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Få inspiration til din næste læseoplevelse og læs mere om alt lige fra kærlighed, krimi, YA og historiske romaner til fantasy, science fiction og gys. Alt er på dansk - på nær de anmeldelser, jeg har lyst til at skrive på engelsk. Occasional posts/reviews in English.
~ Iben
Bibliotekar, bogblogger & boganmelder

30/06/2014

The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time by Mark Haddon

Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the color yellow.
Although gifted with a superbly logical brain, fifteen-year-old Christopher is autistic and everyday interactions and admonishments have little meaning for him. He lives on patterns, rules, and a diagram kept in his pocket. Then one day, a neighbor's dog, Wellington, is killed and his carefully constructive universe is threatened. Christopher sets out to solve the murder in the style of his favorite (logical) detective, Sherlock Holmes. What follows makes for a novel that is deeply funny, poignant, and fascinating in its portrayal of a person whose curse and blessing are a mind that perceives the world entirely literally.

I don't usually review books twice but The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time is such a special book it deserved a lot more attention than the mini-review I posted right after reading it during the readathon.

This particular book is in my eyes brilliant. I've never before read any book that in such a natural way portrays the life and thoughts of an autistic child. I dare say that I've learned a lot from it - and not just through the simple and elegant explanations of mathematical problems I've never before been able to wrap my head around.

The story in itself is sweet and simple and yet complicated as only life can be when love and broken hearts are involved - and worse yet, when a child is caught in the middle.

The book isn't for all, for sure. I tried getting my mom to read it (we often share the same taste in regular fiction books) but she didn't get hooked by it at all and never got through it. I'll still recommend it far and wide though, it doesn't seem to have gotten nearly enough attention in Denmark at least.


The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time
by Mark Haddon
ISBN13: 9780224063784
272 pages / published in 2003
     


Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2014

17/06/2014

The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith

After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office.
Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.
You may think you know detectives, but you've never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you've never seen them under an investigation like this.
Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.

This is not your average crime/detective novel.

My usual encounters with that genre is the very acclaimed Scandinavian crime novels and the more British stuff like Midsomer Murders (TV) as well as the very American style (also TV) like CSI / Special Victim Unit / etc. I cannot compare The Cuckoo's Calling to any of those.

Many say it's too long winded and take ages to get going. And it is and it does. But this book I discovered, isn't really about the crime committed. This is about the characters, and most of all it's about Cormoran Strike (which, by the way, is really the stupidest name ever). Like her previous non-Harry Potter novel, The Casual Vacancy, this book is very much about psychology and sociology and I freaking love it. I did also enjoy the detective work, but found it a tad hard to follow. It annoys me a bit when you're not given enough pieces of the puzzle to figure out at all what went down.

All in all though I really enjoyed the book and remain Rowling's dedicated reader. She's brilliant. The writing is as great as always and I love how well she writes people. Every single character matters, every single character has depth of some sort. Like I said, the crime plot isn't the most important part of this book, it's just what happens to be the red thread in the depiction of these people.

I also can't wait to read the second book in the series, The Silkworm, that's only just been published, here in June 2014.


The Cuckoo's Calling
Cormoran Strike #1
by Robert Galbraith
[ Pseudonym = J.K. Rowling ]
ISBN13: 9781408703991
449 pages / published in 2013
     


Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2014

11/06/2014

Asking for Trouble by Elizabeth Young

Unmarried, thirty-year-old Sophy Metcalfe told a little white he to soothe her nagging mother. The white lies name was "Dominic," the ideal boyfriend: charming, successful, the kind of prospective son-in-law that would make any mother proud. But now that Sophy's thin and beautiful sister, Belinda, is getting married, Dominic is going to have to make an appearance in the flesh -- which should be a pretty neat trick ... since the genuine article vanished from Sophy's life after a single, singularly unmemorable evening. So she resorts to a very drastic measure -- aka Josh Carmichael, the escort she hires at the very last minute, sight unseen.
But the trouble with white lies is that they tend to multiply. The trouble with rugged, too-sexy, and independent Josh is ... well, that Sophy's actually beginning to like him! Even if they make it through the Wedding Day from Hell together -- with its new intrigues, old flames, and all-too-familiar faces -- there's the night that follows... and, of course, the morning after. And that could end up being the biggest trouble of all!

A while back I was watching television and saw a cute film - The Wedding Date. I noticed it was based on a book and ordered it straightaway.

Firstly, let me shortly summarize the film: A woman living in the US hires an escort to be her pretend fiancé for her sister's wedding as to impress friends and family in the UK (and get them off her back for being single) as well as annoy ex-boyfriend who is also attending the wedding as the best man. The film is very Hollywood, very sweet and quite different from the book!

The book is also about a woman, who hires an escort to be her pretend fiancé for her sister's wedding - and this is just about where the direct similarities between book and film ends. The book is about a Bridget Jones' type character, and the entire thing takes place in the UK with the humour being very British (which on another note is why I think many Americans seem to hate the book, I don't think the sarcasm and the dry/dark humour translates very well culture-wise).

Sophy, the MC, can at times be infuriating as she manages to get herself into the most stupid of situations that could have been entirely avoided if she'd just been honest (however, then there wouldn't have been much of a story). She differs vastly from the film MC, who's your average Hollywood model, as she is very aware of her body weight and size (not a size 0). I notice many on Goodreads call the book out for weight obsession and even misogyny, but honestly I just think it's a humorous book which lets the main character be just as obsessed with her body as most women truly are. It doesn't claim you have to be thin, it simply shows a fictional woman who's just as influenced by body image and ideal as actual women are.

// rant off //

All in all, it threw me a fair bit that the book differed so vastly from the film, but once I'd gotten that into my head, I really started to enjoy the book. I love the British humour and feel of it and I loved the characters (and Josh is so much more delicious than the "hunk" from the film will ever be). In hindsight I find the film too Hollywood goofy and the book pretty brilliant.


Asking for Trouble
by Elizabeth Young
ISBN13: 9780380818976
408 pages / published in 2001
     


Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2014

06/06/2014

Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts by Lucy Dillon

Thirty-nine year old Rachel is having a really bad year. After losing her job and breaking up with her boyfriend, Rachel has inherited her late aunt's house, her beloved border collie, and a crowded rescue kennel, despite the fact that she knows almost nothing about dogs. Still, considering her limited options, she gamely takes up the challenge of running the kennel. And as Rachel starts finding new homes for the abandoned strays, it turns out that it might not just be the dogs that need rescuing.

Ever since reading Jojo Moyes' Me Before You, I've craved romance and love stories. On a shift in the library bus I came across a bestseller book (which can only be borrowed for 14 days, rather than the usual 30 days) and instantly knew this was a must-read. Already on the bus that day (8 hours and just about no "customers"). I ate over half the book. I finished it the very same evening.

Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts is in one word summarized cute. It has about 3 main characters from whom you get a point of view and several more important supporting characters. And then there's all the dogs of course. The setting is a cute little village of sorts and the whole atmosphere is pleasant.

Spoiler: absolutely nothing dreadful happens. Without being downright plastered with a big happy face, this is a happy book. Yes there are heart aches and annoying situations and frustrations and battles to be fought. But it's all just so damn pleasant and nice and dear God I want to live in this book and have life be this simple and nice.

*ahem*

So what I'm trying to say is, this is a very good book, but I suppose some might find it too simplistic and lovely (spoilsports). I loved it though and recommend it to anyone who needs a cheer-me-up read or something nice and uncomplicated for the holidays.




Lost Dogs and Lonely Hearts
(read in Danish: Ensomme Hjerter og Herreløse Hunde)
by Lucy Dillon
ISBN13: 9788771160154
471 pages / published in 2009




Review by Iben Jakobsen, BoB, 2014