The Sellout by Paul Beatty

This is a fire-cracker of a book. The absolutely savage satire starts right from page 1 and it continues to rampage throughout the novel … and it is briliant. I honestly don’t think I’ve ever read such a brutal critique of, well, anything! The only thing I can think of that comes remotely close is Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal which is almost a match for … Continue reading  The Sellout by Paul Beatty

Falling Man by Don Delillo

I’d been interested to read something by Don Delillo for a while but after reading Falling Man, I’m not sure I’d read anything else. I was intrigued to read a novel about 9/11 that faced it head on, rather than skirting the issue like I felt that ‘Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close’ did, but overall, I found this novel to be just as empty as … Continue reading Falling Man by Don Delillo

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

I’ll start off by saying that it has been quite a while since I posted anything and this is partly because I haven’t read anything in a while! Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that I haven’t finished anything in a while. Before Christmas, I started reading A Brief History of Seven Killings by Marlon James but I have just not been … Continue reading The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

What if you had the chance to live your life again and again, until you finally got it right? This is the question asked by this exquisite novel. Set in the early twentieth century, this is a story about family ties, love, death and fate.  Atkinson shows how a story can have an infinite number possible endings as she narrates the life of Ursula Todd over and … Continue reading Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

Where My Heart Used to Beat by Sebastian Faulks

I loved Faulks’ ‘Birdsong’, which I read years ago, and I was expecting something with the same intensity and emotion from this one. The blurb certainly suggested that the same themes were there and it promised to compel me, but instead I was left feeling a little disappointed by his latest novel. I found the main character, Robert Hendricks, quite hard to understand. The book narrates … Continue reading Where My Heart Used to Beat by Sebastian Faulks

The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

I liked this book but I almost didn’t make it to the end. It is about Dorrigo Evans, a Tasmanian doctor who survives his experience as a prisoner of war in a Japanese camp during the second world war. The novel recounts the struggle and the horror of the camps and how the prisoners were forced to work building the Burmese railway. The human suffering described in this … Continue reading The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

This book was not what I expected. For a start, I thought that Carson was a man (she is not) and the title had me thinking of something Gatsby-esque. But this was not a love story. Or perhaps it is, but certainly not a conventional one. It is about John Singer, a deaf mute who becomes a confidant for several members of the community in … Continue reading The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers