Books

Confetti at the Cornish Cafe – Phillipa Ashley

Just over a year ago I as introduced to Penwith and to Cal and Demi, in the first of this trilogy. I returned there at Christmas and I was more than thrilled to complete their story with the last of the trilogy Confetti at the Cornish Cafe.

First off I need to say that you really must go back and read books one and two before you start on this one. There is enough to reference back so you get a sense of the characters and the journey they have been on. You can read it without the history of the other two, but I feel that you will not get full enjoyment out of the book as you could. Satisfying the author does not simply regurgitate the previous two books so you get a sense of place, she simply refers concisely and succinctly.

With Kilhallon Resort expanding and find its feet as a unique destination for a break and some escapism. Demelza’s the on site cafe which is also open to locals who wish to walk past and experience the atmosphere, the views and of course the cakes is going to be the place to be seen if you are anyone that is anyone!

Demelza’s and Kilhallon is going to be a wedding venue, for a not so secret wedding. Of course they can cope, Cal and Demi can turn their hands to anything, as Demi tells the happy couple. It seems that to satisfy the bride and groom they are going to have to pull out all the stops to make sure it does not leave the wrong impression.

Of course you know it is not going to run smoothly and not everything is going to come up smelling of roses, in fact the opposite as it seems there are quite a few more people involved in this wedding as well as the bride and groom and they all want different outcomes.

Cal and Demi have some difficult times ahead, and whilst trying to manage all of this they are both trying to find a place and purpose in life and they are both not sure if it is together.

Surely organising a wedding can make them see something?

The third and final book of this trilogy is as good as the previous two and I am going to miss reading about how Kilhallon Resort is developing and of course Demi, Cal and the ensemble supporting cast who have made these books a thoroughly good read.

Thank you to the publisher and netgalley for the opportunity to read this book. 

Confetti at the Cornish Cafe is out now. 

You can catch my reviews of the first two novels here and here

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Books

Seventy Seven Clocks – Christopher Fowler

Whenever you are writing a series of books and in some ways when you embark on reading a series of books with recurring characters, you can see how the stories weaken and strengthen and how the characters evolve.

In this the third book of the Bryant and May series, you can see how the team at the Peculiar Crimes Unit are suddenly starting to work more together and how they are recognising the foibles of the two main detectives John May and especially Arthur Bryant.

The setting for this book is Christmas 1973 – the weather is atrocious, the winter is cold. It is dark not just due tot he time of year but also the strikes and the blackouts. The three-day week was just round the corner.

Of course this setting adds to the intrigue of the crimes which seem to be happening, members of an old aristocratic family are being killed off in some rather strange circumstances and with some rather peculiar methods.

No doubt Bryant and May are the ones to solve this case. But time is running out and it seems that even infiltrating a family tradition and belief may not stop any more murders.

I did find this book a bit difficult to get into and follow as it went along, although I obviously still enjoyed it. I was at the end rather confused and I think it was at times a bit far-fetched. However the interaction of Bryant and May and the humour that is scattered throughout the book, made the rather odd happenings seem quite normal!

This is the fourth book of this series I have read. I jumped and read the latest when offered, then was lucky enough to win the entire set so I am going back to the beginning. Like I have mentioned in previous posts on the matter, I am not sure how many books of the same series, you should review. I think I may well have reached the limit for this series. 

However, never say never and I think some of the books in the series will stand out more than others so they may well warrant a review. 

 

 

 

Books · Jottings

Series Reads and Reviews

I was pondering something the other day; my aim of reviewing every book I read.

I started doing it for every book I read as a sort of resolution back sometime in 2007. Fast forward to 2015 – that is pretty much 8 years I have been doing it and I was wondering if perhaps it is time to stop.

The reason being I read a review of a book where the reviewer had written “because how many books by the same author should you review”.

So my question to myself and all of you readers  – How many books by the same author should you review?

I was thinking in the region of ‘series’ reads where the reviewer I have quoted above was referring to the third in a series of books being written.

It got me onto Agatha Raisin, which is a series of books I am reading and enjoying and so far I have reviewed each one. I have recently completed book number 15 – BUT do I need to review it?

They are of an enjoyable formula. Agatha Raisin has a wonderful ability to get up everyone’s noses, despite her overwhelming desire to be loved and she invariably turns up where there is a dead or body two to be found. She becomes involved, the police become exasperated but she still gets to the truth before they do. Obviously as the series has gone on, there are some changes, but in the main the characters and the scenarios remain the same.

The other question in my head is – do I WANT to review it? The answer is the same as the first question.

I think you can probably gather that I have come to an answer – that I actually don’t need to review every one.

I can tell you I have read them, it is clear on my ‘Read’ page at the top of this blog, my ‘Challenges’ page (I have even taken off my standard challenges to review every book I read) as well as my monthly roundup posts. But I think for this particular series and maybe some others reviewing every book is becoming outworn. There may be a book I read in the future that I will want to share from a series of reads and then I will review it. I have that flexibility and choice and I feel much better for it.

I can spend some more time reviewing the books I really want to talk about, rather than thinking I need to plough through all of these reviews to get something down, because it was a challenge I set myself.

I am hoping that this makes sense – I am not abandoning reviewing books, I am setting free the concept of reviewing every book I read, especially when they feature in a long time series of books which differ in the vaguest of means.

I would be interested to hear your thoughts on this.