What to do when winter comes: The Sunlight Pilgrims, a review.

Since moving to Edinburgh last year I’ve been wanting to read more Scottish books. This has been surprisingly difficult, since my general reading list has also been growing at a similar pace. But I’d been hearing so many good things about The Sunlight Pilgrims I felt I had to make time for it.  Continue reading

Drifting Sand and Lurking Terror: The Ice Lands, a review.

I have quite mixed opinions about The Ice Lands (by Steinar Bragi, Macmillan, 2016), which is relatively rare for me: I’m normally quite good at picking books that I know I’ll like. This one I’d seen in the shop in hardback and thought it sounded interesting. I read a preview online and made a mental note to pick it up at some point. A couple weeks ago I found a proof copy in the staff room and just like that, it ended up at the top of my list, for better or for worse. A lot of my criticism of this book stems from the content and structure of the ending, so while I’ll try not to go into specifics, there may be a few spoilers near the end.
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The Architecture of Sex and Power: The Girl Before, a Review.

The Girl Before is the latest, it seems, in a cascade of similarly titled thrillers that have come out over the last few years. So I picked it up with trepidation, and didn’t expect very much. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised to find the book engaging and complex, with multilayered characters and an unpredictable plot. I’ve tried to keep this review free of spoilers.  Continue reading

The Body Fights Itself: The Vegetarian, a Review.

This book has been on the edge of my attention for a while now, I’d seen it on the shelves at work and on twitter and in various shortlists, and had the opportunity in August to listen to Han Kang do a live reading with The Bookshop Band at the Edinburgh Book Festival. This last event piqued my interest, but it wasn’t until this month that I actually had the time and wherewithal to actually tackle a book which-though quite short-I knew was going to be an intellectual commitment.  Continue reading

Nina Is Not Ok: A Review.

This Fringe season I had the opportunity to attend Shappi Khorsandi’s live comedy show. So I thought I’d read her new novel, Nina Is Not Ok before the show, which was the following Thursday. I needn’t have worried about finishing in time: this book is one of those compulsively readable novels that pulls you in and doesn’t spit you out again until you’re finished with it. Continue reading