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Western Approaches by Graham Hurley

Reviews Posted on Sun, February 03, 2019 23:19:00

Continuing the Faraday series (Farady now long gone) with Jimmy Suttle as protagonist and having moved to Devon, this book does not disappoint. A great police procedural and some ‘human drama’ behind the story. The only negative thing to say is that there were a disappointing number of typos – it really could have done with better proof-reading.

Rogue Male by Geoffrey Household

Reviews Posted on Sun, February 03, 2019 23:11:52

This classic book, written in 1939, didn’t do much for me I’m sorry to say. Having read the book I turned to the Introduction in my 2014 edition (that would have served better as a postscript or similar) and learned a lot more about it. I still wasn’t overly impressed. I found various parts to be implausible and found the main character’s actions disappointing.

The Devil’s Garden by Edward Docx

Reviews Posted on Fri, December 07, 2018 22:36:21

A beautifully written story – very atmospheric – that was a joy to read in terms of the use of language. I felt the plot didn’t develop as fully as one would hope, especially towards the end. Some interesting ‘science’ about ants that also had unrealised potential.

Critique of Criminal Reason by Michael Gregorio

Reviews Posted on Thu, August 04, 2016 23:47:20

It was nice to read a historical fiction set in Prussia at the start of the 1800s with the possibility of Napoleonic invasion ever present. This debut novel by a husband and wife team (Michael Jacob and Daniela de Gregorio) is well-written, and has some evocative phrasing. However I didn’t feel this quite set the atmosphere, being perhaps a little too obvious at times. Also, the reason for the hero’s presence suffered from having a fairly weak foundation. The plot itself was satisfying enough but the book would have benefited from being 100 pages shorter, being somewhat laboured at times. The presence of Immanuel Kant was interesting – and helps explain the title – but the resulting central plot line was not strong enough.

Nonplussed! By Julian Havil

Reviews Posted on Tue, May 24, 2016 23:30:31

There are some really interesting problems which are worked through at a level most good A level students could follow. Some of them are well-known and have been looked at in the popular mathematics literature before. The derivations here are on the whole pretty good, but occasionally could have been written better.
The major failing of this book is in not providing intuition for why the results are what they are. The results are left to speak for themselves, but unfortunately they are often silent.

Lustrum by Robert Harris

Reviews Posted on Wed, May 04, 2016 23:11:38

This is the second in the Cicero trilogy. I didn’t find it quite as compelling as the first, Imperium, but Harris is a great story teller, and the book is still top drawer. I can’t wait to get hold of Dictator to finish this saga.

The Templar Legacy by Steve Berry

Reviews Posted on Sun, March 20, 2016 22:44:58

Clumsy is the best word to describe it ten chapters in. I hope it tightens up in terms of writing style.
Nope – a few chapters later and the decision is to not bother any more. The Dan Brown Legacy is safe if this is par for the course. This book is really poorly written, with a plot (as far as I got) as dull as I’ve read in long time. Give it a miss.

Rascal Money by Joseph R. Garber

Reviews Posted on Sun, March 20, 2016 22:43:30

An oldish book (written in 1989) about computer-related matters ought not to have dated well, but this one defies that expectation and turned out to be a really good read. I came across this book by chance and thought I’d give it a go and was not disappointed. The front blurb equating it to Catch 22 is rather hyperbolic and, frankly, silly.

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