Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Book Review ~ Mrs. de Winter

Rating: 3/5

I love Susan Hill. She is a master of her craft, and she really took a risky step by writing a sequel to one of the greatest classics in the English language. However, it really was pulled off! 

The middle section of the book is a little slow. The first person becomes oppressive and it holds the story back from progressing. The character of Mrs de Winter becomes nauseating and it is hard to stick with it. BUT, the minute they buy the new house the story becomes engrossing and you cannot put it down. 

The novel picks up the de Winter's abroad moments before the death of his sister back to England. However, the presence of Rebecca is soon captured with a wreath at the graveside. Although Mrs. de Winter realises that escape from the past is not possible she cannot help but be desperate to stay. They embark on a trip around the UK before returning abroad. What they find is heaven and what it leads to is Hell. 

I knew from the tone that I couldn't expect a classical happy ending however, the ending is a complete surprise a brilliant twist set up and pulled off with great skill. It broke my heart! 

This is a must read if you like Daphne Du Maurier's original, but bear with it as the beginning is slow. 

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Book Review ~ A Place Called Winter

Rating : 4+/5

Patrick Gale is a real master of the craft of writing. He is truly amazing. The plot is absolutely flawless and heartbreaking. His descriptions and characters just take you there. You are alongside Harry the whole way and seeing his pain and his torment which is all made possible by Gale's writing. He is incredible, such a storyteller.

It is the story of Harry Gale who is hiding a secret about himself that when revealed could send him to jail and destroy his family. So he boards a boat and heads to Canada. Upon his journey he meets Troel's who will shape his future for better... and for worse. 

Troels is probably the nastiest character I have ever come across. He's constant appearances and what he does are so haunting you cannot help but be constantly on tender hooks worrying that he is going to appear and ruin everything that has just started to go right for Harry. 

The narrative is also brilliant. It is not flashbacks, but written from area to area in a sort of tracing back of the story. It keeps you turning the pages and is a brilliant way of keeping you guessing as to what exactly has happened to Harry Cane, as each part of the narrative reveals a little more of Harry's story until in the final section you realizes exactly what has happened to him.