Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Let's talk books

Its Tuesday - the day I try to (sometimes) talk about books and gosh yes, it has been a while. So a rundown on the last 4 books I have read - by chance I see all of them can vaguely fall into the thriller/ murder mystery category.
The Redeemer by Jo Nesbo
I have read a good share of Jo Nesbo's Harry Hole series but this one in all honesty is my favorite up to date. In the midst of a freezing cold December a Salvation army officer is shot in public. But nobody has any recollection of who shot him or can recognize a face from the newspaper photos taken at the event. Our friend Harry has to find the murder while also dealing with a new boss and as always trying to stay sober.

What a story? Full of twists and turns and many surprises on the way this is an excellent read that speaks much deeper than the obvious story line. If this is at all your cup of tea, give it a read. a well deserved 10 / 10.

Zululand Snow by Ian Tennent
Craig, Sean and Hannes are 3 rather typical boys of their time - growing up in a fictional town in Zululand in the 1980's. Full of gusto and spirit they conquer the bush with their BMX bikes and seek adventure of the rather historical kind. They deal with imaginary but also some very real threats in the process resulting in a fast paced adventure of note.

I really enjoyed this book for so many reasons. One of them is without a doubt that I can place myself in the time frame with ease. I grew up with Casio watches and Mongoose bikes and cyclone Demoina is still vivid in my memory. They could have been my friends at school - although I wish I had the honour to grow up in this more rural setting. The author sets the scenes in a perfectly described world where you can smell the dust and the rain and feel the heat on your skin. The story line is well paced and enough suspense to keep one turning page after page without thinking about how late it is.

I am a bit in two minds as to how I feel about the very beautiful descriptive language the author use. Although I love it in most of the places there were times where I felt that it interfered with the pace of the action and I almost wanted to glace over them. That being said, I did find myself sometimes going back to re read once I had the tension released in the part to enjoy the writing again.

Although classified as Young Adult I thoroughly enjoyed the book - but then I am a tad partial towards Young Adult books and read them often enough. Ian Tennet is going to make a name for himself in the South African literary circle with this book - a solid 8/10

Disclaimer: I  was given an electronic copy of this book to review in exchange for an honest review. 

Prooi deur Fanie Viljoen 
Prooi is die verhaal van 3 jong mense - Owen, gedrewe oosterse vegkuns tier, Cody, doellose selfgeabsorbeerde narcis en Lauren, beeldskoon en sensueel maar sonder werklike anker. Die drie se paaie kruis met mekaar en die geheime klub "Black Valentine" met sy misterieuse eienaar is waar als bymekaar kom.

Aanvanklik het ek die boek klaar gelees en gesug en gedink, aarde, maar as die jeug vandag so is het ons reuse probleme. Die drie hoofkarakters het my almal intens geirriteer.  Ek besef dat ek geen raakpunt met daardie generasie en hulle probleme het nie. Maar hoe meer ek dink aan die boek hoe meer meen ek dit is tog die lees werd - tog die nadink en waarskuwing.

'n Redelike storie met 'n spanningslyn wat my nie altyd geboei het nie - dink ek tog sal party mense die boek werklik geniet, 6,5/10.

I am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes.
I really do not know where to start with this review apart from saying that it is possibly one of the best books in this genre that I have ever read. Meet Pilgrim, an outsider, an orphan,  a spy in the most secret of worlds and a top class thinker. Meet Saracen - a traumatized boy, a physician, a terrorist out on revenge and also a top class thinker. Their worlds collide to dramatic effect in a city I once visited, Bodrum in Turkey to the backdrop of the international world of the rich and famous.

What I really liked about the book is that the background and history of the characters provide so much substance to add to and excellent tension filled story line. The background spans years over many continents while the pace never slacks. The language is relatively simple and makes for very easy reading. It is a gripping 800 plus pages that I could gladly have extended with another few hundred.

Fast paced filled with many credible and fully coloured characters it is a MUST READ if you are at all a fan of this genre.  All the hype is not for nothing. But what I like most of all is that the characters are so real - their thinking, their motivations and their decision all ring true to them and their background. Another great 10/10 .



17 comments:

  1. I love your book reviews. I have read "I am Pilgrim" and enjoyed it a lot. Brilliant writing. I also read A man called Ove" from your last review, and enjoyed it too. I think you may like "Gone Girl."

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    1. I found Gone Girl ok - clever story - I am sure I have a review somewhere. But have you read Sharp Objects also by Gillian Flynn? Absolutely brilliant!

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  2. Nothing like a good book, hey...

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  3. Pilgrim must be one of my absolute favourite books - I wonder if it will be as good the second time you read it?

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    1. Someone at the bookclub last night said that she wants to read it a second time as she is sure one miss quite a bit because of the action pace I tend to agree.

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  4. Oooh thanks for the reviews.The Redeemer and I am Pilgrim is going right on my reading list :)

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  5. I also really enjoyed Zululand Snow. This is the 2nd recent reference I've seen to I am Pilgrim, must put it on my to read list

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    1. Oh you have to read Pilgrim!

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  6. Great reviews. These are definitely going onto my to-read list.

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  7. Ooooh!!! Thanks so much for this! I've had I Am Pilgrim next to my bed for months now, just never got around to actually getting into it - you've inspired me that it's very next on my list to read!

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    1. I actually had it on mine for about 2 months before I started and then I could not believe I did not immediately read it.

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  8. The Redeemer by Jo Nesbo - Hello my friend, am I able to read this book on its own or do I need the back story to fully grasp it? Not read Jo Nesbo before.

    I am pilgrim, does it fall under psychological thriller?

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    1. I would put I am Pilgrim in the spy thriller category. Jo Nesbo is a bit like Deon Meyer - each book can stand on its own but there is value if you read them in order. Read "The Devils Star" before you read "The Redeemer" and do not read "The Leopard" before you read "The SNowman".

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  9. I loved I am Pilgrim...can't wait for the new book this month.

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    1. Me too - I hope the lady that buys for the bookclub this month gets it

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So what's on your mind?