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Keith

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Exemplary

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 22-05-20

Powerful argument on how global trade was at the year 1000, particularly apt on China, South East Asia and East African interaction.

Viking connections to both North America and Eastern Europe are also excellent. Loved it. Great read of the subject too.

Beautiful

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-04-20

A beautiful conclusion to Thomas, John and Winona’s stories. If you are like me and found Days Without End to be among the finest novels of this or any other century, then you will be delighted to return to their story and follow them onwards.

This novel is quite different to Days, a quieter, internal story of Winona at young adulthood across a short period of time. Once again Barry is lyrical and poetic, the prose gorgeous. Winona is lovely and so is her story.

Powerful

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 31-03-20

This is an unusual one. The story is as grim as they come, in that the life Stoner leads is so dramatically unfortunate or at least it is so much less than it could have been. You could argue it is a failure, his life, but yet there is something in there of value. He certainly seems to be content.

I found it hard to get past the sadness of what happened with his daughter Grace. But even with that there is something powerful in this tale, something unique. I can understand why it is considered such a fine novel.

Writing is superb and the narration stellar.

Immense

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 25-02-20

What a beautiful novel. My first O’Connor work and certainly not my last. Stoker is such a great voice, sad, funny, poetic. He is surrounded by interesting lives, and such a hilarious character as Irving, one of the funniest I have read. McGovern delivers him so well it is almost a play.

2 people found this helpful

Malevolent

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 19-11-19

Quite the tale. Loved both of Hurley’s other books and this is as good or better. Powerful scene setting, slowly builds towards its denouement that is nuanced.

I understand this is the last of his folk horror trilogy, look forward to the urban setting of his next!

2 people found this helpful

What a novel

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-08-19

Stunning. Short, powerful, beautifully realized. Deserves all of the classic status. Peters’ reading of it nothing short of a masterclass.

Quiet Beauty

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 27-07-19

This is the most literary of the three Harper has written, a quiet, patiently told story of a family trauma, with only edges into the crime territory she had previously developed.

I would say her best to date. Once again the setting is nearly a character of its own and in Nathan she has developed a fully rounded, very interesting person, flaws included.

Social history at its finest

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 17-07-19

World class social history. Gives a voice to the women killer in the late Victorian serial slayings, but also gives an excellent sense of the difficulties women faced in that period and how easy it was to slip from stability into destitution.

How unfortunate they all where particularly, Polly, Annie and Kate. The period was tough on families and excessively tough on women when a family ran into trouble.

Look forward to the authors next book.

Brexit-lit

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 26-06-19

To be honest I was not sure it was possible to produce a novel that touched on Brexit, realized it’s own interesting story and yet dealt with the reasons why the Brexit vote happened and informed on the subject.

This is very much it. Excellent.

Glorious stuff

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-05-19

What can you say, this work is Carver-esque, the best compliment I can think of for a short story collection. Loved it. Will now read through the back catelogue.

1 person found this helpful