The Rock by Robert Daws

The Rock by Robert Daws

When this book came to my notice, I liked the idea of a mystery set in Gibraltar. I’d visited Gibraltar, briefly c1993, so I had a sense of its atmosphere. It wasn’t my intention to read it straight away. I added “The Rock” to my TBR list, and then the next day I was drawn back to it by serendipity. After reading the first 10% I got a feeling it was going to be a good read; I wasn’t disappointed. The pace was good for me and my reading mood. There was a minimum of grisly description which made the story a mystery, more than a thriller. With all the things happening in the world today, #GrenfellTower, #FinsburyPark #Manchester #LindtCafe etc etc, I don’t need a thriller. …

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The Book That Made Me – edited by Judith Ridge

The Book That Made Me – edited by Judith Ridge

In 2017 at my favourite Sydney literary event, the Sydney Writers’ Festival, I was browsing Gleebooks’ pop-up bookshop, which is always a source of unique treasures, when I discovered The Book That Made Me, edited by Judith Ridge. The book is a collection of mini-bibliomemoirs ((Note from the Artuccino Team – the meaning of bibliomemoir: a memoir about the books one has read.)). They are personal reflections on books that had a profound impact on the writing life of some well known Australian and New Zealand authors. Each story led me down new pathways, introducing authors and books unfamiliar to me.…

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An Unlamented Death by William Savage

An Unlamented Death by William Savage

Great storytelling! I love a good story with a visual impact. I don’t need car chases and graphic-anything, I just want to sit spellbound as the story unfolds; this story keeps you turning the page, gently. I’m looking forward to reading the next in the series. I loved its pace, its characters, its delivery of observations and revelations, with a little wisdom sprinkled here and there. The period it covers, the 1700s through to the 1800s in Britain. This period is one that holds my interest because of the new “enlightened” view emerging from the blight of ignorance and suppression. Set in Britain’s Norfolk, the story has an atmosphere that enabled me to feel placed there, feel the weather, smell the smells, enjoy the warmth of the hearth, which is so important when absorbing the story.…

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The Merry Millionaire by J.A. Wells

The Merry Millionaire by J.A. Wells

Our world has changed in many ways, our European based cultures have become more reasonable and all inclusive of religious philosophies, racial and cultural differences and sexual orientation. Of course pockets of resistance still exist and resound through the voices and actions of the un-enlightened. That said, I have a certain conservative view of the world, so it was with hesitation that I decided to read this novel from this genre, which follows the journey of a “gay” character. The Captain is a very rich English gentleman, whose lifestyle could be looked upon today with a critical eye, in light of our society’s courageous attempt to protect the young.…

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Case Histories by Kate Atkinson

Case Histories by Kate Atkinson

Amazingly good. I didn’t want to put it down and I didn’t, until I finished the book, 48 hours after beginning, Phew! I’m not a fast reader but I found this a real page turner. It isn’t a thriller, but it’s a fantastic mystery. I read it and listened to it. The narrator of the audiobook was excellent. It won’t be long before I read the next one in the series. I just have to catch my breath first.…

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Moby Dick by Herman Melville

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

I’m reading Moby Dick (the Collector’s Library Edition) as part of a personal challenge to read several books that are considered “classics”. I’ve been delighted and surprised at the contents of the book. I’m only 20% in. At first I tried listening to the audiobook version but the text was too dense for me to grasp the detail, so I bought a beautiful printed version and settled down to read at least one chapter a day. Herman Melville’s words reflect a philosophy of tolerance of social differences that rings true for today. So wise! I find myself wanting to lift text from it and paste it to Facebook and say, hey everyone, read this, this was written in 1851, and they were having the same social problems related to cultural differences we have today.…

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