Hello fellow book lovers - it's Spring and for some I guess the focus shifts to other things than reading. However - a good book is always a winner. I have found myself taking a short lunch time break outside in our office garden over the last two weeks or so, enjoying the great weather and reading a few pages to clear my head from all the work stuff. I am loving the fact that for the first time in many years, I am still on track with my yearly reading challenge. Since my last books post I have read two books:
The Peacock Emporium by Jojo Moyes
At the same time she is forced to deal with her mother and the memories others have of her - the one she never met and am convinced died giving birth to her.
The Peacock Emporium constantly switch in time frames, places and characters a lot like other of Jojo Moyes's earlier books. At first I could not get into it but by a quarter in I actually started enjoying it. Towards the end I found my that I read with a growing unease - which may simply mean that the story moved in directions that may not be within my comfort zone.
I did enjoy reading the book but the story line is tedious at times and the book is possibly much longer that it has to be. What I did love about the books are the wonderful full bodied characters that populate it.
It's one of those "good enough" books if you get what I am saying - a 6/10 for me.
Moordvis/Dead in the Water by Irna van Zyl
Although I have read the book in Afrikaans I will do my review in English as it is also available translated.
To start of I have to say that this is possibly my most favorite genre to read - and there is a wonderful amount of great books written in it available in Afrikaans with very high standards and great reading to be enjoyed. I therefore read this book with a lot of maybe unfair expectations after good reviews in the press.
Irna van Zyl is a well known Afrikaans media personality and editor. This is her first novel and takes place in Grootbaai (or then Gansbaai) the shark cage diving capital of the world. It features Storm van der Merwe a detective punished after an incident and reduced to admin work. She discovers a body on a walk on the beach with dogs. The storyline develops from there.
The storyline in itself is well constructed and moves at a reasonable pace although at times it felt a bit slow. It is full of the necessary intrigues and complicated cross involvements and makes for a good read. What did bother me though was the characters and development of them - or more then - the lack therof. Storm herself is comes across as cold although I am quite sure that was not the intention. To me she showed very little development taking into account all that happens and I did not find myself forming a particular attachment to her which I guess is not the worst of it. But Moerdyk - gosh, does every novel in this genre need an alcoholic policeman - as if Bennie Griesel has set that mark as a "has to have"? Moerdyk to me has very little or nothing that sparks even the faintest sympathy and no development whatsoever.
Moordvis or Dead in the Water is a good read but not in my top reads - a 6/10
So what are you reading? Any ones to add to my "to read" list?