Adult, Women's literature
Fig Tree, Penguin General UK - Hamish Hamilton, Viking, Penguin Life, Penguin Business
October 15, 2020
***The first novel from the award-winning, bestselling author of Everything I Know About Love*** 32-year-old Nina Dean is a successful food writer with a loyal online following, but a life that is falling apart. When she uses dating apps for the first time, she becomes a victim of ghosting, and by the most beguiling of men. Her beloved dad is vanishing in slow motion into dementia, and she's starting to think about ageing and the gendered double-standard of the biological clock. On top of this she has to deal with her mother's desire for a mid-life makeover and the fact that all her friends seem to be slipping away from her . . . Dolly Alderton's debut novel is funny, tender and painfully relatable, filled with whip-smart observations about relationships and the way we live today. ____________________________________________________ Praise for Dolly Alderton 'Hilarious and moving. Alderton is Nora Ephron for the millennial generation' Elizabeth Day 'I loved it so much, I wanted it to go on forever, Dolly Alderton is so gifted at making people care. A rare talent' Marian Keyes 'A wonderful writer, who will surely inspire a generation the way that Caitlin Moran did before her' Julie Burchill 'Deeply funny, sometimes shocking, and admirably open-hearted and optimistic . . . Mesmerising, brilliant ' Daily Telegraph 'Sensitive, astute and funny' Observer 'Alderton's wise words can resonate with women of all ages. She feels like a best friend and your older sister all rolled into one and her pages wrap around you like a warm hug' Evening Standard
Whilst they say this is her debut novel, I have read her previous book – which was semi(?) autobiographical. I really like her style of writing.
The concept of ‘ghosting’ – that is going silent after several dates is interesting and also nasty. When you’ve been meeting up and regularly talking to people and then they go completely silent on you, yu always wonder why they did it, was it your fault, what could have happened, how could they do this to you and so on. Whether it is a male date or a female friend – at least you thought they were a friend until.. it takes a lok of self awareness to realize it is not you but them that is at fault. You did not cause this – they did and it is their own emotions and lack of empathy that has done this.
I liked the idea of her cookery books, and as a student, could really have done with the one about cooking on a 2 burner hob – though that was my first introduction as it happens, to cooking for myself when I had a small room in a house. I learned very simple 1 pot meals – my favourite being hot dogs and rice and peas all cooked together with a good dollop of tomato sauce!
Taking on the difficulties of living with someone who has Alzheimer’s was good. It is a scourge that is affecting so many older men – more than women in our friends – I knew only one woman with it, but several men with either that or a form of dementia which was equivalent.
It can be very difficult to adjust to. The forgetfulness, the emotional highs and lows, the wandering and getting lost and sometimes the physical rage and hitting out from frustration. Even more difficult when the woman is many years younger than the man and was looking forward to more years of companionship than this illness gave them .
Daisy Cooper's Rules for Living
Death, women writers
April 2, 2020
Rule One: Anything Can Happen Daisy Cooper's life has been pretty uneventful - until the moment it suddenly ends. Unfortunately, her death is (literally) an accident: Daisy wasn't meant to die for another fifty years. One terrible, embarrassing clerical error is behind it - and Death himself is to blame. As Daisy battles against her new reality, she starts to learn that letting go isn't just a challenge faced by those left behind. And while she learns how to survive this impossible new reality, friendship, hope and even love begin to come alive in the most unexpected ways. For Daisy Cooper, death was the perfect time to start making sense of life... A fresh, funny and joyful story about our own humanity at the most testing times.
Rules for living and dying too. This was an unusual book about life after death and being Grim Reapers
I did have one issue with the storyline though. Death says he has been around for millennia. But, he also remembers our Middle Ages as when he was a child. And the question then arises, who was death before Death?
I liked the Rules but Daisy should never have gone back even as her part ghost. As she came to realise, it is just too hard for those left behind.
Overall, a well written book but please address the plot issues.
Dead Remaining Book 1
Fiction. Mystery, Suspense, Murder, Female Sleuths, Ghosts
Thomas & Mercer
July 23, 2019
An unlikely pair teams up to investigate a brutal murder in a haunting thriller that walks the line between reality and impossibility. When small-town police officers discover the grave of a young boy, they're quick to pin the crime on a convicted criminal who lives nearby. But when it comes to murder, Officer Susan Marlan never trusts a simple explanation, so she's just getting started. Meanwhile, college professor Eric Evans hallucinates a young boy in overalls: a symptom of his schizophrenia--or so he thinks. But when more bodies turn up, Eric has more visions, and they mirror details of the murder case. As the investigation continues, the police stick with their original conclusion, but Susan's instincts tell her something is off. The higher-ups keep stonewalling her, and the FBI's closing in. Desperate for answers, Susan goes rogue and turns to Eric for help. Together they take an unorthodox approach to the case as the evidence keeps getting stranger. With Eric's hallucinations intensifying and the body count rising, can the pair separate truth from illusion long enough to catch a monster?
Is this a ghost story or a murder mystery? It is up to the reader to decide
but it encompasses both. We have a ghost – a very persistent and quite forceful ghost; but we also have a murder and mystery. Who is the ghost? And what happened to him? He was murdered, but how and by who, and where?
Set in small town USA with a very small policeforce and not much money, we have female police officer with stickability and persistence and curiosity. All of which gets her into serious trouble as she tries to find out about the ghost boy.
As she delves into his case, the FBI find a graveyard and that is where
things begin to get strange for our heroine – and a professor (college
lecturer) with his own mental issues that having a ghost visit doesn’t help
I thought the suspense was well carried and it isn’t until the final stages
of the last chapter that it all comes to be resolved and the final pieces of
the puzzle fit together.
The issues with schizophrenia were well narrated and explored and it was
refreshing to find a character with these flaws who wasn’t a psychology expert as so many books seem to write them up as.
The story is a little short and we should really have found out more about the other children – the live ones as well as the dead ones. It would have helped fill out the story – perhaps someone could have list of lost children, ages, sexes; surely the FBI would be involved before the graves came to light? What about the FBI officers? Could we know about them?
This novel seems rather like a preliminary / prequel tale for a series that is longer and more involved. It is good – as far as it goes.
This is the first in a new series with our female detective and I look
forward to reading further books.