Monthly Archives: April 2011

The Invisible Band

… is the name of the 2001 album by Travis. It was invisible for a long time, indeed. The CD  was, in fact, at the bottom of a box and I’d forgotten about it completely until I discovered it today while cleaning the back room (activity long overdue) and decided this was going into the “things I’d like to keep” pile. That is probably the best thing about cleaning up, you find things you had totally forgotten about, things you never knew you had and things you were glad you found.

So let’s Sing, Sing, Sing, Sing….


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Secret Smile – Nicci French

Last year, when I read Killing Me Softly by the same authors, I thought, now that’s an interesting book. It was fast paced but slow compared to this one, a bit creepy (ok, more than a bit) and left me with a lingering thought at the back of my mind that I should read at least another one of their written works. And so I did.

In Secret Smile, there’s a feeling of deja-vu, like Adam Tallis (one of the two main characters from Killing Me Softly) has been resurrected and given another chance at messing people’s lives.

Handsome guy, Brendan, meets nice girl, Miranda, and they start going out. Unfortunately he has one major flaw this particular nice girl doesn’t like: snooping around. She decides to end their barely started relationship and things seem to stop before having a chance to really take off. What she doesn’t know is that he never lets things go. With cunning precision, Brendan insinuates himself into Miranda’s family, makes himself liked among Miranda’s friends while at the same time never losing an opportunity to taunt and harass her. By the time I got halfway through the book I was really annoyed with Miranda for always trying to be the good girl, never fighting back, and with the people around her for not believing her when she told them the truth. A family member and a friend have to die before Miranda takes matters into her own hands and as she tries to find out more about Brendan and in the process becoming more and more frustrated with his actions, she fights back for a change, in a really surprising way. I didn’t see that coming.

The book is a quick read and it has that I-want-to-get-to-the-bottom-of-this feel to it, which made me want to read it as fast as possible just to find out if the bad guy gets his comeuppance in the end.

If I had to choose between the two books, I must say I prefer Killing Me Softly, for the slower action and the gradual build-up of tension. Secret Smile felt a bit too rushed, but in the end I enjoyed reading both.

*Read between 26-29 March, 2011

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Thanks for the Memories – Cecelia Ahern

If anybody asked me what three things I’d like to take with me on an island, I would say  two books and a sunscreen lotion. I had two books with me on my trip to Koh Chang (Elephant Island), and one of them was Thanks for the Memories.

The reason I bought this book was P.S. I Love You, the movie. I just loved that movie (I must confess Gerard Butler helped a lot in that regard) and even though I haven’t read the book this movie was based on or any other book by this author for that matter, I decided it was time to break the ice.

Thanks for the Memories is what I like to refer to as ‘light reading’. After “The Poisonwood Bible” and “The Passage” I felt the need for something different, something romantic and more optimistic.

The story is pretty uncomplicated and even though you can see where it’s going, it’s the journey that counts and not the destination, as the saying goes.

Joyce and Justin (it almost sounds like Jack and Jill, doesn’t it) are two people at a crossroads in their lives and it almost felt like fate said, let’s take these two and put them together, they would do just fine. How that happens is a bit out of the ordinary and without giving too much away I can safely say it was quite fun to read as Joyce decided to follow her instincts and walk the path that would eventually take her to Justin.

Even though the book doesn’t start on a lighter note, there are quite a few scenes and characters too, that soon change that. Joyce’s father spices things up a bit in a very old fashioned and endearing way, followed closely by Justin’s sister in law whose “inch-long leopard print nails and skin-tight leather-trouser-clad hips” brought back to mind Peggy Bundy from the “Married with Children” tv series.

All in all an entertaining read, just perfect for a day on the beach under a big tree with the sun winking cheerfully through the leaves above and the sound of the waves in the background.

*Read in March, 2011

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