24 June 2008

Review: Shatter | Michael Robotham

I was pleased to come across this Australian author while watching the ABC TV Show First Tuesday Book Club. Robotham was a guest and he mentioned something to the effect that his wife wouldn't speak to him after reading his last book as it was so 'scary'.

That was enough for me to hit the net and google his book Shatter and I came across the following passage:
"There is a moment when all hell disappears, all pride is gone, all expectation, all faith, all desire. I own that moment. It belongs to me. That's when I hear the sound, the sound of a mind breaking. It's not a loud crack like when bones shatter or a spine fractures or a skull collapses. And it's not something soft and wet like a heart breaking. It's a sound that makes you wonder how much pain a person can endure; a sound that shatters memories and lets the past leak into the present; a sound so high that only the hounds of hell can hear it."
Well, I've finished the book and I can say that this was above all the best passage, and one that I won't forget in a long time. However the remainder of the novel had all the ingredients of a best selling thriller by Koontz or Patterson but with a new writing style that I really enjoyed. The main character had Parkinson's disease which was interesting although the book sped along towards a predictable ending without any real twists. I would have liked to read more about the background of the 'killer' but I guess 'snippets' of information are what build the suspense.

All in all, I enjoyed my introduction to this Australian author, and I would certainly enjoy reading one of his novels over a James Patterson any day. I hope his popularity amongst book lovers continues to increase.

(I'm going to give him an extra star for the passage above).

My rating = ****

Carpe Librum!

07 June 2008

Review: The Death Chamber | Sarah Rayne

I found out about this author in Good Reading Magazine and I was so glad I did! What appealed to me was that every book by this author has a haunting, creepy historical building, and she brings it to life in the book. This was very true in The Death Chamber where the focus of the story was Calvary Gaol.

The blurb on the back of the book doesn't really do it any justice. I enjoyed multiple plots interwoven with many twists and turns and a few surprises. I was left wanting to follow each of the plots further, but that was what kept me turning the pages into the night. In fact, one of the surprises had me going back to the start to read over a particular section. (In the same way you want to watch Sixth Sense again when you know the twist).

Based on the title of the book, you could be mistaken in thinking that this book will be full of bloodshed and carnage, but in fact it's not. Trust me, you don't need that to make you jump. Rayne does a magnificent job of describing the gaol, you almost feel like you're there.

I can't wait to read another of her books.

My rating = ****

Carpe Librum!