Book review: Money – a suicide note – Martin Amis – 1980

‘Money’ was written in the early 1980’s, and published in 1984. This was the highpoint of Thatcherism, greed is good, and ‘Money’ represents one of the high artistic points of that period. This isn’t saying much, because while everyone else in the Arts at the time was pointing out with different degrees of vehemence thatContinue reading “Book review: Money – a suicide note – Martin Amis – 1980”

Book review: The Nameless One – Book 1 of the Cade Saga – Chris Riddell and Paul Stewart – 2014

  I make absolutely no apology for reading and reviewing a children’s novel. Stewart and Riddell are probably the best in their field at the moment, and have created a memorable series of characters and worlds, not only in the marvellous Edge Chronicles, but elsewhere with creations such as Barnaby Grimes and Goth Girl. WhileContinue reading “Book review: The Nameless One – Book 1 of the Cade Saga – Chris Riddell and Paul Stewart – 2014”

Book review: The Sign of the Four – Conan Doyle – 1890

Or, if you prefer, ‘The Sign of Four’, which is I think the better known version of this novel’s title. There is quite a significant difference between the former – meaning a sign which collectively represents four people – and the latter, which means simply 4. But as the sign itself plays no real partContinue reading “Book review: The Sign of the Four – Conan Doyle – 1890”

Book review: The Shepherd’s Crown (Discworld 41), Terry Pratchett. 2015

Sadly, ‘The Shepherd’s Crown’ will be the last Discworld novel*. I had in my head drafted a response to the critics who claimed that the impact of Terry’s illness can be traced in the overall quality of this novel. The problem with that way of reading the novel is that once you start to lookContinue reading “Book review: The Shepherd’s Crown (Discworld 41), Terry Pratchett. 2015”

Book review: The Red Badge of Courage – Stephen Crane – 1889

I am not sure whether this is really a novel in the traditional sense of the word. It’s very short – about 125 pages – and there is very little plot or characterisation. The events of the novel, (a term I will retain for convenience’ sake), take place over a couple of days during theContinue reading “Book review: The Red Badge of Courage – Stephen Crane – 1889”

Book review: Three Men in a Boat (not to mention the dog) – Jerome K Jerome – 1889

Mildly amusing. Whimsical. Harmless  These are the words that come to mind when I reflect on the experience of reading this Victorian “classic”. For some reason, while many comic novels age appallingly, Three Men in a Boat seems bullet-proof against the passage of time. It is feather-light – there is no plot to speak of,Continue reading “Book review: Three Men in a Boat (not to mention the dog) – Jerome K Jerome – 1889”

Supplementary: A Passage to India – E.M.Forster (1924) (2)

This blog entry follows on from the previous review of A Passage to India, and focuses on the novel’s opening paragraph. This kind of detailed, deep dive analysis of text is a different approach to the reviews I have been writing over the last couple of weeks. “Except for the Marabar caves – and theyContinue reading “Supplementary: A Passage to India – E.M.Forster (1924) (2)”

Book review: A Passage to India – E M Forster – 1924

The narrative point of view in A Passage to India is elusive. At points, particularly when describing (supposedly) neutral scenes such as landscape, Forster uses a traditional, omniscient narrative voice. The landscape (or similar) is not however simply described – the description includes subtle (and sometimes not so subtle – see below) judgments and observations.Continue reading “Book review: A Passage to India – E M Forster – 1924”