Ralph Returns With The Best In Books…And Some Misses


Ralph Mcallister reports: ‘As with so many others plans, mine has suffered too.
Perhaps you haven’t had recourse to mind the gap because you were in London?

Get it?

Never mind.

Eclectic mix for you here in an attempt to regain your interest.

THE HOUSE OF FORTUNE is Jessie Burton’s sequel to the hugely successful THE MINIATURIST of some eight years ago.
Eighteenth century Amsterdam is again the setting for Thea to fall in love with theatrical handsome Walter while older generation Otto and Nelly try to maintain the Herengracht house and hide the  past .

Wonderful story giving me added pleasure as I have lived in and loved that city for many years, but a warning,you should read THE MINIATURIST first.

‘Every Cloak Rolled in Blood’

No secret that I am a huge fan of James Lee Burke having read almost all of his thirty novels.
Sad to say then that EVERY CLOAK ROLLED IN BLOOD is not Burke at his best.
It is a deeply personal account of the real death of a daughter and the links with ghosts and spirits and conversations.
The writing is as shimmeringly beautiful as ever, but finally,does not leave enough room for me to accept the fantastical.
Pity.

Disappointing too, another favourite novelist Australian Alex  Miller and his A BRIEF AFFAIR.
This simple account of a one-night stand in China  between two academics might have been more suited to the short story format.

It explores Fran’s guilt,her deceit,her place in academia ,and with the discovery of a diary the plot only compounds and repeats what was after all a one night stand.

Despite Miller’s continued brilliance at capturing the Australian landscape and his deeply sensitive understanding of people and their foibles, this time I was unmoved.

BIRNAM WOOD from Eleanor Catton is receiving great attention already.
Suffice for me to suggest that if you couldn’t cope with THE LUMINARIES,give this fast moving,funny, environmentally passionate,thrilling as in thriller , bloody story a go.

You won’t regret it.

Ralph
Another world beater?
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