Monday, March 7

February books

The Help, Kathryn Stockett Photobucket

I was fortunate to find this one in a charity shop. I had been eyeing it on Amazon for months. I'm glad I waited because I didn't find it anywhere near as wonderful as it's many reviewers did. It is a good story, from the viewpoint of black servants. Bravely attempted by a white writer. I think she did a pretty good job, imh(white)o. The secondary story, a romance, is really poor. I did enjoy the novel as a very light read, I just wouldn't recommend it at full price.

The Forgotton Garden, Kate Morton Photobucket

I enjoyed this one very much. It's a tale to immerse yourself in purely for the pleasure of losing oneself in a good story. Mystery, romance, loss, ghosts, three time periods, the meaning of family. Set in Australia and England, and best of all (for me), ultimately on the Cornish coast. It has it's flaws but it's a very good Summer read methinks.

Eleven Minutes, Paulo Coelho

Quite horrid. Begins well enough, but it descends into this pseudo-philosophical-psycho-babble-sex-manual-romance travesty. This was my first Coelho, so I will give him another go with something completely different. His writing style is mediocre but readable enough. Just need to find a good story of his. I know The Alchemist was a best seller.


Grumpy Cat, Britta Teckentrup
age: 1-3

A very simple tale and simply illustrated. A grumpy cat is a really a lonely cat, and is befriended by a kitten. Not a favourite but nice if you find it in the library or on sale.

The Cow That Laid an Egg , Andy Cutbill
age: 2-5

Marjorie feels unspecial, compared to her hand-standing, bike-riding cow friends. So the kind chickens help out by making it seem she laid an egg. She becomes famous and the egg finally hatches. Will she be caught out? Quite amusing. My girl loves cows and eggs cracking open, so she enjoys this. I think the illustrations would be better appreciated by over 3s.

Monkey Puzzle, Julia Donaldson
age: 1-3

I've seen this on many Amazon lists and never bought it because the descriptions were so vague. It turns out it's a sweet story about a monkey looking for his mother. A butterfly tries to help but keeps finding the wrong mamas. My girl loves most mother-child type stories, as well as animals, so this is a hit. Wish I had found it when she was younger.

Scarface Claw, Lynley Dodd
age: 3-5

She loves the Slinky Malinki series, so I was happy to find this at the library. This one brings out the 'villian' of the original for his own spot in the limelight. He isn't afraid of anything, but himself! I will end up buying it because she'll have it re-read as much as the others.

Read anything good last month?


  1. The Cow That Laid an Egg. That looks like a must have. : ) Too cute!

  2. Z loves Monkey Puzzle! I'll have to check out the others since we are currently talking about cats so much.

    I wasn't intrigued by The Alchemist. Probably would have been 20 years ago though.

    Love these reviews.

  3. Ok, I think I want to read Forgotten Garden!! I'm writing it down. It has all the elements I like and historical fictions use to be my favorite, until I got all cerebral about change and such. Thanks for the recs!! And I LOVE the artwork for The Cow and The Egg.

  4. I liked The Help better than you did I think, had about the same opinion on Forgotten Garden. I never have been a big Paulo Coelho fan, even the Alchemist, and I haven't tried this one. I always feel a bit guilty saying that, as so many people I know love his stuff, and from the descriptions his books always sound like something I would like. Something puts me off about them, can't quite put my finger on it.
    I'm back into some non-fiction stuff now, but nothing so far that I would necessarily recommend...we'll see

  5. Ditto on The Forgotten Garden, fun read :)

  6. like the sound of that Kate Morton one, I shall keep a look out for that. My children have both loved all the Julia Donaldson books, I think they are classics, although Monkey Puzzle is probably my least favourite of hers.

    I was ill last weekend and spent the day in bed - for a very undemanding, after a sleepless night read, I enjoyed Annie Saunders "getting mad, getting even" Light, bright and not to taxing on the few brain cells I had left!

  7. Hey I found her site on and I'm glad I did. I'm going to follow your site cause I'm loving some of the books your posting.

    Keep up the good work. - smile


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