Sunday, December 24, 2017

The Bubble Boy by Stewart Foster


Joe is a boy of 11 who has lived in a hospital room since he was 2 months old because he has no immune system to stop himself from getting sick. Joe only has a few things to keep him entertained: tv and video games, his laptop where he in touch with another boy in the States with the same disease, his sister, and his nurses. His sister, Beth, struggles with the decision to move away for school because their parents died a few years ago. That's right. This poor kid is stuck in a bubble and his parents have both died in a car crash. His favourite nurse is Greg and he gets a new on Amir who is a bit of an odd character. He always looks out the window, supposedly looking for UFOs. But maybe Amir can help Joe experience a little more of life?

This book is a very easy read and a fairly emotional one at that. However something was a bit off about it, that keeps me from giving it a higher mark. I think it was a couple of things. First, I didn't fully understand Joe's illness. It makes sense that he has no immune system and needs purified air. But why does that make him consistently tired? The other oddity was Amir's obsession with aliens. Was there any point to it other than for conversation? He seemed a pretty smart guy but then had this weird obsession with aliens. Why?

I'm sure kids would enjoy this book. It wasn't bad, just not fantastic.

First Line: "'I've got a tattoo.'"


Friday, December 15, 2017

The Wild Numbers by Philibert Schogt


Isaac Swift is a mathematics professor that has come up with no meaningful proofs during his tenure. He's feeling lost. His girlfriend tries to lure him away from constant sessions of math but eventually gives up and leaves him. Isaac is depressed, which sinks him further in to long sessions of math in the middle of the night. Issac finds inspiration in an unlikely source and thinks he has come up with a solution for the wild numbers. He is quickly accused of plagiarism but he doesn't think it's true.

Isaac is a pretty depressing guy to read about. We learn how he got in to math as a way to escape as a kid and that what Isaac really needs is some counselling. And that's pretty much the theme of this book: Isaac needs help. He never gets help though, and has to fail to success (sort of?). It's not the funnest read in the world because of how depressing it is but it's ok.

First Line: "Five plus three equals eight."


Friday, December 08, 2017

Eve Green by Susan Fletcher


Pregnant with her first child, Eve goes down memory lane remembering her single mother and losing her at a young age. Eve went to live with her grandparents in Whales after this tragedy on farm land.

125 pages in to the book and that's really all I could tell you that the book was about because it was so slow going. Eve's future husband worked on the farm and there could have been a story there about how they fell in love with each other but that never really started. There also may have been a girl missing but we only met her about 115 pages in and it was just about how she wasn't the nicest girl. Almost half way through the book and I got fed up with the lack of progress being made and decided to give up.

First Line: "Three things happened when I was seven years old."


Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie


Detective Hercule Poirot winds up on the Orient Express as he tries to get back home to assist with an investigation. His friend has procured him a ticket as he owns part of the train line. The train stops in the middle of the night due to a snow storm and by the morning, one of the passengers is dead. Poirot must interview all of the passengers in his car and determine who committed this murder.

My mom got me this book as a gift a while ago saying that if I only read one Agatha Christie book in my life, this should be it. While it's not the best mystery I've ever read, it was still a fun one. There's a finite number of options as to what could have happened on this train. Working through all the clues with Poirot and the inconsistencies in the story is entertaining. Most of them I didn't even notice until they were pointed out. This is a great short mystery.

First Line: "It was five o'clock on a winter's morning in Syria. "


Monday, December 04, 2017

Garden of Lamentation by Deborah Crombie


Notting Hill's private gardens are a sanctuary for those that live surrounding them, until one night the body of a local young woman is found dead in them. The girl is identified as Reagan Keating, nanny to a male young upcoming dancer. Detective Gemma Jones is included on the case as she is a friend of a friend of the victim's employer and knows some of the parties involved. Her and DI Kerry Boatman start to investigate.

Gemma is super busy at work but has problems at home too. Her husband Kincaid (also a cop) gets a call that his father is in the hospital so he races out of town to make sure he is ok. His father ends up being fine, but on his way home he stops to investigate the suicide of a friend and undercover cop whom he cannot believe actually killed himself.

This is book 17 in the well-established Kincaid/Jones series. Since I had never read any of the previous novels, I feel like I missed a lot of who the characters were and all the previous cases and issues they had been through. Very little was mentioned to help a new reader pick this series up at this book and make sense of it. For example, Kincaid is investigating the undercover cop's death, there has obviously been history between those two from previous books and a reason for Kincaid to believe he hadn't killed himself. Having no awareness of that history, I couldn't connect to this story line as I knew nothing about the undercover cop or why Kincaid would think this way.

The other confusing part for a new-to-series reader is the number of characters in this book. It took me 50 pages to realize that Kincaid and Duncan were the same people. The author mentions everyone by their first name with the exception of Kincaid who is mentioned by his last name. I'm not sure why there is this discrepancy but it was confusing for me.

For the mystery that was self-contained within this novel, I enjoyed it. The murderer wasn't too obvious and the story of snobby neighbours was believable.

Definitely start from the first book in this series. If you're already invested, you should enjoy this book!

You can purchase this book at Harper Collins. Thank you to TLC Book Tours for letting me be a part of this tour.

First Line: "She stood at the bus stop, shuffling her feet."

About the Author
Crombie lives in McKinney, Texas with her husband, two German Shepherd Dogs, and two cats. She travels to Britain frequently to research her books.

Find her on Twitter, Facebook and at her website.

Friday, December 01, 2017

Bridget Jones' Diary by

Chick Lit

Bridget Jones wants to start her year off right. Lose weight, drink less, smoke less. She starts at a new years party where her parents are trying to set her up with Mark Darcy. Bridget isn't having any of that though. She has her eyes on another man from work.

Bridget writes in her diary for us every few days, telling us of the humorous and horrendous predicaments she gets herself in to. Typical to these types of novels written as diaries, the novel is written from the characters perspective while things happen on that day, not like the character is writing a diary. I always found that odd with diary books. A person doesn't sit there and write in between everything incorrectly happening. Why do people write books this way?

I read this book because it was on the BBC top 100 (#75). I personally don't think it's worth of that list, though it was a fun read.

First Line: "I will not drink more than fourteen alcohol units a week."