I read seven books in April.
Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty
Recently I heard an interview with a novelist who specialises in ‘issue’ books. I read about six of them before giving her up a few years ago. She was asked which came first (when she was thinking of her next book) the character or the issue, and she replied, as if it was a no-brainer, oh, the issue. I realised why I’d stopped reading her books – because although I can remember the issues her main characters had I can’t remember anything else about them.
Liane Moriarty’s characters all have lots of issues – as do we all, that’s life, but they are never flagged up as such. Triplets Lyn, Cat and Gemma are the protagonists in Three Wishes – LM is terrific on this sibling relationship. Loved it – not quite as much as The Last Anniversary reviewed here, but lots. I’ve bought The Hypnotist’s Love Story and, her latest, Truly, Madly, Guilty, but am putting off reading them because then I’ll have finished all the books she’s written to date and I don’t know how long the wait will be for the next one …
And while I’m having a wee rant about ‘issues’ I was cross and upset to read that a new version of Anne of Green Gables is being filmed for Netflix. Called Anne with an E it tells the ‘real story’ of ‘a more troubled’ Anne and will be concerned with ‘trauma, bullying and being an outsider’ in the ‘hard, gritty, scrappy’ life she apparently would have had in Prince Edward Island in the late 1800s.
Leaving aside the fact that Anne is a fictional character … I think we can read between the lines that her life, certainly before she came to Green Gables, was what we would now call dysfunctional, but the whole point of her delightful character is that despite her bad start in life she’s never self-pitying, never thinks of herself as a victim. Quite the opposite in fact. Grrr. I won’t be watching.
N is for Noose
V is for Vengeance
W is for Wasted by Sue Grafton
After reading U is for Undertow last month I went on three further crime sprees with private investigator Kinsey Milhone. The next one is available, called merely X, and then only two more to come in this very enjoyable series.
Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney
Read on Kindle. Psychological suspense novels promising a twist are the in-thing just now. I didn’t see the twist coming that was revealed about two-thirds of the way through this one but it made sense when I put my Kindle down for a few minutes and thought about it – very clever. The twist on the very last page though – perhaps someone could explain it to me?
In Her Wake by Amanda Jennings
Read on Kindle. Another psychological one. I wasn’t sure about the slightly magical (or were they?) elements in this one but otherwise I thought it was a great page-turner (if you can say that about an e-book) and I liked the Cornish setting.
The Whale Boat House by Mark Mills
This is the first book I’ve read by this author but it won’t be the last. It’s set in Long Island just after the Second World War and begins with the dead body of a beautiful young socialite being caught in a fisherman’s net. Long Island is just beginning to be the weekend/holiday destination for rich New Yorkers who build large houses, a contrast to the homes of the permanent residents. Some Amazon reviewers thought the author shoehorned too much of his research on the lives and work of the fishermen into the story but I liked all the detail and I think it’s good to learn something while being entertained.