The Summer Kitchen is an enjoyable beach read that can give readers some hope that you can get through the worst imaginable event of your life. Its message is all the more poignant because it is based on the author’s actual experience.
The novel moves fast through conversations and acts, featuring intriguing characters, and often there is believable emotional weight as well as interesting political speculations. Carter’s use of language (in narrative and dialogue) is at a high-level with only of few points of stiffness.
Shreve has the uncanny ability to capture the delicacy of the human experience. Many of her novels focus on how a decision made in a split second can alter the course of people’s lives forever.
The Rasner Effect is a multifaceted psychological thriller peopled with convincing characters, packed with gritty, pithy discourse all set against a backdrop of trickery, maneuvering and danger.
Courage of Fear is a fascinating offering from a writer with an already individual voice. Read it to be in there on the ground floor, for it is a sure harbinger of much good work to follow.
Essentially, mind, Watkins gives us a grand feat of storytelling; and after a ride that takes in plenty of diverting incident, myriad twists and turns, and a denouement deftly concealed, we are left with an open-ended ending.
My Inflatable Friend is a super easy read that won’t tax even the laziest reader. It is pitched to a male audience in the main, and makes no apologies for that – there’s plenty of wish fulfilment, skirt chasing, and a definite male perspective. But the book isn’t dumb either.
Luke Ferless is a compelling narrator to begin with. He attempts a kind of honesty, addressing the reader as if we were his analyst, trying to uncover his reasons and motivations as he addresses his actions in the present in terms of his past. Luke’s rich vocabulary and detailed self-analysis, add to his charm, but despite it all, there seems to be an underlying self-doubt and unconscious misogyny that undermines his justification.
Some time ago, I read an interview with Norman Mailer where he made the claim that staring at Cubist paintings was good for his eyesight. I forget Mailer’s argument, but I’d make a similar claim regarding Patricia Highsmith: her novels can sooth your nerves. If you are entering a troubling period in your life, read Highsmith.
While The Man of My Dreams is set up as a coming-of-age novel, Hannah’s growth is primarily physical rather than emotional. Although it is a rather unsatisfying read in that sense, there are many aspects to this capable narrative which make it…