Thursday, November 29, 2012

Regarding Ducks and Universes by Neve Maslakovic

I love thought experiments and this book didn't disappoint as one. I was sucked into the premise straight from the first page. This books explores the answer to the question about choices we make in life. Even the tiniest event can make long lasting changes to the world.
At some point in time our universe has bifurcated into Universe A and B. Each universe now follows a different set of rules and the main character Felix A is taken on a wild ride as he makes the crossing to Universe B. He faces the consequences of the changes in the alternate universe as he explores his relationship with the people he meets there.
The main character was easy to relate to and the explanations and analogies where interesting without being condescending. An interesting read if you like the combination of science, fiction and adventure.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

Artemis Fowl. What a great ride. A hero who is a criminal mastermind from a long line of criminal masterminds. It's like a cross between Harry Potter and The Sopranos.
Artemis Fowl is an eleven year old boy who is the heir to a  criminal empire and he has found a way to make contact with fairies.  And if that doesn't entice you he teams up with a centaur technical specialist, a bodyguard the size of a small house and travels around the world, ours and fairies, to do what he does best. Outsmart everyone!
I read the series voraciously and had a great time doing it. I do hope this gets signed up as a movie as I would love to watch it at the cinemas. I may even take my kids.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Frank McCourt (1930-2009)

I was very saddened today to hear of the death of the author of Angela’s Ashes today as I read today on:


I recall reading his book a few years back and his struggle with poverty and hardship in Ireland really touched me. His ability to find humour in hardship made the story all the more wonderful. Who can ever forget the confessional scene?

Although he tried to continue the genre in ‘Tis’ and ‘Teacher Man’ his first novel will remain as one of my favourite stories. I do recall it transferred well to the big screen. Together they are the must Read and See for everyone.

Rest In Peace Frank.

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

If a book started with the rape and murder of a teenage girl, you could be forgiven for assuming you were reading a script for Law and Order SVU. The fact is that this story isn’t a murder mystery or a detective novel.
“My name is Salmon, Like the fish’ Susie introduces herself but before she can tell us more about herself her story is over, or is it?
Susie floats away to heaven after her death and watches over her family. She sees them as they try and fail to cope with her death and as they move along with their lives. She watches as her mother has an affair, brought on by her father’s in ability to let go of her, her sister’s love life and the life her killer leads after the murder.
I don’t want to give too much away but this story is heart warming, dramatic and despite it’s theme a feelgood novel that I think no one should miss.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Procession of the Dead by D. B. Shan


What a roller coaster ride this book was!

I bought it at one of the discount bookstores to make up some number and left it on my shelf at work for a good four months before picking it up. What a mistake that was. I already tracked down the other two books in this trilogy and can’t wait to read them.

The story is that of Capac Raimi who wants to work as a gangster in “The City”. But to do so successfully he needs to get the positive attention of “The Cardinal”. A ruthless leader who literally runs the city. Politicians, mobsters, almost everyone has a tie back to him. As Capac finds his way through he realises there is more to this Cardinal, and for that matter himself, that he is originally aware of.

I was first drawn in when the Cardinal and all his close family made it onto the scene but as I progressed I became more and more engrossed in the story of the City and that of Capac Raimi.

This is a must for those who enjoy a combination of intrigue, mystery and black magic.

Bangkok Tattoo by John Burdett

What an interesting story this book was “farang”.
Thai police detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep talks to the reader as he investigates the murder of a CIA agent. In this book you are shown a different point of view of what is known as the seedy side of Thailand. Prostitutes, lady boys and all the associated businesses are explained and the reader gets to see them in a different light. I always enjoy reading books when the reader is taken a step closer to the local culture than the TV documentaries allow.
Anyway, I recommend this book as a very interesting read as well as a very compelling story.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

This trilogy in five parts has to be my all time favourite read. Now I know there are more than enough reviews, and since these books have been a radio series, talking books, tv shows and a movie it would almost seem redundant for me to mention them but I must pay homage to my favourite author. In fact Douglas Adams was, until his recent passing, one of the five people I desired to meet. In fact I wish he were around today so I could follow his twitter feed. No doubt he would keep his fans amused for ever.
As for the series, well here are some of the characters one would meet along the way.
– Zaphod Beeblebrox, a two headed egotistical president of the universe
– Slartibartfast, creator of planets and winner of the design award for his fjords
– Marvin the Prozac deprived robot
And for what these characters would encounter what could be more interesting than
– A Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, a drink that has the effect of having your brain smashed out by a gold brick wrapped in a slice of lemon
– A Total Perspective Vortox
– An elevator that can see into the future
And the heart of gold, infinite improbability drive.
To be honest no review could do these series justice and maybe they arent everyone’s cup of tea but those who do enjoy Douglas Adams are not simply fans but devout followers.
And if none of this enticed you to read the books then all I can say is “42″!