Monday 1 August 2016

The 20 Books of Summer Challenge...

Cathy at Cathy 746 has a yearly challenge to read twenty books over the summer months starting on 1 June 2016 and running until 5 September 2016, and this year, I’ve decided to join her.

I'm always up for a bookish sort of challenge and as I need to clear some space on my book shelves I thought that this was a good challenge to get involved in. I'm not sure that I'll achieve the 20 books challenge but it's worth a try and in order to keep me motivated I'll be joining in with the rest on Twitter using the hashtag #20booksofsummer.

I've had rather a lot of review books on the go so my own personal reading chcoices have taken a back seat but here's a nothe rof my 20 Books of Summer reads...

The Doll's House (Helen Grace, #3)The Doll's House by M.J. Arlidge

A young woman wakes up locked in a cold dark cellar with no recollection of how she got there, and the body of a young woman is found buried in the sand of a remote beach. For DI Helen Grace and her team of detectives, the hunt is on to find the link between these two seemingly unrelated occurrences.
What then follows is a cleverly crafted crime novel which moves along at the speed of light but which never falters on the strength of the story or of the emotional commitment given to all of the characters.I love the short snappy chapters which allows the story to unfold scene by scene almost as if you are watching a TV drama.
As with any established crime series it i
s not just about the story in the here and now, but also about the subtle nuances of the investigative team and this time around Helen Grace is leading a relatively new crime team , who each have their own faults and foibles to contend with, which makes for interesting reading.

This is now the third book in the Helen Grace series, I know that there are at least two more already published...Liar Liar and Little Boy Blue, both of which are squirreled away on my book shelf !!

The Uninvited GuestsThe Uninvited Guests by Sadie Jones

It's Emma Torrington twentieth birthday and the family have gathered together in the faded grandeur of Sterne, which was once a rather grand country house but which is now experiencing difficult times financially and the family, once influential, are now down on their luck and are facing an uncertain future.

When a group of strangers arrive at Sterne, victims of a train accident seeking refuge, a definite sense of disquiet follows them and they very soon bring a decided chill to the birthday celebrations.

What then follows is the story of a house and its people, and the effect that this incongruent group of people have on each other and the roles they play in the sinister goings-on which twist and turn at every opportunity.

There is a definite air of malice in this story which has all the makings of a realistic gothic melodrama but occasionally I felt that it lacked certain oomph.

The Cleaner of ChartresThe Cleaner of Chartres by Salley Vickers

Agnès Morelis the eponymous cleaner of Chartres Cathedral, a quiet and enigmatic young woman who always seems to around when someone needs her. Her quietness suffuses the novel with gentle realism, as do the other characters flit into and out of Agnès’ story.
The book is very slow, almost languid and whilst nothing much seems to happen, the story does draw you in until you can’t help but be intrigued by the story which gradually unfolds. Parts of the story are in the here and now whilst other parts of the story reveal Agnès’ troubled past.
The story is typical of this author’s style of writing and reminded me so much of her other works, which I have also enjoyed.

Books read in my 20 Reads of Summer Challenge

  1. Origins of Love by Kishwar Desai
  2. The Emperor of Paris by  C S Richardson
  3. On Rue Tatin by Susan Loomis
  4. The Glovemaker by Stacia Brown
  5. Astray by Emma Donoghue
  6. The Doll's House by M J Arlidge
  7. The Uninvited Guests by Sadie Jones
  8. The Cleaner of Chartres by Salley Vickers

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