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<h1 id="mf-title">The Bookbag</h1>
 
<h1 id="mf-title">The Bookbag</h1>
 
Hello from The Bookbag, a site featuring books from all the many walks of literary life - [[:Category:Fiction|fiction]], [[:Category:Biography|biography]], [[:Category:Crime|crime]], [[:Category:Cookery|cookery]] and anything else that takes our fancy. At Bookbag Towers the bookbag sits at the side of the desk. It's the bag we take to the library, the charity shop and the bookshop. Sometimes it holds the latest releases, but at other times there'll be old favourites, books for the children, books for the home. They're sometimes our own books or books from the local library. They're often books sent to us by publishers and we promise to tell you exactly what we think about them. You might not want to read through a full review, so we'll give you a quick review which summarises what we felt about the book and tells you whether or not we think you should buy or borrow it. There are also lots of [[:Category:Interviews|author interviews]], and all sorts of [[:Category:Lists|top tens]] - all of which you can find on our [[features]] page. If you're stuck for something to read, check out the [[Book Recommendations|recommendations]] page.
 
Hello from The Bookbag, a site featuring books from all the many walks of literary life - [[:Category:Fiction|fiction]], [[:Category:Biography|biography]], [[:Category:Crime|crime]], [[:Category:Cookery|cookery]] and anything else that takes our fancy. At Bookbag Towers the bookbag sits at the side of the desk. It's the bag we take to the library, the charity shop and the bookshop. Sometimes it holds the latest releases, but at other times there'll be old favourites, books for the children, books for the home. They're sometimes our own books or books from the local library. They're often books sent to us by publishers and we promise to tell you exactly what we think about them. You might not want to read through a full review, so we'll give you a quick review which summarises what we felt about the book and tells you whether or not we think you should buy or borrow it. There are also lots of [[:Category:Interviews|author interviews]], and all sorts of [[:Category:Lists|top tens]] - all of which you can find on our [[features]] page. If you're stuck for something to read, check out the [[Book Recommendations|recommendations]] page.
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[[image:League games.jpg|center|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/video/primesignup/ref=acph_piv?tag=AssociateTrackingID=thebookbag-21]] <br>
  
 
There are currently '''{{PAGESINCATEGORY:Reviews}}''' reviews at TheBookbag.
 
There are currently '''{{PAGESINCATEGORY:Reviews}}''' reviews at TheBookbag.
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'''Read [[:Category:New Reviews|new reviews by category]]. '''<br>
 
'''Read [[:Category:New Reviews|new reviews by category]]. '''<br>
  
'''Read [[:Category:Features|the latest features]].'''
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'''Read [[:Category:Features|the latest features]].''' <!-- INSERT NEW REVIEWS BELOW HERE-->
 
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{{Frontpage
{|class-"wikitable" cellpadding="15" <!-- INSERT NEW REVIEWS BELOW HERE-->
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|author=Seishi Yokomizo and Louise Heal Kawai (translator)
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|title=The Honjin Murders
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|rating=4
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|genre=Crime
[[image:1788542347.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1788542347/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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|summary=To many readers, the phrase 'locked room murder mystery' is enough to make the book one to read; preferably quantified by the words 'clever' or 'good'. For those who need more, here is the extra background – we're in rural Japan in the 1930s. The oldest son of an esteemed family is belatedly getting married, although the whole affair is really not as ostentatious as it might be hardly anybody has turned up, what with it being arranged at great haste. She only has an uncle representing her family, for one thing. Either way, the celebrations have gone ahead as planned, only for the wedded couple to be slashed to death in their private annex before the sun rises on their marriageWhat with a man missing parts of his fingers being in the neighbourhood, and some mysterious use of a traditional musical instrument at the time of the crime, this case has a lot of the peculiar about it.
 
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|isbn=1782275002
 
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}}
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{{Frontpage
===[[Snowflake, AZ by Marcus Sedgwick]]===
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|author=Cixin Liu
 
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|title=Death's End
[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Literary Fiction|Literary Fiction]]
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|rating=5
 
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|genre=Science Fiction
This is a deep, interesting read unlike any book I've read in quite some time. The novel's story follows a young man named Ash in the process of joining a community of sick people in the curiously named town of Snowflake, Arizona. These people are sick, but it's not a sickness you've heard of. Instead, they're environmentally ill – affected by household chemicals and fabrics, pesticides, static electricity, and radiation – and their only ''cure'' is to stay in the town away from the real world. Though it's about a real place, the people in it are fictional. It really is a place apart, quite literally cut off from the outside world – people are even required to decontaminate themselves thoroughly before becoming fully integrated. [[Snowflake, AZ by Marcus Sedgwick|Full Review]]
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|summary= If I'd been paying more attention when I picked this book up, I would have put it back on the shelfNot because I didn't want to read it, but because I'd have figured out that it was the final part of a trilogy. Coming in part way through a saga is never the easiest thing to do and it's particularly true in science fiction because without knowing the back-story there are not just people whose names mean nothing to you (when it's assumed they will) but there are whole concepts that you won't understandThis latter is particularly true of Cixin Liu's work – his range is phenomenalGeorge R R Martin, who knows a thing or two about world-creation, described it as ''a unique blend of scientific and philosophical speculation, conspiracy theory and cosmology''. All of that and more.
 
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|isbn=1784971650
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{{Frontpage
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|isbn=1780894511
[[image:178747920X.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/178747920X/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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|title=Die Alone
 
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|author=Simon Kernick
 
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|rating=4
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|genre=Thrillers
===[[Brightfall by Jaime Lee Moyer]]===
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|summary=Ray Mason is in prison awaiting trial for murder and he's in the vulnerable prisoner unit: as a cop he's something of a target, but the unit is not as secure as the inmates would have hoped and Mason is injured in a riotOn his way to hospital he's broken free by armed men and an offer is made to himHe's to assassinate the man who is likely to become the country's next prime minister and he'll then be given a new identity so that he can start afresh abroadHis captors say that they're MI6, but Mason has his doubtsHis choices are limited though and he has personal reasons to believe that it would be better if Alastair Sheridan was dead.
 
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[[image:4.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Fantasy|Fantasy]], [[:Category:Historical Fiction|Historical Fiction]]
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{{Frontpage
 
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|author=Akwaeke Emezi
Robin Hood is gone denouncing both his former life and his love Marian, and retreating to a monastery – although no-one knows quite what led him to abandon all that he had built. Marion's life since has been relatively quiet - but when her friends start dying, Marion is tasked by Father Tuck to break the curse surrounding them and to save their lives. Setting off with a soldier, a Fey Lord and a sullen Robin Hood, she becomes tangled in a maze of betrayals, complicated relationships, and a vicious struggle for the throne…[[Brightfall by Jaime Lee Moyer|Full Review]]
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|title=Pet
 
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|rating=4.5
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|genre=Teens
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|summary=The people of the town Lucille believe that all the monsters are gone.  Their children are raised to understand that they were saved by the angels, those who rid the town of evil, and there are no monsters anymore. But one day, Jam accidentally cuts herself, and bleeds a little onto one of her mother's paintings. The blood awakens a bizarre, terrifying-looking creature named Pet, who somehow comes to life and declares that it is here to hunt the monster. Though Jam tries to convince it that all the monsters are gone, Pet is certain that there is one, still, and that the monster is hiding in the home of her best friend, Redemption.
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|isbn=0571355110
[[image:1509896465.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1509896465/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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}}
 
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{{Frontpage
 
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|isbn=1686751680
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|title=My Mummy does weird things / Maman fait des choses bizarres
===[[The Nightjar by Deborah Hewitt]]===
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|author=Amelie Julien and Gustyawan
 
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|rating=4
[[image:4.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Fantasy|Fantasy]], [[:Category:Literary Fiction|Literary Fiction]]
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|genre=For Sharing
 
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|summary=Which child doesn't think that there mother is, well, ''weird''? It might be that in the morning their mother doesn't like speaking much, when every self-respecting child knows that that is when you're at your brightest with lots to say? ''Why'' then does Mummy stick her fingers in her ears? Then there's doing yoga in front of the television, which could be worrying if it wasn't so funny. We won't go into too much detail about what goes on in the bathroom and the colour changes which have occured when Mummy emerges and frankly, the less said the better about her reactions to your artistic efforts on the wallI mean, what else would you use paint for?
''The Nightjar'' is an unusual and exciting story. Alice Wyndham lives a normal life in London until she finds a box on her doorstep one morning and her life begins to unravel, fast. From that very moment, her life is flooded with magic, loss, expectation and particularly, betrayal. As everything around her shifts, all that she knows, all that she thinks she knows, must change. Who can she trust? Who must she trust? Who will she trust? More importantly, can she even trust herself? [[The Nightjar by Deborah Hewitt|Full Review]]
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{{Frontpage
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|author=Justine Avery and Liuba Syrotiuk
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|title=What Wonders Do You See... When You Dream?
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|rating=4
[[image:0241365953.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0241365953/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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|genre=For Sharing
 
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|summary=''The day has ended''<br>
 
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''Hasn't it been splendid?'' <br>
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''But now, it's time, to be sure'' <br>
===[[American Royals by Katharine McGee]]===
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''For an entirely different adventure'' <br>
 
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:General Fiction|General Fiction]]
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Two and a half centuries ago, America won the Revolutionary War and General George Washington was offered the crown. Today, the House of Washington still sit on the thrown with Princess Beatrice next in line. Beatrice's whole life has been building up to her ruling the United States and the time for her reign is imminent. [[American Royals by Katharine McGee|Full Review]]
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[[image:0857308025.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07VRSX3SN/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Dead Flowers (Dr Sian Love) by Nicola Monaghan]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Crime|Crime]]
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It was more than a little bit of a surprise to Dr Sian Love (and the rest of the relatives) when her uncle Bobby left her his home - a former pub called The Loggerheads in the Narrow Marsh area of NottinghamThen it was a shock when she found two bodies in the cellar before she'd even got settled in - and managed to break a bone in her foot in the course of making the discovery.  They'd been there for some time, but who - exactly - were the man and the woman, wrapped in each other's arms?  Having spent ten years on the Murder Squad, ending up as a DCI she knows what's going to happen next, but she's not prepared for quite how personal it's all going to get. [[Dead Flowers (Dr Sian Love) by Nicola Monaghan|Full Review]]
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[[image:1526613689.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1526613689/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Teens|Teens]]
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Amara's twelfth birthday is coming up and she wants nothing more for it than a trip to New York to meet her father's side of the family. But her father hasn't spoken to Amara's grandfather for many years - Amara doesn't know why - and both her parents are resistant to the idea. But Amara is nothing if not persistent and a school family history project provides her with the perfect wedge. Eventually, her parents give in and off she goes... with a secret mission from her mother: to bring her father and Grandpa Earl back together again.  [[Some Places More Than Others by Renee Watson|Full Review]]
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[[image:194927201X.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/194927201X/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Lakes of Mars by Merritt Graves]]===
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[[image:4.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Science Fiction|Science Fiction]]
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Aaron Sheridan doesn't want to live anymore. His entire family is dead by his own hand, killed in a shuttle crash. Unable to deal with the guilt, he signs up for the Fleet expecting a fatal deployment to the Rim War, but instead ends up at their most prestigious command school, Corinth Station... [[Lakes of Mars by Merritt Graves|Full Review]]
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[[image:191280493X.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/191280493X/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21
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]]
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===[[Coming of Age by Danny Ryan]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Autobiography|Autobiography]]
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''He began writing novels and poetry at the age of twelve, but it was to take him a further forty-eight years to realise that he wasn’t very good at either. Consistently unpublished for all that time, he remains a shining example of hope over experience...''
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''This a memoir from someone you have never heard of - but will feel like you have.'' [[Coming of Age by Danny Ryan|Full Review]]
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[[image:1983376353.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1983376353/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Lighthouse of the Netherworlds by Maxwell N Andrews]]===
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[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Teens|Teens]], [[:Category:Fantasy|Fantasy]], [[:Category:Confident Readers|Confident Readers]]
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The phrase about never trusting a book by its cover is something I put on a par with comments about MarmiteYou're supposed to love it or hate it and I'm halfway between, and likewise the old adage is halfway true.  From the cover of this I had a child-friendly fantasy, what with that name and that attractive artwork of an attractive girl reaching for an attractive water plant.  That was only built on by the initial fictionalised quotes, with their non-standard spelling, as if texts of scripture in this book's world predated our standardised literacy. But why was I two chapters in and just finding more and more characters, both human and animal, and more and more flashbacks, and no proof that this was what I'd bought in for? [[Lighthouse of the Netherworlds by Maxwell N Andrews|Full Review]]
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[[image:1542007232.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1542007232/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[The Rabbit Girls by Anna Ellory]]===
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[[image:3star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:General Fiction|General Fiction]], [[:Category:Historical Fiction|Historical Fiction]]
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Berlin, 1989.  Miriam is in the middle of a city freshly united, with the Wall newly broken down and people able to cross at liberty for the first time in decades.  She is in the middle of such euphoria, but cannot feel it, for she has not left her father's apartment in weeks, nursing him as he lies dyingOne standard bed-bath, however, is very different, when he gasps the name ''Frieda'' that she does not recognise and she sees for the first time ever a tattoo for his camp inmate identity under his watchOne bombshell outside, then, and two inside... [[The Rabbit Girls by Anna Ellory|Full Review]]
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[[image:0954899520.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0954899520/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[A Winter Book by Tove Jansson]]===
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[[image:5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Literary Fiction|Literary Fiction]], [[:Category:Short Stories|Short Stories]]
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Tove Jansson's worldwide fame lasts on the Moomin books, written in the 1940s and later becoming television characters of the simplicity, naivety and sheer 'goodness' that would later produce flowerpot men or teletubbies. Simple drawings, simple stories, simple goodness. What is often forgotten outside of her native Finland is that she was a serious writer…that she wrote for adults as well as children…and that she had a feeling for the natural world and the simple life that not only informed those child-like trolls but went far beyond any fantasy of how the world might be. [[A Winter Book by Tove Jansson|Full Review]]
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[[image:1782692177.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1782692177/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[The Collective by Lindsey Whitlock]]===
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[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Teens|Teens]]
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''Illinois Territory, Collective Homesteads of America.''  Some people live in sunken houses, buried into hillsides to disguise how large their property is at times of austerity.  Others are called Foresters, for they live and work in trees. When the small area the Foresters live in is placed under compulsory purchase, the residents are given a pitiful amount to clear out before they get manfully cleared out.  Our hero, Elwyn, has just left the trees for the Hills, to live with an uncle and learn their ways – he's just of age to decide things for himself, and he has decided to see how the other half lives... [[The Collective by Lindsey Whitlock|Full Review]]
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[[image:099944235X.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/099944235X/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[The Man Who Killed Hitler by Andre Pronovost]]===
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[[image:3star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Historical Fiction|Historical Fiction]]
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Germany is split.  Some of her is in favour of Hitler and the Nazis, but much isn't.  Some of her is stuck to the east fighting the Soviets, but some will soon have to be on the other front, against the Americans coming into the continent to put things right as they see itFinding out that the war to the east isn't working, due to Hitler's tactical ineptitude and inability to heed advice, some people reckon Stalin is five seasons away from being in BerlinThe only way to shore things up, and repair the splits, is to kill Hitler, and luckily the Baron Nicholas is the man to do it.  He's aristocratic enough, he knows enough people in industry, society and other circles of power, so once he's succeeded he might be able to keep a German presence in EuropeBut will he still be able to keep the capitalists and communists from meeting in the middle? [[The Man Who Killed Hitler by Andre Pronovost|Full Review]]
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[[image:1509889566.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1509889566/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[The Long Call (Two Rivers) by Ann Cleeves]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Crime|Crime]], [[:Category:LGBT Fiction|LGBT Fiction]]
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When we first meet DI Matthew Venn he's at his father's funeral, although 'at' rather overstates the proximity.  He sees everyone - his mother and the preacher included from a distance - but he doesn't go itHe wouldn't be welcome.  Those attending are part of the Barum Brethren and the teenage Matthew was thrown out when he told the congregation how wrong they were in their beliefs.  It coincided with him leaving university and joining the police force.  The announcement of Matthew's marriage to Jonathan Church was in the local paper and whilst he doesn't know if his father saw it, he can't imagine that it will have gone down well. [[The Long Call (Two Rivers) by Ann Cleeves|Full Review]]
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[[image:0241351391.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0241351391/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Max Kowalski Didn't Mean It by Susie Day]]===
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[[image:4.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Confident Readers|Confident Readers]]
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When Max’s dad finds himself in a spot of hot water, he disappears for a few days, leaving Max in charge of his three younger sisters, Thelma, Louise and Ripley.  Max has no problem with stepping up to fill his dad’s shoes and be the man in charge, but when his dad still doesn’t come home, he starts to panic that interfering grown ups will realise that the children are home-alone, and that they will step in and separate the family.  So Max takes his sisters to Wales, to hide out in a friend’s cottage.  It won’t be for long, surely?  Because his dad wouldn’t miss Christmas, would he?  [[Max Kowalski Didn't Mean It by Susie Day|Full Review]]
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<!--Merritt Graves -->
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[[image:1949272028.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1949272028/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Sunlight 24 by Merritt Graves]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category: Science Fiction|Science Fiction]]
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If the game wasn’t fair before, it’s definitely not fair now. Or so thinks Dorian Waters, part of the ever-expanding portion of humanity who can’t afford the nano-implant and genetic augmentation regimen known as Revision. And because he can’t afford Revision, he can’t get into college, he can’t get a job. And when he sees the brilliant and mesmerizing Lena for the first time, he knows he doesn’t have a chance with her, either. And so, Dorian robs a house with his best friend, Ethan. Then they do it again. They’re able to keep at it until they have enough money saved up for their first Revision. Their initial choices in self-enhancement start impacting their future choices, which in turn impact their future Revision––on and on in a downward spiral of self-destruction... [[Sunlight 24 by Merritt Graves|Full Review]]
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[[image:075157628X.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/075157628X/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Drowned Lives by Stephen Booth]]===
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[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Crime|Crime]]
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When council officer Chris Buckley is approached by an old man who wants his help in healing a decades' old family rift he's reluctant to get involved, but then Chris is reluctant to get involved in anything but a pint in the pub these days. It could just be the way that he is, or the fact that he's just lost both his parents within three months of each other.  He's currently existing in the family home and wondering when he's going to be made redundant from his job with the council. The short answer to that one is 'soon'.  Chris does his best to deter the old man, but it's not before he's left a lot of papers with his neighbour. Then the old man is murdered and the police come calling on Chris. [[Drowned Lives by Stephen Booth|Full Review]]
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<!-- Kalpesh Ashar -->
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[[image:1949395324.jpg|link=http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1949395324/ref=nosim?tag=thebookbag-21]]
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===[[Financial Accounting Essentials You Always Wanted To Know: 4th Edition by Kalpesh Ashar]]===
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[[image:4star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Business and Finance|Business and Finance]]
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''Financial Accounting Essentials You Always Wanted to Know ''gives people without an accounting background, who have risen in a company, the knowledge to understand the accounts which show how the company is doing.  The book begins by looking at why financial accounting systems are necessary, then moves on to give an excellent overview of the types of accounting systems which will be encountered and the terms used. We then look in detail at the balance sheet, the income statement and the statement of cash flows.  If you understand these three sections on a set of accounts they will tell you a storyYou will understand the company (or indeed any other business) but if you don't understand what's there you will be missing vital clues as to whether or not the company is thriving. [[Financial Accounting Essentials You Always Wanted To Know: 4th Edition by Kalpesh Ashar|Full Review]]
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===[[Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass by Mariko Tamaki and Steve Pugh]]===
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[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Teens|Teens]], [[:Category:Graphic Novels|Graphic Novels]]
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Harleen Quinzel is new in town.  She always, to me, seems new in town, even if she's been around a long time, for she always has a very fresh attitude, and seems to look out of those large eyes at everything anew each time.  But here she is new in town, and the town is Gotham City.  Expecting a year-long furlough from life with her mother, she finds her gran dead and herself with no option but to stay with a bunch of drag queens.  She also finds school is a drag, she also finds the whole neighbourhood is being redeveloped by a large and uncaring corporation – but she also finds two characters that will have a big impact on her life.  One is a civil-minded lass called Ivy, the other someone she only meets at night – a lad with a singular graffiti tag and a mind for violence and chaos, who calls himself The Joker… [[Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass by Mariko Tamaki and Steve Pugh|Full Review]]
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===[[The Summer Book by Tove Jansson]]===
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[[image:5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[Literary Fiction]]
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Tove Jansson's short novel about Summer is several worlds away from the Moomintrolls she is most famous for outside her native Scandinavia. Book yourself an afternoon this Summer, and take yourself and The Summer Book somewhere quiet, preferably within sight and sound of the sea, settle back and prepare to be transported. [[The Summer Book by Tove Jansson|Full Review]]
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===[[The Dirty Dozen (Jane Tennison 5) by Lynda La Plante]]===
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[[image:3.5star.jpg|link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews]] [[:Category:Crime|Crime]]
+
 
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Jane Tennison had worked hard to get a place on the Flying Squad and she felt that she was there on merit.  The Squad wondered who she'd slept with to get the place and bets were being taken as to who she'd sleep with in the first week.  What none of them - Jane included - knew was that she was there as an experiment, in the hope that a female presence would have a calming effect.  The job had been advertised and Jane was the only female who applied who ticked all the boxes.  She doesn't tick all the boxes for the head of the Squad, DCI Murphy.  He wanted someone with at least ten years' experience, and the appropriate set of genitals - and he's determined that Jane will fail. [[The Dirty Dozen (Jane Tennison 5) by Lynda La Plante|Full Review]]
+
 
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I hope you haven't forgotten how it feels to be much too excited for bed. If you're a parent at least, you'll know how it is to persuade an excited small person that yes, it is in fact time for bed. ''What Wonders DoYou See...'' sets out to cater to these children. Instead of trying to persuade them that night time is calm time, it takes a slightly different tack. It tells them that sleep is actually an exciting time: a time of dreams in which imagination takes over and has no limit. But the trick in accessing this wonderful and exciting world, is to get calm and relaxed first so that you can easily fall asleep and open the door to it. 
|}
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|isbn=194812422X   
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|author=Michael Harris
 +
|title=Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World
 +
|rating=5
 +
|genre=Lifestyle
 +
|summary= This is not the book I was expecting it to be. For some reason I expected it to be another self-help manual on how to find calm, how to step outside the mainstream, but it is not that at all.  Instead of telling us how, it is more about the ''why''.  Harries examines how we're eroding solitude, which used to be a natural part of our human life, and why that matters.  Of course he talks about how some people have found solitude and what has come of that, and eventually in the final chapter he talks about his own experience of having deliberately sought it out, but mostly he wanders down the alleys and by-ways that his thinking about this lost art led him.
 +
|isbn=1847947662
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|author=Andy Briggs
 +
|title=Ctrl+S
 +
|rating=5
 +
|genre=Science Fiction
 +
|summary= Life in the near future's not all bad. We've reversed global warming and fixed the collapsing bee population. We even created SPACE, a virtual-sensory universe where average guys like Theo Wilson can do almost anything they desire. But almost anything isn't enough for some. Every day, normal people are being taken, their emotions harvested - and lives traded - to create death-defying thrills for the rich and twisted. Now Theo’s mother has disappeared. And as he follows her breadcrumb trail of clues, he'll come up against the most dangerous SPACE has to offer: vPolice, AI Bots and anarchists - as well as a criminal empire that will kill to stop him finding her . . .
 +
|isbn=1409184641
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1609809378
 +
|title=The Rabbits' Rebellion
 +
|author=Ariel Dorfman and Chris Riddell
 +
|rating=4.5
 +
|genre=Confident Readers
 +
|summary=We're in the realm of the rabbits, only the foxes and wolves have taken over.  King Wolf, His Wolfiness, has declared the rabbits don't exist, but the pesky birds have spread rumours from awing that the bunnies are in fact still around.  Demanding a propaganda spree, King Wolf orders a humble monkey to be his official portrait photographer, but whatever the poor innocent monkey prints out in his darkroom there is a distinct leporine hint.  Can King Wolf succeed in proving himself victorious, can the rabbits show their continued existence to all who need to know of it – and what can the poor monkey caught in between do?
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|author=Innosanto Nagara
 +
|title=M is for Movement
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=Emerging Readers
 +
|summary=Set in Indonesia, in the not too distant past, this is a story about social change.  Dealing with some difficult issues, such as political corruption and nepotism, the book is neither boring nor preachy.  It educates gently, with vibrant, challenging illustrations, and it portrays how social movements need people who will try, even when it seems that they will fail.  The message is a positive one; that in an increasingly uncertain world, we do still have the power to instigate change.
 +
|isbn=1609809351
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1780724047
 +
|title=A Dictionary of Interesting and Important Dogs
 +
|author=Peter J Conradi
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=Pets
 +
|summary=I struggle to resist a book about dogs, but I did wonder why this one was so ''thin'': given that I've never encountered a dog who wasn't interesting or important - and probably both, I was expecting a massive tome.  But ''A Dictionary of Interesting and Important Dogs'' is actually ''a rich compendium of the world's most significant and beloved dogs'' and it's certainly a rich treasure trove.  We begin with Peter J Conradi's four collies: Cloudy, Sky. Bradley and Max.  They're consecutive rather than simultaneous dogs, but what comes over is Conradi's love for each and every one of them.  I knew that I was in safe hands.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1785769294
 +
|title=Man at the Window (Detective Cardilini)
 +
|author=Robert Jeffreys
 +
|rating=4.5
 +
|genre=Crime
 +
|summary=It's when we read that a young boy is creeping reluctantly to a teacher's bedroom one October night that we realise something is badly wrong.  Nowadays you ''might'' hope that something would be done about it fairly quickly but this was 1965 and child abuse was generally regarded as malicious mischief on the part of the child.  The boy would be safe that night though - albeit in the most horrific fashion.  When he reached Captain Edmund's bedroom he found the man dead on the floor, the top of his skull missing.  The school's initial reaction was that this was a dreadful accident: there had been a cull of kangaroos in some nearby fields and it was obviously a stray bullet which had killed the Captain.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1786695227
 +
|title=Invisible in a Bright Light
 +
|author=Sally Gardner
 +
|rating=4.5
 +
|genre=Confident Readers
 +
|summary=The beginning of this excellent story will leave the reader more than a little confused: who is the man in the green suit, what is the Reckoning, and why are rows of people in a cave?  But stick with it – Ms Gardner is very cleverly letting us experience the same disorientation as our heroine. We watch in dismay as the strange man, who seems to have no eyes, does his best to persuade her to answer his questions. But for some reason Celeste, despite her bewilderment, remains wary and gives nothing away.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1912374854
 +
|title=Violet
 +
|author=S J I Holliday
 +
|rating=3.5
 +
|genre=Thrillers
 +
|summary=I've never been but understand that travelling is all about meeting new people and forming instantaneous bonds with people in often chance situations. Well that's exactly what happens when the two main/only characters meet in a travel agency in Beijing - Carrie is unsuccessfully trying to get a refund on an extra ticket for the Trans-Siberian train and Violet is trying to unsuccessfully buy a ticket for the same sold-out journey. As the two team up, travelling through Mongolia, Serbia and into Russia, it could've been the start of a beautiful friendship but this a thriller after all so it quickly becomes a tale of obsession, manipulation and toxic friendships.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1912374838
 +
|title=Nothing Important Happened Today
 +
|author=Will Carver
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=General Fiction
 +
|summary=Nothing Important Happened Today is a dark, twisted, difficult read. Stories about cults often are, but this is different; it's written with a sense of style that is quite unlike anything I've read before. I can't remember ever having read a novel with such an odd, distinctive narrative voice. While a slim and relatively small book, the slow-moving nature of the plot makes it feel far larger than its 276 pages.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn= williamabbey
 +
|title=The Pursuit of William Abbey
 +
|author=Claire North
 +
|rating=3.5
 +
|genre=Paranormal
 +
|summary=When William Abbey fails to prevent the lynching of a young boy in 1880's South Africa, he finds himself cursed by the grieving mother. A naïve English Doctor, he slowly learns the weight of the curse upon him, as the shadow of the dead boy begins to follow him across the world. Never stopping, always growing – it crosses oceans and mountains in pursuit of William. As he finds himself unable to resist speaking the truths that he hears in others, he also learns that the dark shadow is deadly – and seeks to kill the one he loves the most…
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1643785036
 +
|title=The Wondrous Apothecary
 +
|author=Mary E Martin
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=General Fiction
 +
|summary=Those who have known Alexander Wainwright, the landscape artist famous for his Turner prize winning ''The Hay Wagon'', and Rinaldo, renowned conceptual artist would say that they're chalk and cheese, if not sworn enemies.  If you've watched the relationship, as has our narrator, art dealer Jamie Helmsworth, you'd have said that they were magnets, drawing and repulsing each other in equal measure.  Wainwright was at the socially acceptable end of the artistic continuum, but with Rinaldo it was all too obvious that there was but a fine dividing line between conceptual art and public nuisance.  As time has worn on, he's frequently been brought to the attention of the police.  On this latest occasion we see him charged with arson and theft of ''The Hay Wagon''.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|author=Mary H.K. Choi
 +
|title=Permanent Record
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=Teens
 +
|summary=Pablo, a college drop-out, is working at a New York bodega.  He's massively in debt, he's avoiding his mother, and he finds his joy in creating unusual snacks with random ingredients! Whilst working one evening, he's surprised to discover that the girl he is chatting with as he serves is a super-famous pop star and, as unlikely as it may seem, they start a relationship.  With one character who is trying very hard not to be seen or noticed by anyone, and the other who is seen and followed and hounded by everyone all over the world, it's an interesting clash as they come together.  This isn't just a love story though, and actually it's really just Pab's story, about the journey he takes in his life via his meet-up with Leanna Smart.
 +
|isbn=0349003459
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1609809319
 +
|title=Long-Haired Cat-Boy Cub
 +
|author=Etgar Keret, Aviel Basil and Sondra Silverston (translator)
 +
|rating=5
 +
|genre=Confident Readers
 +
|summary=One day a boy is in the zoo with his father, when the man gets called away on urgent business.  The boy isn't hustled into a cab and taken home first, though, no – he's given hot dog money, and taxi money, and told to just stick around on his own and enjoy himself.  Well, it's no surprise that the orphan-for-an-afternoon sensation the lad feels doesn't make him happy, and so he thinks of a species name for himself, and curls himself up into an empty cage, as if he were a new exhibit.  And it's then the drama begins…
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=1785785516
 +
|title=Fucking Good Manners
 +
|author=Simon Griffin
 +
|rating=4
 +
|genre=Lifestyle
 +
|summary=Manners maketh man, they say.  It certainly makes life easier if everybody abides by a set of conventions, some of which are ages old and other which have evolved over time.  Manners are not about how much to tip or how you should behave if you get an invitation to Buckingham Palace, they have nothing to do with class or financial status:  they're about getting the basics right before we try to deal with more difficult matters.  Of course we all have more relaxed manners when we're with family and friends, but it's best if we learn to distinguish between our public and private lives and to act appropriately.  ''Fucking Good Manners'' aims to help us on the way.
 +
}}
 +
{{Frontpage
 +
|isbn=0008324859
 +
|title=Fowl Twins
 +
|author=Eoin Colfer
 +
|rating=5
 +
|genre=Confident Readers
 +
|summary=Relax, everyone – our old friend Artemis may be off planet, but the baddies aren't getting away with skulduggery any time soon because they now have not one but two members of the Fowl family to contend with. Those cute little twins are now eleven (and, frankly, cute no longer) and in this, their first independent adventure, they meet a troll and without even trying manage to make two deadly enemies: a nobleman obsessed with immortality whatever the cost (to other people), and an unusual interrogator-nun. The boys are chased, kidnapped, arrested and even killed (though not for long), all with the help of one trainee fairy.
 +
}}

Latest revision as of 09:57, 5 December 2019

The Bookbag

Hello from The Bookbag, a site featuring books from all the many walks of literary life - fiction, biography, crime, cookery and anything else that takes our fancy. At Bookbag Towers the bookbag sits at the side of the desk. It's the bag we take to the library, the charity shop and the bookshop. Sometimes it holds the latest releases, but at other times there'll be old favourites, books for the children, books for the home. They're sometimes our own books or books from the local library. They're often books sent to us by publishers and we promise to tell you exactly what we think about them. You might not want to read through a full review, so we'll give you a quick review which summarises what we felt about the book and tells you whether or not we think you should buy or borrow it. There are also lots of author interviews, and all sorts of top tens - all of which you can find on our features page. If you're stuck for something to read, check out the recommendations page.

League games.jpg

There are currently 15,316 reviews at TheBookbag.

Want to find out more about us?

Reviews of the Best New Books

Read new reviews by category.

Read the latest features.

1782275002.jpg

The Honjin Murders by Seishi Yokomizo and Louise Heal Kawai (translator)

4star.jpg Crime

To many readers, the phrase 'locked room murder mystery' is enough to make the book one to read; preferably quantified by the words 'clever' or 'good'. For those who need more, here is the extra background – we're in rural Japan in the 1930s. The oldest son of an esteemed family is belatedly getting married, although the whole affair is really not as ostentatious as it might be – hardly anybody has turned up, what with it being arranged at great haste. She only has an uncle representing her family, for one thing. Either way, the celebrations have gone ahead as planned, only for the wedded couple to be slashed to death in their private annex before the sun rises on their marriage. What with a man missing parts of his fingers being in the neighbourhood, and some mysterious use of a traditional musical instrument at the time of the crime, this case has a lot of the peculiar about it. Full Review

1784971650.jpg

Death's End by Cixin Liu

5star.jpg Science Fiction

If I'd been paying more attention when I picked this book up, I would have put it back on the shelf. Not because I didn't want to read it, but because I'd have figured out that it was the final part of a trilogy. Coming in part way through a saga is never the easiest thing to do and it's particularly true in science fiction because without knowing the back-story there are not just people whose names mean nothing to you (when it's assumed they will) but there are whole concepts that you won't understand. This latter is particularly true of Cixin Liu's work – his range is phenomenal. George R R Martin, who knows a thing or two about world-creation, described it as a unique blend of scientific and philosophical speculation, conspiracy theory and cosmology. All of that and more. Full Review

1780894511.jpg

Die Alone by Simon Kernick

4star.jpg Thrillers

Ray Mason is in prison awaiting trial for murder and he's in the vulnerable prisoner unit: as a cop he's something of a target, but the unit is not as secure as the inmates would have hoped and Mason is injured in a riot. On his way to hospital he's broken free by armed men and an offer is made to him. He's to assassinate the man who is likely to become the country's next prime minister and he'll then be given a new identity so that he can start afresh abroad. His captors say that they're MI6, but Mason has his doubts. His choices are limited though and he has personal reasons to believe that it would be better if Alastair Sheridan was dead. Full Review

0571355110.jpg

Pet by Akwaeke Emezi

4.5star.jpg Teens

The people of the town Lucille believe that all the monsters are gone. Their children are raised to understand that they were saved by the angels, those who rid the town of evil, and there are no monsters anymore. But one day, Jam accidentally cuts herself, and bleeds a little onto one of her mother's paintings. The blood awakens a bizarre, terrifying-looking creature named Pet, who somehow comes to life and declares that it is here to hunt the monster. Though Jam tries to convince it that all the monsters are gone, Pet is certain that there is one, still, and that the monster is hiding in the home of her best friend, Redemption. Full Review

1686751680.jpg

My Mummy does weird things / Maman fait des choses bizarres by Amelie Julien and Gustyawan

4star.jpg For Sharing

Which child doesn't think that there mother is, well, weird? It might be that in the morning their mother doesn't like speaking much, when every self-respecting child knows that that is when you're at your brightest with lots to say? Why then does Mummy stick her fingers in her ears? Then there's doing yoga in front of the television, which could be worrying if it wasn't so funny. We won't go into too much detail about what goes on in the bathroom and the colour changes which have occured when Mummy emerges and frankly, the less said the better about her reactions to your artistic efforts on the wall. I mean, what else would you use paint for? Full Review

194812422X.jpg

What Wonders Do You See... When You Dream? by Justine Avery and Liuba Syrotiuk

4star.jpg For Sharing

The day has ended
Hasn't it been splendid?
But now, it's time, to be sure
For an entirely different adventure

I hope you haven't forgotten how it feels to be much too excited for bed. If you're a parent at least, you'll know how it is to persuade an excited small person that yes, it is in fact time for bed. What Wonders DoYou See... sets out to cater to these children. Instead of trying to persuade them that night time is calm time, it takes a slightly different tack. It tells them that sleep is actually an exciting time: a time of dreams in which imagination takes over and has no limit. But the trick in accessing this wonderful and exciting world, is to get calm and relaxed first so that you can easily fall asleep and open the door to it. Full Review

1847947662.jpg

Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World by Michael Harris

5star.jpg Lifestyle

This is not the book I was expecting it to be. For some reason I expected it to be another self-help manual on how to find calm, how to step outside the mainstream, but it is not that at all. Instead of telling us how, it is more about the why. Harries examines how we're eroding solitude, which used to be a natural part of our human life, and why that matters. Of course he talks about how some people have found solitude and what has come of that, and eventually in the final chapter he talks about his own experience of having deliberately sought it out, but mostly he wanders down the alleys and by-ways that his thinking about this lost art led him. Full Review

1409184641.jpg

Ctrl+S by Andy Briggs

5star.jpg Science Fiction

Life in the near future's not all bad. We've reversed global warming and fixed the collapsing bee population. We even created SPACE, a virtual-sensory universe where average guys like Theo Wilson can do almost anything they desire. But almost anything isn't enough for some. Every day, normal people are being taken, their emotions harvested - and lives traded - to create death-defying thrills for the rich and twisted. Now Theo’s mother has disappeared. And as he follows her breadcrumb trail of clues, he'll come up against the most dangerous SPACE has to offer: vPolice, AI Bots and anarchists - as well as a criminal empire that will kill to stop him finding her . . . Full Review

1609809378.jpg

The Rabbits' Rebellion by Ariel Dorfman and Chris Riddell

4.5star.jpg Confident Readers

We're in the realm of the rabbits, only the foxes and wolves have taken over. King Wolf, His Wolfiness, has declared the rabbits don't exist, but the pesky birds have spread rumours from awing that the bunnies are in fact still around. Demanding a propaganda spree, King Wolf orders a humble monkey to be his official portrait photographer, but whatever the poor innocent monkey prints out in his darkroom there is a distinct leporine hint. Can King Wolf succeed in proving himself victorious, can the rabbits show their continued existence to all who need to know of it – and what can the poor monkey caught in between do? Full Review

1609809351.jpg

M is for Movement by Innosanto Nagara

4star.jpg Emerging Readers

Set in Indonesia, in the not too distant past, this is a story about social change. Dealing with some difficult issues, such as political corruption and nepotism, the book is neither boring nor preachy. It educates gently, with vibrant, challenging illustrations, and it portrays how social movements need people who will try, even when it seems that they will fail. The message is a positive one; that in an increasingly uncertain world, we do still have the power to instigate change. Full Review

1780724047.jpg

A Dictionary of Interesting and Important Dogs by Peter J Conradi

4star.jpg Pets

I struggle to resist a book about dogs, but I did wonder why this one was so thin: given that I've never encountered a dog who wasn't interesting or important - and probably both, I was expecting a massive tome. But A Dictionary of Interesting and Important Dogs is actually a rich compendium of the world's most significant and beloved dogs and it's certainly a rich treasure trove. We begin with Peter J Conradi's four collies: Cloudy, Sky. Bradley and Max. They're consecutive rather than simultaneous dogs, but what comes over is Conradi's love for each and every one of them. I knew that I was in safe hands. Full Review

1785769294.jpg

Man at the Window (Detective Cardilini) by Robert Jeffreys

4.5star.jpg Crime

It's when we read that a young boy is creeping reluctantly to a teacher's bedroom one October night that we realise something is badly wrong. Nowadays you might hope that something would be done about it fairly quickly but this was 1965 and child abuse was generally regarded as malicious mischief on the part of the child. The boy would be safe that night though - albeit in the most horrific fashion. When he reached Captain Edmund's bedroom he found the man dead on the floor, the top of his skull missing. The school's initial reaction was that this was a dreadful accident: there had been a cull of kangaroos in some nearby fields and it was obviously a stray bullet which had killed the Captain. Full Review

1786695227.jpg

Invisible in a Bright Light by Sally Gardner

4.5star.jpg Confident Readers

The beginning of this excellent story will leave the reader more than a little confused: who is the man in the green suit, what is the Reckoning, and why are rows of people in a cave? But stick with it – Ms Gardner is very cleverly letting us experience the same disorientation as our heroine. We watch in dismay as the strange man, who seems to have no eyes, does his best to persuade her to answer his questions. But for some reason Celeste, despite her bewilderment, remains wary and gives nothing away. Full Review

1912374854.jpg

Violet by S J I Holliday

3.5star.jpg Thrillers

I've never been but understand that travelling is all about meeting new people and forming instantaneous bonds with people in often chance situations. Well that's exactly what happens when the two main/only characters meet in a travel agency in Beijing - Carrie is unsuccessfully trying to get a refund on an extra ticket for the Trans-Siberian train and Violet is trying to unsuccessfully buy a ticket for the same sold-out journey. As the two team up, travelling through Mongolia, Serbia and into Russia, it could've been the start of a beautiful friendship but this a thriller after all so it quickly becomes a tale of obsession, manipulation and toxic friendships. Full Review

1912374838.jpg

Nothing Important Happened Today by Will Carver

4star.jpg General Fiction

Nothing Important Happened Today is a dark, twisted, difficult read. Stories about cults often are, but this is different; it's written with a sense of style that is quite unlike anything I've read before. I can't remember ever having read a novel with such an odd, distinctive narrative voice. While a slim and relatively small book, the slow-moving nature of the plot makes it feel far larger than its 276 pages. Full Review

Williamabbey.jpg

The Pursuit of William Abbey by Claire North

3.5star.jpg Paranormal

When William Abbey fails to prevent the lynching of a young boy in 1880's South Africa, he finds himself cursed by the grieving mother. A naïve English Doctor, he slowly learns the weight of the curse upon him, as the shadow of the dead boy begins to follow him across the world. Never stopping, always growing – it crosses oceans and mountains in pursuit of William. As he finds himself unable to resist speaking the truths that he hears in others, he also learns that the dark shadow is deadly – and seeks to kill the one he loves the most… Full Review

1643785036.jpg

The Wondrous Apothecary by Mary E Martin

4star.jpg General Fiction

Those who have known Alexander Wainwright, the landscape artist famous for his Turner prize winning The Hay Wagon, and Rinaldo, renowned conceptual artist would say that they're chalk and cheese, if not sworn enemies. If you've watched the relationship, as has our narrator, art dealer Jamie Helmsworth, you'd have said that they were magnets, drawing and repulsing each other in equal measure. Wainwright was at the socially acceptable end of the artistic continuum, but with Rinaldo it was all too obvious that there was but a fine dividing line between conceptual art and public nuisance. As time has worn on, he's frequently been brought to the attention of the police. On this latest occasion we see him charged with arson and theft of The Hay Wagon. Full Review

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Permanent Record by Mary H.K. Choi

4star.jpg Teens

Pablo, a college drop-out, is working at a New York bodega. He's massively in debt, he's avoiding his mother, and he finds his joy in creating unusual snacks with random ingredients! Whilst working one evening, he's surprised to discover that the girl he is chatting with as he serves is a super-famous pop star and, as unlikely as it may seem, they start a relationship. With one character who is trying very hard not to be seen or noticed by anyone, and the other who is seen and followed and hounded by everyone all over the world, it's an interesting clash as they come together. This isn't just a love story though, and actually it's really just Pab's story, about the journey he takes in his life via his meet-up with Leanna Smart. Full Review

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Long-Haired Cat-Boy Cub by Etgar Keret, Aviel Basil and Sondra Silverston (translator)

5star.jpg Confident Readers

One day a boy is in the zoo with his father, when the man gets called away on urgent business. The boy isn't hustled into a cab and taken home first, though, no – he's given hot dog money, and taxi money, and told to just stick around on his own and enjoy himself. Well, it's no surprise that the orphan-for-an-afternoon sensation the lad feels doesn't make him happy, and so he thinks of a species name for himself, and curls himself up into an empty cage, as if he were a new exhibit. And it's then the drama begins… Full Review

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Fucking Good Manners by Simon Griffin

4star.jpg Lifestyle

Manners maketh man, they say. It certainly makes life easier if everybody abides by a set of conventions, some of which are ages old and other which have evolved over time. Manners are not about how much to tip or how you should behave if you get an invitation to Buckingham Palace, they have nothing to do with class or financial status: they're about getting the basics right before we try to deal with more difficult matters. Of course we all have more relaxed manners when we're with family and friends, but it's best if we learn to distinguish between our public and private lives and to act appropriately. Fucking Good Manners aims to help us on the way. Full Review

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Fowl Twins by Eoin Colfer

5star.jpg Confident Readers

Relax, everyone – our old friend Artemis may be off planet, but the baddies aren't getting away with skulduggery any time soon because they now have not one but two members of the Fowl family to contend with. Those cute little twins are now eleven (and, frankly, cute no longer) and in this, their first independent adventure, they meet a troll and without even trying manage to make two deadly enemies: a nobleman obsessed with immortality whatever the cost (to other people), and an unusual interrogator-nun. The boys are chased, kidnapped, arrested and even killed (though not for long), all with the help of one trainee fairy. Full Review