Wednesday, 20 August 2014

killer salesman

Book review of the short story ‘Killer Salesman’ By R. A. Johns An office supplies sales man, Mr Needham, travels the breadth of England trying to reach his monthly target pretty unsuccessfully. He is an a vague man, married just three years, working a routing route and to begin with you suspect nothing out of the ordinary about him. R. A. Johns, describes the English landscape, the empty fields and lonely farm houses in her short story. The loneliness of this landscape ties into the main character own loneliness. Always being on the road and suspecting that while he is away his wife has other lovers. He toys with the idea of suicide, which gives you a glimpses into his state of mind. He is undoubtedly stressed, but appears however to like the challenge of stress, and the trill of the chase as R. A. Jones neatly puts it. The story starts to get interesting and take a different path, when, Mr Needham stays in a grubby hotel and becomes convinced at first that there is someone in his room and watching him. He also becomes fixated by a painting in his room, that he is convinced is changing before his eyes. The parallels seam to close to be coincidence. He is a salesman, the painting has a sales man in it, and they dress the same, suit and bowler hat. Mr Needham is convinced that the painting even changes to show the last place he visited that day, in which he made an unsuccessful sales pitch. Is he paranoid, tied or even just ill? He does to begin with suspect that he could be coming down with something. He is a bit obsessed with germs, remarking how many germs there are likely to be on a hotel key card. So there for could also be a bit of a hypochondriac. When the painting changes again R. A. Johns describes, the hotel setting. You get a sense of fear and shock as the salesman looks on in horror at his unfolding day play out in the image before him. He fears he is losing his mind, or is he dreaming? You will have to read the story to find out! Brilliant short story full of descriptive words and very interesting. Would highly recommend 5 stars.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Book review: Rooted by Amy Good Therianthropy at its best.

This is an easy book for me to recommend. Why? It’s brilliant. Easy to read, action packed, wonderfully written characters, a touch of romance, and most importantly werewolves! Right from the very start the story grips you, as a brutal murder of a mother takes place in a small sleepy town in America where nothing out of the ordinary normally ever happens. The significance and the effects of this death are unravelled throughout the story as the plot thickens. The son of the dead woman, Grayson, who is a strongly written and is a beautiful tortured soul, battles with who he is and although strong, has a fragility that is heart-warming. My favourite character from Rooted has to be Chloe, and we view the story from her perspective. Chloe, a recent orphan herself, is a resilient teenager, and even though she has super powers, she is a very warm human character, worrying about her friendships and her place in the world. At the start of the story, her best friend of two years is Lillian, a cheerleader and natural beauty. Chloe starts the story off very much walking in her shadow and in complete admiration of her friend. But the introduction of a strange and somewhat out-of-place new character called Margot, who dresses like she is from the 1950s, shifts the dynamics of their friendship, with disastrous results. Thankfully, Chloe gets the support of a new friend Rebecca, and you feel Chloe’s relief in having a good friend. Rebecca is as human as you can get and her character grounds the story. Rebecca’s father, who gives respite and food to Chloe, adds a caring adult to the plot, which balances it nicely. I liked Chloe’s interaction with nature; she was soulful and kind. Never had I ever wanted to be a character in a book more than I did with Chloe. There is so much that I loved about this book, there are several plots and things happing at once, but it all comes together at the end; and like a light being switched on, you see the whole story. Amy beautifully writes every word with care. I love how she describes every detail from the food they’re eating, the clothes they’re wearing, even the coldness and dampness of the weather. I am a slow reader normally. But was hooked from the start. I forgot everything, from the washing up and even my writing. I just had to read the next chapter and the next until it was finished; it was like a drug. I cannot believe that this was Amy’s first book; here is a great writer, I am proud to write this review, and I look forward to reading anything else she writes. So if you have not read Amy’s book, go and read her book, and it’s free to download here Amazing art work on the cover also by Danielle Tunstall (

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Book review of Super Fred by Tony Gilbert (Author), Pippa Cornell (Illustrator)

Enchanting wonderfully crafted tale. Five stars. Being a child that grew up believing that monsters lived under by bed, I was instant drawn to this book which is beautifully and colourful illustrated by Pippa. Tony has a genius for writing for small children to captivate not only them but the parents for are reading the story which flows for page to page delightfully carried by the wonderful illustrations. A rhythmic story about an unexpected friendship between Fred a monster and a little boy named Dale. Their story leads them to monster land, Fred hides Dale in his fur. They meet Fred’s friend Bob who is the scariest monster. I think this book will encourage children to want to read, I like that there is counting in it also. I loved all the descriptions of the monsters, ‘googly eyes and flappy ears’ with are very engaging for children. I can’t wait to have grandchildren so I can read it out aloud to them. Kindle version £2.42