Reviews

Memoir/Biography

All the Young Men by Ruth Coker Burks

Reviewed by Rod McLary While the origins of HIV/AIDS remain uncertain, it seems that it was first recognised as a pandemic in the early 1980s.  There was then much confusion and misinformation about how it was transmitted and, in some circles, HIV/AIDS was known as the ‘homosexual disease’.  Indeed, in the 1980s, it was given

Read More »
Travel

Beyond Possible by Nimsdai Purja

Reviewed by Norrie Sanders Humans start to die above 8000m unless they have a supply of oxygen. Fourteen mountains on the planet rise above 8000m. Even with oxygen, the climbs are steep and dangerous and there is only a short climbing window each season when conditions are suitable. So climbing all of those peaks in

Read More »
Children

The Ickabog by J.K. Rowling

Reviewed by Gerard Healy This is the first children’s book by the renowned J.K. Rowling after her hugely successful Harry Potter series which broke records for world-wide sales. It’s probably fair to say that this one is not in the Harry Potter league, but nevertheless, it’s a charming tale that should entertain children and the

Read More »
Children

Code Name Bananas by David Walliams

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve As an avid reader who grew up in the era when Enid Blyton was the most exciting writer of children’s books, it was with a blend of delight and envy that that I read Code Name Bananas by David Walliams. Delight because it is a riotous tale of a young boy,

Read More »
Humour

The 2020 Dictionary by Dominic Knight

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve The subheading reads, ‘The definitive guide to the year the world turned to shit’, with which most of the population would heartily agree. In 536, due to a volcano erupting in Iceland, it is supposed, the earth was in darkness for 18 months. Crops failed. Many died. This catastrophe was followed

Read More »
Crime/Mystery

Hideout by Jack Heath

Reviewed by Rod McLary The genre of crime and thriller fiction is a tough arena to break into. Populated by giants of the genre such as Ian Rankin, James Lee Burke and Harlen Coben – just to name a very small few – competition is fierce.  As an aficionado of the genre, I always look

Read More »
Memoir/Biography

A Most Surprising Man by Mary Anne Fitzgerald

Reviewed by Ian Lipke This book is an expression of love. It was written to be a testament to love. It is a message to the reader that Leonie Matheson has an immutable love for her grandfather. This is captured within the covers, but overflows. It reveals itself within the prologue. A reader cannot do

Read More »
Children

The Quokka’s Guide to Happiness by Alex Cearns

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve The subtitle reads: a little bit of wisdom from the happiest animal on the planet. The Quokka enjoys its fame by featuring in countless photos and selfies. It is found mostly on Rottnest Island off the coast of Western Australia, a short boat trip from Perth. The quokka is loved by

Read More »
Children

The Traitor: Wolf Girl 4 by Anh Do

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke The Wolf Girl adventure series is written for 8-14-year-old readers by Vietnamese-born Australian Anh Do. What a versatile person this author is. Not only does he write books, but he is often seen gracing our screens as the portrait painter in Anh’s Brush with Fame or in movies or as a

Read More »
Travel

Clanlands by Sam Heughan and Graham McTavish

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke The wording on the cover of this book, showing a photo of the authors in their kilts, says ‘Whisky, Warfare, and a Scottish Adventure Like No Other’. On the back cover it also says ‘Two Men, One Country. And lots of whisky’. What more needs to be said? Diana Gabaldon, who

Read More »
General Fiction

Under the Golden Sun by Jenny Ashcroft

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke Sometimes when you start reading a book you feel compelled to keep on reading until the whole story emerges. This is how it was for me with Jenny Ashcroft’s Under The Golden Sun. I kept being driven back to continue reading. It is hard to understand why. Was it because the

Read More »
Children

Future Friend by David Baddiel

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve Future Friend is an engaging story that presents an imagined life 1,000 years from now and the contrasting way we existed in 2019. By 3020, the population has reached twenty-four billion.  Chickens become militant and it is accepted as wrong to kill animals for food. Pigs are intelligent beings, some capable

Read More »
Children

When We Say Black Lives Matter by Maxine Beneba Clarke

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve Maxine Beneba Clarke, passionate about human rights and social justice, has created a book for children that throbs with colour and emotion. This tumultuous year has produced events that must question a young child’s ability to make sense of their world. The media, especially television, depicted horrific scenes of the murder

Read More »
Scroll to Top