Tag Archive: The Kitschies

Jul 22

Book Review: The Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne

What’s It About When Meena wakes one morning with snake bites across her chest she decides, in a panic, to leave Mumbai and travel to Ethiopia, the place where her parents met.  Her intention is to traverse The Trail a massive energy harvesting bridge that links India and Africa.  Thirty years previously, Mariama makes the …

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Jul 14

Book Review: The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers

What’s It About Join the multi-specie crew of the Wayfarer as they travel the galaxy punching wormholes into the fabric of space and time. Representative Paragraph The ship’s Doctor and Chef is fascinated with Rosemary’s name (she’s the new addition to the crew). “Rosemary, Rosemary,” said Dr. Chef, taking her hand. “Herbs are my very favorite …

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Jul 10

Book Review: Viper Wine by Hermione Eyre

What’s It About This is the story of Sir Kenelm Digby and his wife Venetia.  They were the IT couple of the 17th Century and their story is one of beauty potions, vanity, religion, scientific discovery based on rational deduction rather than mysticism and, sadly, tragedy. Representative Paragraph Yesterday she [Venetia] was in her knot garden …

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Jul 07

Book Review: The People in the Trees by Hanya Yanagihara

What’s It About It’s the memoir of fictional Nobel Laureate, Norton Perina, who, in the 1950s, discovers a link between a rare turtle found in a remote Micronesian island and the possibility of eternal life.  Norton’s legacy is tainted by later accusations of child abuse and pedophilia. Representative Paragraph A neat comparison… But science, specifically …

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Jul 03

So, who should have won the Kitschies Red Tentacle Award for Best Novel…

Here is a reminder of the five nominees with links to my outrageous, provocative and always controversial reviews: Grasshopper Jungle, by Andrew Smith (Electric Monkey) Lagoon, by Nnedi Okorafor (Hodder & Stoughton) The Peripheral, by William Gibson (Viking) The Way Inn, by Will Wiles (4th Estate) The Race, by Nina Allan (NewCon Press) First off …

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Jun 30

Book Review: Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor

What’s It About? Set in Lagos, the novel is a vibrant mix of alien first contact, superheroes and Nigerian myths and legends. Representative Paragraph Two children meet an alien for the first time… “Don’t you want to speak to a real live alien?” Kola asked. “Like the ones in the movies?” Fred vigorously shook his …

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Jun 25

Book Review: The Way Inn by Will Wiles

What’s It About A creepy and dark novel about reality bending motels and business conferences. Representative Paragraph The “conference surrogate” is probably the greatest idea ever invented in all of literature.  (Hyperbole intended!!!!) “I meant,” I said, “why are you here at the conference? Aren’t there places you would rather be? Back at the office, getting …

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Jun 04

Book Review: The First Fifteen Live of Harry August by Claire North

What’s It About In 2013, Kate Atkinson published the very good, and critically acclaimed, Life After Life of which the sequel, A God in Ruins, has just been published.  Life After Life follows the many lives and deaths of Ursula Todd.  It was Groundhog Day, but where the character had no memory (other than a vague inkling) of their …

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May 01

Book Review: Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

What’s It About History.  Sex.  And 6 foot tall praying mantises attacking a small town in Iowa.  So, you know, the usual fare. Should I Read It? Yes – but I recommend that you read a sample first. In an attempt to reflect the thought processes of a sexually confused 16 year old boy, the novel bludgeons …

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Apr 27

Book Review: The Race by Nina Allan

What’s It About The back cover copy of The Race would lead you to believe that the entire novel is set on the coastal town of Sapphire, suffering a slow decline from fracking and ecological disaster.  And while that’s partly true, Sapphire and its denizens only comprise a fourth of the novel.  In actual fact The Race consists of …

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