This month I have read 5 books, bringing my total for the year up to 46. I felt like this was a slow reading month for me, but the last two books I read were fairly quick reads so that made up for it. Here are mini reviews of each:
V for Vendetta by Alan Moore & David Lloyd
I reviewed V for Vendetta as part of my ‘I Read the F*@#ing Books’ series here. It’s a really great book, not to be that person but it is better than the movie. I loved the way the female character held more strings than first thought and how their stories developed. It’s a classic that frequently appears on must-read graphic novel lists and justifiably so.
What She Left by T.R. Richmond
A young woman drowns on a night out but people who knew her have a hard time accepting the verdict of accidental death. An anthropology lecturer at her old uni takes a special interest in the case and starts to piece together her last moments using the traces she has left behind – diaries, text messages, emails etc.
The story is formed by all of these documents but also letters written by the professor which puts him in the place of the key narrator. It’s effective in creating an unreliable narrator with doubt placed in the readers mind over every character, but for me there was something disappointing about it. I didn’t click with any of the characters, even the deceased, so overall it was a bit ‘meh’ for me.
The Good Girl by Fiona Neill
It’s funny that the tagline for this says ‘one mistake’ – ‘a whole tonne of mistakes’ would be more accurate. The Good Girl follows the story of the Fields when they move from London to rural Norfolk. For Luke, Romy and Ben, it’s all a bit sudden and their parents don’t seem to be being honest about what prompted the move. Harry and Ailsa worry about the impact their decision has had but are convinced they have done the right thing, until Romy, their ‘good girl’ who has never given them a moments worry, suddenly blows apart the whole family.
I really liked this one. It has a lot of plot turns (not quite twists) and there is so much going on with this family than first thought. I thought that the character of Romy was particularly well developed and her motivations seemed clear. The topic is very current – a sex tape going viral, and it’s a well paced, modern tale.
The Curvy Girls Club by Michele Gorman
This one is quite a different read for me! I also read it on my phone as I found myslef without a book one day – also a very different experience though not terrible. The Curvy Girls Club follows Katie and three of her friends from Slimming Zone. After getting thoroughly fed up with weekly weigh-ins and calorie guilt, they decide to skip the meetings and instead set up a social club for curvy girls (and guys) like them.
Sounds fluffy (and it is), but it also has moments that are quite dark. Told in first person by Katie, it reveals what it is like for larger people and what they face from subtle put downs to outright discrimination and constant judgement. It also shows that someone’s harshest critic can be themselves with some of the Curvy Girls Club putting their lives at risk in the pursuit of weightloss.
The Girl in 6E by A.R. Torre
Deanna Madden is Jessica Reilly, a sex cam operator and shut in. But Deanna is not agoraphobic, she has locked herself in her apartment for the past 3 years as she does not trust herself not to go on a murderous rampage. One day, however, her hand is forced when she hears of the kidnapping of a child that is uncomfortably close to one of the fantasies of a disturbing client. She has to leave the apartment, has to save the little girl, just has to not murder anyone else…
This is an erotic thriller as a lot of the book focuses on Deanna’s sex work. I felt like this was overdone a bit, you were waiting a long time for the real plot (the kidnapping) to kick in, and when it finally did it was quite rushed through. Aside from that, I did like this book. Deanna is an interesting character and I liked the gradual reveal of how she has ended up like she has. I also really loved that she was not the kickass murderess, super-villain with ninja skills that she had kinda believed herself to be. This is actually the first of a three book series, but while I enjoyed it, I’m not sure I’ll be rushing out to pick up the other two.
So that was my November reads. I really want to read some Christmassy books this month that aren’t all romance – do you have any suggestions? Please let me know in the comments.