The post September 2023 Book Reviews is part of the #What’sonyourBookshelfchallenge
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How has your reading gone this month? I feel like it was only yesterday that I was reviewing my August reads. Consequently, I don’t seem to have as many books to review this month. I think this is probably because I am back into the usual routines of life and don’t have the same amount of time to read that I did when I was away travelling. Anyhow, you can find my slim September 2023 Book reviews below.
In other book news:
I went to my first Gold Coast Writers meeting and listened to author Michelle Upton, who has just released her latest book ‘Terms of Inheritance’.
She is a fellow ‘pom’ now living in Australia, originally from Birmingham. She is a great talker and deep dived into her whole writing process. I loved how she comes up with much of her story development when she is out on a run. The best ideas always come when you are away from your desk/computer.
The blurb for her new book: Multi-millionaire Jacki Turner decides to set each of her daughters a challenge to complete before they can be eligible to inherit her vast fortune. I have bought a copy of the book and will hopefully review it in my next book review post.
The second half of the talk was from Cynthia Terelst who is a romance author. She talked about the importance of writing the first chapter so that you catch your reader’s attention. I think as reader’s we can all relate to the fact that if we don’t get drawn into a story within at least the first 3 or 4 chapters we may not stick with the book (I’m certainly learning that I don’t have to finish a book if it doesn’t interest me!).
Then they had a raffle and I won!
I received a copy of Jen Swenson’s latest book ‘Goldie the Unchicken’. It’s a great children’s illustrated book, perfect as a kids Christmas gift. It’s in the style of the Ugly Duckling story but better! I especially liked that it has hidden surprises for kids to search for throughout the book.
Thanks to the following bloggers for allowing me to take part in the #Whatsonyourbookshelf challenge.
Please follow the link here to check out the other book reviews in this challenge. I’m sure you are going to discover lots of interesting books to add to your book wish list.
Redemption (Eva “Lightning Dance” Duran Book 1) – Deborah J. Ledford (fiction)
I’m not sure how I feel about this book.
It’s set on a Native American reservation, so I really enjoyed the insights into the difficulties that the people who live their experience and it provides a new setting for the genre of crime writing.
The plot centers around four native women who go missing. They are all important and well recognised in their community for their talents of basket weaving, drum making, jewellery making and White Dove, who is an outstanding hoop dancer, is even revered outside the reservation. Her best friend, Eva Duran is a cop and sets about trying to find out what has happened to her fellow native women. Eva is also trying to look after Kai, White Dove’s teenage son.
Added to the mix is the fact that all four women had sunk into drug addiction so the police are generally not concerned about looking for the women.
When each woman starts turning up dead, Eva is in a race against time to find her friend before she suffers the same fate.
The issue I have with this book is that the reader knows from the start where the women are and who has them, so there is no guessing games for the reader. Plus, I didn’t feel the author really explained the killer’s motives fully.
I did enjoy the book as it explored a different culture and place. The characters were all engaging and well developed but I just felt that I would have enjoyed more mystery to the plot.
That being said, I will look out for the follow up books and give them a go, as it has been really interesting learning about Native American culture. Ledford also has another police procedural series which I might check out as well. Ledford is part Eastern Band Cherokee so I feel I am getting an authentic insight into Native American culture through her stories. Overall a refreshing change to the usual crime thriller set up.
The Land Girls – Victoria Purman (fiction)
The Lottery – Shirley Jackson (short story fiction)
This story was recommended in a newsletter and I just ended up following the link. You can read it here
Written in 1948 it’s a story about a mysterious annual lottery that takes place in a village/country but the reader doesn’t really know where.
It’s rather a dark short story but a good read over a coffee break.
I checked out this book as part of my word of the year “CREATE“
The Artist’s Way – A Spiritual Path to higher creativity – Julia Cameron (non-fiction)
I have heard so many creatives rave about this book, so I thought I should really check it out.
Many of these creatives swear that by using Cameron’s techniques such as ‘artist’s dates’ and ‘morning pages’, they have released their creativity and productivity. They rave about Cameron’s descriptions of the artist’s journey and how anyone can find their creative side.
Sadly, i just couldn’t get into this book at all. Cameron has a very wordy and literary style, and unlike Elizabeth Gilbert’s book Big Magic where I couldn’t wait to continue reading, I found myself dreading reading the next page of this book.
So, in my new found liberation of not reading a book to the end just because I think I should, I didn’t!
Anyone else read this one? Did you enjoy it? Is it just me?