25 July 2009

Review: Cruel and Unusual by Patricia Cornwell

Cruel and Unusual by Patricia Cornwell book coverThe Kay Scarpetta series seems to get better and better with each book, and this was no exception. I enjoyed this murder mystery and the further character development that was evident throughout the novel.

I especially enjoyed learning that Kay Scarpetta had given up smoking, as I cringed every time she lit up a cigarette in the morgue. I found it interesting to read about the new and emerging forensic techniques used by the characters that we are so familiar with today.

As well as being part of a well know series, this is also a stand alone book, and I'd recommend it to anyone who likes to read crime fiction.

My rating = ***

Carpe Librum!
21 July 2009

Review: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald book coverAfter reading this much acclaimed American classic, I was baffled. "What is so great about The Great Gatsby?" I've given this question much thought and I still don't have the answer.

I honestly believe this short book lacks the bones and elements of a classic and even on the last page I was waiting for the 'light bulb' moment. In fact, this novel reminded me of Breakfast at Tiffany's for it's simplicity and classification as an American classic that I failed to understand.

I know my opinion isn't popular in the literary world, but if you read this book and believe it worthy to be called a classic, I'd love to hear your opinions, so leave me a comment.

My rating = **

Carpe Librum!
12 July 2009

Review: The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon book cover
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon was published in 2005 and was very popular in Australia; however, it wasn't until a friend told me recently it was her favourite book of all time, that I finally got around to reading it. My only regret is not reading it sooner.

Set in Barcelona in the 1950s, I was engrossed from the beginning, and desperate to visit the Cemetery of Forgotten Books with the main character and roam the bookshelves until the end of time. I was immediately enthralled by the plot, the writing style and the unfolding drama of the story.

The Shadow of the Wind has all of the elements I love in a book: mystery, intrigue, history, fear, love, hate, family secrets, drama, big old mansions, humour, murder, books, broken dreams and broken hearts. While I was reading it, I woke up every morning looking forward to picking it up again, and I was very sorry when it was finished.

The characters and their stories totally swept me away, and I can confidently say this is the best book I've read in a while. I'd recommend it to anyone!

My rating = *****

Carpe Librum!
10 July 2009

Review: All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell

All That Remains by Patricia Cornwell book coverThis is the third in the Kay Scarpetta series, and is another great forensic/police procedural. It had the same elements as her earlier two books, although the political element was a lot more convincing and worked well into the plot line.

I was happy to find there was less time spent on the romance with the FBI character Mark, and I enjoyed seeing Marino pick up his act and give himself a makeover.

I would have liked more of an insight into the killer; however, it was a good ending and I look forward to the next in the series.

My rating = ***

Carpe Librum!