich. And, with the Gestapo just one step behind, March, together with an American journalist, is caught up in a race to discover and reveal the truth – a truth that has already killed, a truth that could topple governments, a truth that will change history.

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Rosie’s Avid Readers The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson #Bookreview

Rosie's Avid ReadersRosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

What an extraordinary idea for a book!  Not only what happened on his hundredth birthday, but throughout his life the most crazy yet possible events involving worldwide celebrities. Can you put it down? No.  Are you laughing all the time? Yes

Book Description

It all starts on the one-hundredth birthday of Allan Karlsson. Sitting quietly in his room in an old people’s home, he is waiting for the party he-never-wanted-anyway to begin. The Mayor is going to be there. The press is going to be there. But, as it turns out, Allan is not… Slowly but surely Allan climbs out of his bedroom window, into the flowerbed (in his slippers) and makes his getaway. And so begins his picaresque and unlikely journey involving criminals, several murders, a suitcase full of cash, and incompetent police. As his escapades unfold, we learn something of Allan’s earlier life in which – remarkably – he helped to make the atom bomb, became friends with American presidents, Russian tyrants, and Chinese leaders, and was a participant behind the scenes in many key events of the twentieth century. Already a huge bestseller across Europe, The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared is a fun and feel-good book for all ages.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT A Plague On Both Your Houses by Susanna Gregory

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

An Excellent Tale of Murder Mystery & Intrigue set in 14th Centuary Cambridge during the plague.

Book Description

A Plague on Both Your Houses introduces physician Matthew Bartholomew, whose unorthodox but effective treatment of his patients frequently draws accusations of heresy from his more traditional colleagues. Besides his practice, Bartholomew teaches medicine at Michaelhouse, part of the fledgling University of Cambridge. In 1348, the inhabitants of Cambridge live under the shadow of a terrible pestilence that has ravaged Europe and is traveling relentlessly towards England. Bartholomew, however, is distracted by the sudden and inexplicable death of the Master of Michaelhouse, a death University authorities do not want investigated. His pursuit of the truth leads him into a complex tangle of lies and intrigue that forces him to question the innocence of his closest friends, even his family. And then the Black Death finally arrives.

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT The Book Thief by Markus Zusak #bookreview

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

The Book Thief   by  Markus  Zusak

What an interesting story!!  Narrated by Death,  it tells of life in a street in a small town near Munich during WW2. In no way is it political it is just about life.

Book Description

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT Saint Anything by @sarahdessen #YA #Bookreview

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

‘Throughout my childhood, I have always loved Sarah Dessen as a writer: she explores very relevant and sometimes very upsetting topics through the narrative of a loveable, intelligent protagonist, combining this exploration of complex issues with relatable events and emotions of every teenager ever (eh hem, first crush). So when I picked up ‘Saint Anything’, I was not disappointed…

This novel is narrated by a teenage girl called Sydney, whose older brother, Peyton, has always been the apple of their parents’ eyes, receiving all of the attention: even when he is sent to jail. Yet, overshadowed by her brother’s reckless behaviour, it seems to be Sydney who is left behind with all of the guilt and shame of his mistakes. Lost and confused, Sydney finds a comfort and acceptance within the welcoming but very chaotic Chatham family, where she meets Mac, gentle, warm and protective, and who makes Sydney feel like she finally belongs. Intertwined with this tale of one young girl finding her true self are issues such as parental relationships, alcohol abuse, sexual abuse, and illnesses, all very relevant and important topics in our teenage society today: it is the exploration of these controversial issues that makes the novel so powerful and moving. However, whilst these darker messages and morals are very emotional, they are explored in such a way that makes them seem more approachable and beatable, through the light-hearted and witty perspective of Sydney, the protagonist: she is rational and guarded, yet warm and loving, and there are many comments that she makes that earn her a lot of admiration and respect from me as a reader. What I also love about ‘Saint Anything’ is that there are a few very special moments throughout the novel, such as when Sydney and her new-found friends discover an old merry-go-round, an event which I feel symbolises the unexpected and magical moments that life can bring: there are lots of morals and symbols in Dessen’s writing, and you learn them without even realising, through her very clever and easy narrative style.

If I had to criticise the novel in any way (and I don’t want to), it would be that some of the events are very predictable: I won’t name them, but it comes to a point where you as the reader just know that some things are going to happen, which does take away some of the literary anticipation. However, equally there are events that do completely surprise you, so maybe Dessen has found a clever balance between the two elements?

In conclusion, there is very little about this novel that I can knock, and a lot that I can praise: the characters are developed deeply, and all are loveable in their own way; there is a plot thread of fast food, which is of course appreciated; and alongside things so light-hearted runs an exploration of some very sensitive and relevant problems with our society. So does Sydney eventually find her voice? – you’ll have to read to find out!’

Book description

Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?

Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

 

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT The Marks of Cain by Tom Knox #bookreview

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

Yet another story about the origins of the Catholic Church. Revealing & plausible, draw your own conclusions.

Book Description

A thrilling and startling novel from the author of the international bestseller The Genesis Secret

When David Martinez, a young lawyer, receives an ancient map from his dying grandfather, the mysteries of his past begin to open up before him. The map leads David into the heart of the dangerous Basque mountains, where a genetic curse lies buried and a frightening secret about the Western world’s past is hidden.

Meanwhile, London journalist Simon Quinn may have found his big break. A wealthy, elderly woman has been murdered in the most horrific fashion, and another homicide soon follows. Both victims came from villages in the Basque region, both were interred at a top-secret Nazi camp, both have been silenced for what they know about the experiments conducted on the Basques, the Jews, and a dwindling mystical tribe of pre-Caucasian locals called Cagots.

From the North Sea islands to the Arizona desert, from the graveyards of the Basque countryside to the heart of colonial Africa, Martinez’s and Quinn’s quests intersect to reveal the shocking roots of racial persecution, human violence, and war.

The Genesis Secret-already in its fourth hardcover printing and appearing on several bestseller lists-immediately established Tom Knox as a searing, brilliant new voice in commercial fiction. The Marks of Cain dares to raise the bar even higher and promises to be an even greater success.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT The Litigators by John Grisham #bookreview

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

Another look at the legal system in USA.  A good read, money talks, and shows that you can make a case out of anything.

Book Description

The partners at Finley & Figg—all two of them—often refer to themselves as “a boutique law firm.” Boutique, as in chic, selective, and prosperous. They are, of course, none of these things. What they are is a two-bit operation always in search of their big break, ambulance chasers who’ve been in the trenches much too long making way too little. Their specialties, so to speak, are quickie divorces and DUIs, with the occasional jackpot of an actual car wreck thrown in. After twenty plus years together, Oscar Finley and Wally Figg bicker like an old married couple but somehow continue to scratch out a half-decent living from their seedy bungalow offices in southwest Chicago.

And then change comes their way. More accurately, it stumbles in. David Zinc, a young but already burned-out attorney, walks away from his fast-track career at a fancy downtown firm, goes on a serious bender, and finds himself literally at the doorstep of our boutique firm. Once David sobers up and comes to grips with the fact that he’s suddenly unemployed, any job—even one with Finley & Figg—looks okay to him.

With their new associate on board, F&F is ready to tackle a really big case, a case that could make the partners rich without requiring them to actually practice much law. An extremely popular drug, Krayoxx, the number one cholesterol reducer for the dangerously overweight, produced by Varrick Labs, a giant pharmaceutical company with annual sales of $25 billion, has recently come under fire after several patients taking it have suffered heart attacks. Wally smells money.

A little online research confirms Wally’s suspicions—a huge plaintiffs’ firm in Florida is putting together a class action suit against Varrick. All Finley & Figg has to do is find a handful of people who have had heart attacks while taking Krayoxx, convince them to become clients, join the class action, and ride along to fame and fortune. With any luck, they won’t even have to enter a courtroom!

It almost seems too good to be true.

And it is.

The Litigators is a tremendously entertaining romp, filled with the kind of courtroom strategies, theatrics, and suspense that have made John Grisham America’s favorite storyteller.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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Rosie’s Avid Readers #RBRT Second Wind by Dick Francis #bookreview

Rosie's Avid Readers

Rosie’s Avid readers are people who like reading and have a book to tell us about, they are the voice of a friend who says ” I just read this book….”

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Avid Reader’s Thoughts

This book is a fast moving tale wrapped around a dramatic meteorological event.

Book Description

“Second wind” is the other side of the dead eye in a tropical storm. BBC TV meteorologist Perry Stuart’s fellow forecaster offers him a Caribbean hurricane-chasing ride in a small airplane as a holiday diversion. But Trox island has secrets hidden in a safe, and cows, and deadly dangers.

Find a copy here from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

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