Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Reads of the month: December 2015

Hi Lovers,
Long time no review but I promise I have been reading!
So these are my new reads of the month.
These are two very different books.
Check them out below.

 by Ruth Rendell (3.5 stars)

Flitting between the modern day and the cusp of WW2. 
A buried tin containing the remnants of two severed hands, is the catalyst that brings a group of friends long since grown up back into each other lives.
Having grown up in a small Essex suburb together, it doesn't take long before old alliances and group hierarchy of what once was are firmly back in place. 
Swept up in a murder investigation, old truths and buried memories are brought to the surface.

Rendell took an interesting route and didn't focus on the actual murderer but the children now well into adulthood.
The plot centers on how an incident that they didn't know had actually happened greatly impacted their lives. 
As the group find each other again regret, lost chances, ageing and opportunities rear their head and some to detrimental effect.

Told from a much older generation struggling to find their place in the modern world was an excellent touch.
I found the use of older people making mistakes, feeling adrift and learning to live a life other than the one set out for them refreshing.
The role of being all knowing and wise is often afforded or foisted on older characters and this certainly isn't the case here. 
I am a pretty fast reader but this is a slow burn so it took some sticking to.
Without giving the plot away I did find fault with the stereotypical scenes and internalised
 misogynistic attributes in a few of the characters.
 This often irritates me in books however one characters end story did go some way in redeeming this.

This is actually the last book Rendell before her death earlier this year.
 So I think it will be very special to a lot of her keen followers.

Kitty Peck and the Child of Ill-Fortune by Kate Griffin (4 stars)

This engrossing historical mystery thriller set in Victorian London, follows fiery and fearless 17 year old Kitty Peck. 
The newly untested heiress of Paradise, the underworld criminal empire formerly run by her grandmother Lady Ginger.
No longer one of the many girls working within her grandmothers music hall.
 Kitty is now the boss and has to fight for the right to win and command all that lies within Paradise. 
Desperate to find and be reunited with her banished brother Joey.
 She embarks on a journey, where her life is placed in danger when she can not refuse a strangers plea for help and the chance to save a child.

Kitty and her friends lives are soon in danger as she unwittingly stumbles through her Grandmothers plans for her and those who have followed her back from Paris in pursuit of this child and bury a secret that could potential bring down the English empire.

This is actually the second book in this series and I didn't feel as though I had missed out on information at all. The first Kitty Peck and the Music Hall Murders is definitely on my list.

I found myself automatically reading kitty's parts in a proper hardcore cockney accent. Although there were cases of othering. 
 I felt a good percentage of the characters were well rounded and described well.
I really enjoyed this book and really felt as though I was immersed and living this adventure with Kitty. 
I found that the author struck the right balance of Kitty being a young woman and suddenly having to don this mantle of responsibility brilliantly.
This follows the traditional penny dreadful style and although a little sketchy in places is  very enjoyable.

Until next time.......
Stephanie aka Wednesdays Girl

Don't forget to come find me and    

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