My bookshelf is a subject I love talking about because there is a story behind it (isn’t there always?) and yet again a party, well small gathering really, of some lovely girls I like to spend time with, and a fortune teller. However, I’ll get back to that in a moment. Now I realise you are looking at my empty bookshelves in puzzlement…they contain no books.
Excellent observation. In order for my writing room to look chic for my small gathering, I had to stuff all my books into “the abyss” (my under stairs cupboard ) and in my bedroom. I have lacked the motivation to enter “the abyss” again to retrieve them. It’s dark and dangerous in there. You must balance your body precariously over sleeping bags, garden cushions, and sharp implements. I often launch myself inside like a scrum half, I push and shove until I find what it is that I’m looking for, or not, which is usually the case. To inform the gathering, I send out a group text without engaging my brain.
J.A. Kerr: Fancy an evening of fizz and fortune telling?
The resounding yes, led me to a complete meltdown and a serious Turbo Tidy. I stared at my bulging, sagging bookshelves in despair. I Googled “chic book cases” and was shocked that this entailed, no books! I was confused. Aren’t they called bookshelves for a reason? The clue is in the name: a shelf for books, but who am I to go agaisnt the designer trends. Out went the books (yes I did feel guilty as they stared at me mutiniously from the large Ikea shopping bag) and in went the useless objects—no good to man nor beast. I stood back and sighed. I missed my books already but did concede to a certain arty minimalism. I was gratified as everyone complimented my new bookshelves at the gathering. My chest swelled with pride until the words, “Show us your book, then.”
My face flushed as ( you’ve guessed it) I realised with horror, my own book was in “The Abyss”, fortunately a bowl of crisps and top up of fizz distracted them. The next day I went in, narrowly avoiding a punctured lung from the golf clubs, to retrieve my pride and joy. Lesson learned, treat your books with respect. They are someones labour of love…
I’m digressing, sorry. Since I cannot write about what is on my bookshelf unless the challenge was changed to, What is in J.A. Kerr’s Abyss? That sounds a bit dodgy, I will write about what I would have on my shelves, not strictly my latest reads but perhaps the most memorable.
WARNING: THESE BOOKS ARE DIFFERENT, SMART, INTRIGUING, AND COMPELLING!
The Sandman by Lars Kepler. GENRE: CRIME.
Jurek Walter is serving a life sentence. Kept in solitary confinement, he is still considered extremely dangerous by psychiatric staff. He’ll lull you into a sense of calm.Mikael knows him as “The Sandman”. Seven years ago, he was taken from his bed along with his sister. They were both presumed dead. He has one target left.
When Mikael is discovered on a railway line, close to death, the hunt begins for his sister. To get to the truth, Joona Linna will need to get closer than ever to the man who stripped him of a family; the man who wants Linna dead.
I was drawn into the story immediately and could not stop reading. The authors, writing as Lars Kepler, Swedish writers Alexander Ahndoril and Alexandra Coelho Ahndoril have had considerable success with a series of crime novels featuring their indomitable and charismatic Detective Inspector Joona Linna. The Sandman is fourth in the series and it does not disappoint. Fantastic storyline with compelling characters and a pace that builds with every page. Intelligent writing that will keep you coming back for more.
The Help by Kathryn Stockett GENRE: HISTORICAL FICTION
Enter a vanished and unjust world: Jackson, Mississippi, 1962. Where black maids raise white children, but aren’t trusted not to steal the silver…
There’s Aibileen, raising her seventeenth white child and nursing the hurt caused by her own son’s tragic death; Minny, whose cooking is nearly as sassy as her tongue; and white Miss Skeeter, home from College, who wants to know why her beloved maid has disappeared. Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny. No one would believe they’d be friends; fewer still would tolerate it. But as each woman finds the courage to cross boundaries, they come to depend and rely upon one another. Each is in a search of a truth. And together they have an extraordinary story to tell…
I loved this book. I smiled, laughed and cried my way through it and to me, an author’s ability to make me do all three…is a triumph! I strongly recommend you read this book, it’s fantastic. ( A note to all authors…be careful who you base your characters on!)
A lawsuit against Kathryn Stockett, the author of best-selling novel “The Help,” has divided brother and sister in a dispute about the real-life identity of one of her fictional characters.Ablene Cooper, the longtime nanny for Stockett’s brother, has filed a $75,000 lawsuit against the author, claiming she was upset by the book that characterizes black maids working for white families in the family’s hometown of Jackson, Miss., during the 1960s.Cooper also once babysat for Stockett’s daughter, according to the Jackson Clarion Ledger, and the lawsuit alleges that she had been assured by Stockett, 42, that her likeness would not be used in the book.The 2009 novel was an instant favorite among book clubs, written in the voice of black “help” by a woman raised by maids herself and who is white.Cooper, 60, maintains that the book’s fictional character — Aibileen Clark — is her. She says the alleged unauthorized appropriation of her name and image is emotionally upsetting, and her employers, Carol and Robert Stockett III agree.
Flowers in The Attic by Virgina Andrews. GENRE: HORROR. An oldie but a goodie.
At the top of the stairs there are four secrets hidden. Blond, beautiful, innocent, and struggling to stay alive…
They were a perfect family, golden and carefree—until a heartbreaking tragedy shattered their happiness. Now, for the sake of an inheritance that will ensure their future, the children must be hidden away out of sight, as if they never existed. Kept on the top floor of their grandmother’s vast mansion, their loving mother assures them it will be just for a little while. But as brutal days swell into agonizing months and years, Cathy, Chris, and twins Cory and Carrie realize their survival is at the mercy of their cruel and superstitious grandmother…and this cramped and helpless world may be the only one they ever know.
I must admit I’ve not read horror for a long time (don’t have the stomach for it, Big Jessie that I am ) but remember I could not put this down. Shocking, gripping and utterly compelling in it’s time…
Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. GENRE: ROMANCE. Last but not least. Romance comes in many forms. Forget Mills and Boon and indulge yourself in this unusual love story, I loved it.
When 17 year old Isabella Swan moves to Forks, Washington to live with her father she expects that her new life will be as dull as the town.
But in spite of her awkward manner and low expectations, she finds that her new classmates are drawn to this pale, dark-haired new girl in town. But not, it seems, the Cullen family. These five adopted brothers and sisters obviously prefer their own company and will make no exception for Bella.
Bella is convinced that Edward Cullen in particular hates her, but she feels a strange attraction to him, although his hostility makes her feel almost physically ill. He seems determined to push her away – until, that is, he saves her life from an out of control car.
Bella will soon discover that there is a very good reason for Edward’s coldness. He, and his family, are vampires – and he knows how dangerous it is for others to get too close.
For those adventourous enought to try… Book 3 coming soon !