I found my Hand Written Reviews from 2012!!

Published February 22, 2016 by Harri

The HelpThe Help by Kathryn Stockett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book, although the racism and bigotry of the time was uncomfortable reading. I couldn’t help but feel that it had a “white woman saviour” thing going on.
The fact that Skeeter actually listened to the women and let them tell their stories in their own words, instead of passing them off as hers (like many white women do) was refreshing.
Two Slice Hilly will always be something that makes me chuckle though.

The handwritten review I wrote when I read this:

“This book describes from the Character’s view points what it’s like to be a black maid. The Help is based in America as racism was beginning to be challenged in the 40’s/50’s.

Without any frills, you are thrust into the lives of the maids and the author of their revolutionary book.

I truly adore this book even though it made me cry (a couple of times).

It is beautifully and truthfully written, even if heartbreaking.

My first E-Book read.

 

The Shining (The Shining, #1)The Shining by Stephen King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

[Originally reviewed back in 2012, written by hand]

My favourite horror/suspense/thriller writer proves this accolade with this book. (Which I have just found out will have a published sequel by the end of this year!)

As I read this book, I became remotely grateful that I have never watched the film all the way through. My imagination pained a different image to Jack Torrence, although from what I have seen, Jack Nicholson is amazing in the role.

The book keeps you on edge. I remember being grateful that I wasn’t reading this at home in the dim lighting but at work in a cab office, alone at 1am.It made me jumpy about my surroundings. It’s a true suspense novel at it’s best. I love the way King writes the characters. I adored reading Jack’s mental demise. The way the hotel literally came to life. The fight for survival from Doc.

I don’t think I will be able to watch the film and enjoy it. The way they have changed the plot seems almost diabolical.

This for the creep factor will/ has become one of my favourite books.

The Woman in BlackThe Woman in Black by Susan Hill
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

A thoroughly disappointing and predictable read.

I bought this because it has recently been made into a film. I haven’t seen the film but I can’t wait to.

The book read like a script. I instinctively knew what was going to happen. The suspense wasn’t there even though the graveyard was painted for a textbook horror/scare-fest.

The connections between the characters are see-through at best and the ending, just like the story, disappointing.

I truly hope the film is better than the book.

A first for these words to have ever uttered from my lips. Should have waited and bought this while it was on offer, or even not read it at all and just watched the film.

A waste of my money.

A Tiny Bit MarvellousA Tiny Bit Marvellous by Dawn French
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A book written in diary form. The first chapter being that of the 17 near 18 year old daughter displaying typical teen and mother relationship. But funny as hell!

A book full of pleasant little twists and turns and a few predictable ones towards the end but I would read this again for the laughs, the knowledge (yes, there are a few bits that will prepare me for my daughter’s advancing towards her teenage years!)

The characters are endearing and you, as the reader begin to wonder what they will do when the book ends.

I think Dawn French as a writer is a bloody brilliant idea. She has proven her worth as a comedienne bit her wit comes across the three/four characters she writes and I love them and her for it. It felt like a reality show in book form.

I genuinely can’t wait for Dawn’s next book!

Confessions of a GPConfessions of a GP by Benjamin Daniels
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is one of those that I think everyone should read. I had a slight misguided belief about G.P.’s and this book has given me an insight into their world.

Births, deaths, home visits and personal examinations, all things we know Dr’s have to do but don’t really like to think about as we sit in the waiting room. Although I do secretly wish Dr Benjamin Daniels was my G.P.

I have been given an insight into a world of targets, politics and mental exhaustion.

It has made me think twice about some of the G.P.’s I have met. Although, some of them really do need their bedside manner looked at!

As patients, you can get thrown out of the surgery for being rude and abusive, so why as a patient should we accept rude and blatant disregard for diagnosing issues from a Doctor who gives the impression that they don’t give a shit if you took an overdose.

Anyway, definitely one I will recommend others to read.

Very enlightening and amusing (made me laugh out loud several times!)

I liked this one.

We Need to Talk About KevinWe Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

This is a review, I wrote by hand at the time I read this book.

“I hate this book with a passion! Not only when reading it, has it made me feel obtuse but it has made me doubt my own mothering skills and maternal instincts.

I found Eva to be an annoying character with no endearing qualities. Franklin to be the type of father more happy to brush Kevin’s misdemeanour’s under the carpet to protect the illusion of his perfect American boy. The only character I felt anything for was Celia. A clingy little girl who wanted desperately to see the good in her vile, psychopathic brother.

It was obvious from the moment Kevin realised/ found out that Eva was pregnant, that the poor child would end up persecuted and abused by her brother.

I wanted to punch Franklin for his inability to see that his son could be that evil. Eva, I could sympathise with, only during the toddler years. The feeling that your child hates you, is a hard one to shake. (Post Natal Depression will do that to you).

In the end, I finished reading this book out of bloody spite. I wanted to know the details. That was it.

All in all. I despised the read.

It was hard going. It made me feel stupid. I am not stupid and that Eva is a clever woman, but it felt as though she was writing to Franklin with the same contempt in which she held for her son. Even if she were pointing out his parenting flaws.

I hated this book!”

Looking back on this book, although it’s safe to say I won’t ever pick this book up again, I have possibly seen a few different things that I didn’t at the time.

Eva, as a mother is a selfish one, craving love and adoration from her son, when it wasn’t freely given, her daughter became the replacement for that need.
Franklin is a selfish father who didn’t give a shit as long as his family looked the part.
Kevin, well, people are so willing to overlook their child’s shitty behaviour without actually pushing for an idea, that he was allowed to get away with murder.

Celia is the only one of the four that I truly feel sorry for. She suffered. Both mentally and physically at the hands of her brother, who in the end took her life.

This book was predictable a read as the rain is to fall in Wales. Every turn was expected, as was every twist.

The copy I had of this book, I gave away.

The Undomestic GoddessThe Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is the second time I have read this book now and I still adore it.
I adore that it makes me laugh and makes my heart ache so desperately.

Samantha is an enthralling character and the journey that you, the reader, goes on with her is beautiful.

I love the characters. Nat is painted like an Adonis, which is refreshingly perverse in this delightful book.

I love this book and always will.

Devil's ChildDevil’s Child by Jerry Coyne
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is truly a horrific read. A young child/boy/teenager who is abused systematically by the people who are meant to be keeping him safe.

I have never truly understood why people hide behind religion and use it as an excuse for extreme and horrific violence. The nuns who were meant to care for Jerry as a toddler and boy, beat him senseless. Then his house master began sexually and physically abusing him, and tried to use mental cruelty to control him.

It makes you wonder how these authoritative people got away with such systematic abuse of their charges. It’s disgusting.

I know that the care system is still dangerously flawed. But to blame an obviously disturbed boy who was lashing out for how he was being and had been abused.

Another read that pulled at my heart strings, as both a survivor myself and a mother.

Call the MidwifeCall the Midwife by Jennifer Worth
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book doesn’t paint a glossy picture of London post-war, and it’s refreshing for it. The blunt honesty that the author writes about what she feels can be unpleasant at times but she can be forgive as she was naive to the way of life for the poorer classes at the time.

Her compassion and humility are admirable considering what she faced in the line of her work.

I read this book after seeing the T.V. series and I am glad I did. I struggled to like Jenny Lee and adored Chummy. Jenny Lee’s character is better portrayed in the book (mainly because it has some autobiographical qualities to it).

The fact that I could read much more about her story was much more effective to me.

I adored the way the stories were set out, although I would have loved to have read more about Chummy.

A fab read that reminded me how far we have come with modern medicine in the last 70 years but that we are still selfish and believe we know what’s best for everyone.

A recommended read for anyone.

Mum's ListMum’s List by St. John Greene
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

WOW! This book has had me in tears to the point where they (the tears) are rolling down my cheeks accompanied by silent sobs. It is a heartbreaking tale of a family’s unbelievable story. It’s still clearly fresh in “Singe’s” head and the boys are still young.

This book hasn’t made me feel pity for the family as I know they are moving on. I saw them on This Morning, it’s why I bought the book. I am so bloody glad I did. I have spent the last 5 years stressing over shit I have no control over. Why am I letting it dictate who I am now?
I am lucky and privileged to be here and to have such a beautiful daughter and a loving husband.

Although reading another family’s pain hurt like a bitch, with other events happening around me too, I have been able to finally realise what I have and to start appreciating the giggles, intellectual and tender moments with my girl. Without beating myself up with guilt after. I am learning.

I would recommend this book to anyone. It’s beautifully poignant and such a beautiful story.

View all my reviews

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