The tattooist of Austwitch

The book is based on interviews with a Jew who was forced to tattoo other prisoners at Austwitch. The amount of people who survived these camps has now dwindled, so fantastic to try and preserve this history. Although nothing particular to fault with the book, I did not feel it reached full potential given the incredible story.

If the book was not based on reality it would seem unbelievable. I felt it lacked the feelings associated with the events. Perhaps it would have more effective written in first person rather than third person it is written in, to convey more emotion. The reason for it being written this way was that it was originally written as a screenplay then turned into a novel therefore, written factually if the events without the emotion.

Book review: Why Men don’t listen and women can’t read maps by Allan and Barbara Pease

An interesting book to read at the start of the relationship and indeed, it was one I found at his. Was going to say on his shelves but, that would not be accurate; as that would be far too organised. Being a biologist it has interesting facts about how humans have evolved. It is interesting from a sociological point of view and can prompt discussion about whether points raised are accurate. I have read aloud parts of the book that we have agreed are of interest.

To avoid saying yet again, that it is interesting; I will mention. It is humour for example, giving humorous scenarios that may happen between couples before going on to explain the science behind. Slightly patronising in places ‘the woman should let man drive without critiquing…’ Overall enjoyable read and the authors have other similar titles.

Change in author of millennium series: review of Girl with Spiders Web (no spoilers)

Due to Steig Larrsson’s untimely death before he knew of the success of his first three millennium books, the subsequent books in the series are being written by a different author. I have read the fourth book in the series by David Largercrantz; the girl in the spider’s web. After reading, I have not ruled out reading more of series however, it was not my favourite of the series. Rather than the author per se; it may have been that the topic was too technical for me and did not engage me; it was about artificial intelligence. That been said I also found level of finical detail in Girl with Dragon tattoo tedious, hence the issue may not be the author and have not ruled out reading more of the series.

Additionally I felt Girl with spider’s web, lacked some of the personal stories of Salander, Blomkvist and Berger such as them relating to each other.

November Summary


Read two Maureen Lee. Liked the first that I read best: The house by Princess Park. It told the story of Ruby’s birth just as World war 1 ended. It then picks up different part of her and her many descendants stories; from bringing up children during World War One onwards onto millennium new year eve. The other was Stepping Stones.

The fell walker by Michael Wood. Loved that was set in Keswick in the Lake District and referenced places I know. Some suspense was built as regards the murderer. I enjoyed the narrative of the journalist Ben, but was not keen by this being interrupted by a different narrative strand. I did not fully buy the logic to the conclusion of the murder mystery. Certain plot devices near the end which were meant to be, dramatic seemed far fetched, yet it was too inevitable how the situation would conclude.


Bohemian Rhapsody: learnt about the band Queen which, was just before my time and was also entertained, so can not ask for much more.

Victober: Alice in Wonderland

Have seen  short performances of Alice a couple of times and about 9 years ago the film though can not remember much about it.. Of course it permeates into general conscious with people talking about Eat me, drink me and mad hatters tea parties. I once went on jeep safari and I did not know t the time, that thew quote the girl opposite me had on her leg was from Alice “Your completely bonkers, but all the best people are’. Therefore, I for a few months I thought I should immerse myself in it more, but thought the book may be too wordy for me. I instead decided to try audio book.

When I did some research in advance of Victober, just after completing the audio book; I found Alice was written in Victorian times.
I’m pleased I did go for the audio book, I think I may have found the book too slow. What I got from the book, was it was basically Alice continually shrinking and growing. The audio book I got was 2 hours long. I chose Sheridian Smith as narrator, to me it sounded like she was using her ‘phone voice’ and I did not engage with the narration as much as I thought I would.
One factor, I felt naive about, in terms of Alice in Wonderland was how Tweedle Di and and Tweedle Dum fitted in. Audibles have e-mailed and apparently the book I listened to is just the first in the Alice series. Having googled I have found Tweedle di and Dum do not come in until later in the series in Through the Looking-Glass and what Alice Found There
 Needless to say, I ‘m not in a rush to read or listen to more Alice, but I would watch other performances to Alice which can bring it to life.

Eleanor Oliphabt is completely fine. How can she answer cryptic crosswords but have never heard of kitten heels? CONTAINS SPOILERS

I had heard good things about this book by Gail Honeyman. It was a quick easy read. But the major flaw for me, was how could she be so naive of the world but, answer cryptic crosswords? This meant I did not find her believable or engage with her. I was not surprised when it turned out, her conversations with her Mother were not real. Was that meant to be a big twist? There is definitely books with unreliable narrators which, have created more suspense and been more shocking.

For me, it seemed unbelievable she had not previously engaged with more people. She was not that adverse to other people. I would have more envisioned that she had, latched on to different people over and over again.

Meeting Declan, letting him move in then staying with him despite, him beating her up, that seemed more in keeping with her character, the need to be loved. But why, not earlier whilst at university had she engaged with people? The book mentions she studied hard, but that does not explain not making friends. If nothing else do not all university courses involve some group projects?

Then at work, it does not seem she had been excluded. She was invited to someone’s wedding reception. She took part in a charity raffle, so engaged with someone to buy tickets and this suggests she would have sponsored people, contributed to leaving presents, gone to Friday night drinks… When she won the tickets, she went with someone from the office instead of by herself so people in the office was prepared to engage with her.

In the author’s Q and A and the back of the book, she describes the book being inspired about articles about loneliness. She mentions about someone saying that from when between leaving work on a Friday night and returning Monday morning, they would not talk to anyone; I can relate to that. Sometimes I have gone home on aFriday night, not expecting to talk to anyone until Monday morning. What was not believable was the book saying, that it was every week. I would have believed it more, if said often went home Friday then did not talk to anyone until Monday. This was sometimes broken up by going out after work for drinks to mark someone leaving, but at the end of the night everyone drifted home to someone, to their normal weekend with regular friends but she only had work people and that was only for during day Monday to Friday possibly at most extended into Friday night. There needed to be more explanation of why she had not engaged more with people from work. It sounded like a sociable place, that had Christmas dos, collections etc… Perhapas it could have been a smaller company and everyone else older with children so could not go out much? Then perhaps expanded and that was the catalyst for Eleanor interacting more?

What was Raymond’s motives for helping Eleanor? Was Raymond just brought up, to be caring by his caring Mother. Or did he want to be romantically involved with her? I thought, that is where the book was going, but it did not end that way. I kind of liked that the book did not end with them getting together and living happily ever after; it acknowledged that Eleanor’s problems would take time to be worked through. I would have liked ending more if, Eleanor mistakenly interpreted Raymond saying he was there for her, as him wanting to be with her. Then Raymond revealing he was gay but, wanted to help her.

I don’t hate the book as much as it may sound like I do. I guess it has made me think. Would I have liked it more, if not had such high expectations?

www Wednesday reading

What I have just read:

From Here to Maternity by Sinead Moriety

What I’m currently reading

Elenor Oliphant is completely fine. High exceptions, first reading session thought was going to be disappointing and it was going to be a little dull. But now read bit more different scenarios starting to emerge making it more complex.

What I want to read

The next in the millennium trilogy (Girl with dragon tattoo etc…) by Steig Larsson; have been saving them to read on holiday.  Just learnt, after his death someone else has continued series so will probably want to read those too.