Monthly Archives: November 2012

Book Review: Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities provides a window into the terror and madness of the French Revolution. It immerses the reader in the abject poverty, hopelessness and powerlessness of the French working classes. Men and women scrabble in the mud … Continue reading

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Book Review: Ann Patchett’s ‘Bel Canto’

Bel Canto is devastating and beautiful. It is exquisitely written, sucking you into the story from the very first page. It is a tale of hopelessness, humanity, empathy, and love. In a desperately poor and brutalized country, where citizens are … Continue reading

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Book Review: Michael Chabon’s ‘The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay’

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay is the epic tale of fifteen years in the lives of Joe and Sam, boy geniuses and would-be heroes. Their story is interlaced with quirky period detail. References to music, people, sporting events … Continue reading

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Book Review: R.D. Blackmoore’s Lorna Doone

Lorna Doone was written 140 years ago, and is set 340 years in the past. Its pace and style is very different to that of a modern novel. It is gentle and slow, and even a little ponderous in places. … Continue reading

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Book Review: Rian Malan’s ‘My Traitor’s Heart’

My Traitor’s Heart lays bare the anxiety and fear created by ‘otherness.’ Malan wrestles with the primitive instinct that categorises people into ‘us’ and ‘them.’ He finds himself, defined by his race, ethnicity and name, on the wrong side in … Continue reading

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Book Review: Alan Paton’s Cry the Beloved Country’

Cry the Beloved Country uses the simple story of the Reverend Stephen Kumalo, and tragic events that unfold around him, to illustrate the pain and suffering of South Africa’s racially divided society. Set in 1946, two years before apartheid became … Continue reading

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Book Review: Jasper Fforde’s ‘The Eyre Affair’

Jasper Fforde’s The Eyre Affair takes its reader to a parallel universe. Shadowy special operatives do battle against sinister supernatural forces, the all-powerful Goliath Corporation controls the levers of power, England and Russia have been waging a war in the … Continue reading

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