Tag: Books: Magical Realism


Review: First Frost

Posted 6 June, 2017 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

First Frost (The Waverleys #2)
By: Sarah Addison Allen
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

A magical new novel from the New York Times bestselling author ofLost Lake, featuring characters from her beloved novel Garden Spells.

Autumn has finally arrived in the small town of Bascom, North Carolina, heralded by a strange old man appearing with a beat-up suitcase. He has stories to tell, stories that could change the lives of the Waverley women forever.

In an ideal world, I would’ve wanted to re-read the first book, Garden Spells (review), before reading this book but seeing as 1) I didn’t feel like re-reading it, 2) this book has been staring at me for some time now and 3) I was still in a bit of a reading slump but wanted some fiction to read. So here we are, at my review of First Frost at long last 🙂

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Books: A Batch of Mini-Reviews

Posted 17 September, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 8 Comments

Another batch of mini-reviews! 🙂 Lots of Brandon Sanderson in this one, but there’s also a few other titles noted here in this post. Included in this batch are:


A Man Came Out of a Door in the Mountain
By: Adrianne Harun
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

In isolated British Columbia, girls, mostly native, are vanishing from the sides of a notorious highway. Leo Kreutzer and his four friends are barely touched by these disappearances—until a series of mysterious and troublesome outsiders come to town. Then it seems as if the devil himself has appeared among them.

I remember when I first heard of this book, the premise sounded intriguing and unique from some of the stuff I usually read. I picked it up some time ago and had started reading it but after almost 100 pages in, I decided to put it down. I’m not sure if it was the time that I had read it or that I had chosen it as the book to read when travelling to and from work, but I just could not get into it. Almost 100 pages in, I wasn’t even sure what the book was about or where it was heading, which was a bad sign. Hence the DNF.

Rating: DNF

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Review: A God in Ruins

Posted 5 August, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 4 Comments

A God in Ruins
By: Kate Atkinson
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

In Life After Life Ursula Todd lived through the turbulent events of the last century again and again. In A God in Ruins, Atkinson turns her focus on Ursula’s beloved younger brother Teddy – would-be poet, RAF bomber pilot, husband and father – as he navigates the perils and progress of the 20th century. For all Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge will be to face living in a future he never expected to have.

After finishing Life After Life (review), I jumped right into this novel (a “companion novel”, I learned afterwards). Teddy was my favourite character from the last book and after the different navigations that his life turned out there, I wondered how the author was going to go about with his story. Further incentive to finally read this book (and its predecessor): it was longlisted for the 2016 Baileys Women’s Prize in Fiction 🙂

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Review: Life After Life

Posted 2 August, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 8 Comments

Life After Life
By: Kate Atkinson
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

What if you had the chance to live your life again and again, until you finally got it right?

During a snowstorm in England in 1910, a baby is born and dies before she can take her first breath.

During a snowstorm in England in 1910, the same baby is born and lives to tell the tale.

What if there were second chances? And third chances? In fact an infinite number of chances to live your life? Would you eventually be able to save the world from its own inevitable destiny? And would you even want to?

Life After Life follows Ursula Todd as she lives through the turbulent events of the last century again and again. With wit and compassion, she finds warmth even in life’s bleakest moments, and shows an extraordinary ability to evoke the past.

Oh my goodness, you guys, I finally got around to reading this book! As some of you may know–either from various discussion posts or from seasonal TTT TBR lists–I had been meaning to read this. I picked up the paperback some two years ago, having been wanting to read this book since I first heard of it. The premise sounded really cool, like the movie Sliding Doors or, a book I read more recently, Cynthia Swanson’s The Bookseller (sort of, anyway; review). After sitting on my TBR pile for as long as it has, I finally picked it up to read 🙂

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Review: Fifteen Dogs

Posted 8 April, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 9 Comments

Fifteen Dogs
By: André Alexis
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

— I wonder, said Hermes, what it would be like if animals had human intelligence.
— I’ll wager a year’s servitude, answered Apollo, that animals – any animal you like – would be even more unhappy than humans are, if they were given human intelligence.

And so it begins: a bet between the gods Hermes and Apollo leads them to grant human consciousness and language to a group of dogs overnighting at a Toronto vet­erinary clinic. Suddenly capable of more complex thought, the pack is torn between those who resist the new ways of thinking, preferring the old ‘dog’ ways, and those who embrace the change. The gods watch from above as the dogs venture into their newly unfamiliar world, as they become divided among themselves, as each struggles with new thoughts and feelings. Wily Benjy moves from home to home, Prince becomes a poet, and Majnoun forges a relationship with a kind couple that stops even the Fates in their tracks.

I first heard of this book when it was shortlisted for the Giller Prize 2015 and then again when it won. The premise of the novel sounded interesting so I kept on the lookout for it, snatching it up immediately shortly after it won the prize before they ran out of stock or anything (in short, prevent a repeat of what happened with Sean Michaels’ Us Conductors (review)).

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