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Archive for the Book Review Category

Book Review: Tiny Sunbirds Far Away (Christie Watson)

THE BOOK CENTRES ON THE YOUNG NARRATOR, Blessing, in Nigeria, against a backdrop of political violence caused by the actions of oil companies in the Niger Delta. Blessing lives with her parents and brother, Ezikiel, in Lagos in a cocoon of luxury and comfort. However, soon her father’s abandonment of the family for another woman forces […]

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Book Review: Searoad – Chronicles of Klatsand (Ursula Le Guin)

KLATSAND, FORMERLY FISH CREEK, IN OREGON is a tiny settlement that grows over four generations to become an off-the-beaten-track and less than fashionable coastal resort town. It lies on the Pacific coast of Oregon and is only separated from that mighty body of water by the Searoad of the title. In one poem, ten short […]


Book Review: Alone in Berlin (Hans Fallada)

THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST UNFORGETTABLE BOOKS THAT I HAVE READ RECENTLY. Having read Nemirovsky’s Suite Francaise, which describes life in France after the German invasion in June 1940, I was struck by how Fallada shows the Gestapo in Berlin obsessively celebrating the French defeat. In this sense, Alone in Berlin is almost a […]


Book Review: Shelter (Frances Greenslade)

I SEEM TO HAVE A THING FOR BOOKS WITH A WOMAN’S HEART that use orphan-like characters in poor and crumbling habitats. If there are small practical points of magic or folklore interwoven, then we’ll be friends for life. Shelter, by Frances Greenslade, can now be added to this list. Shelter, set in British Colombia, Canada, […]


Book Review: Kafka on the Shore (Haruki Murakami)

THE JAPANESE NOVELIST, HARUKI MURAKAMI (1949 -) IS A LITERARY PHENOMENON. His novel, Norwegian Wood, a moving love story, sold four million copies in Japan. Both the Japanese original and English translation of his latest work, 1Q84 (a multi-lingual pun on Orwell), had queues snaking around bookshops in London and New York at midnight, drawing parallels […]