I like this Challenge which has no theme linking the books, except that it is based purely on the book title. Each category is complete in itself, so it is ideal to use to whittle down my to-be-read books or to include new books or books from the library. It’s worked well, although I didn’t read most of the books I’d listed in my sign-up post, but four of the books are from my TBR shelves – so that’s a good thing.
The books I read (linking to my posts on the books):
1. A book with up or down (or equivalent) in the title: Falling Angels by Tracy Chevalier (from TBR books) – I was fascinated by this book! It has depth both of characterisation and of themes €“ family relationships, in particular that of mother and daughter, attitudes towards death and mourning, the change in social codes, the perils of being an unmarried mother and the beginnings of the women’s movement. I should have got round to reading it ages ago.
2. A book with something you’d find in your kitchen in the title: Dead Water by Ann Cleeves (a new book) – I loved this latest book in Ann Cleeve’s Shetland series, featuring Detective Jimmy Perez as he investigates the death of journalist Jerry Markham, found drifting in a yoal, a traditional Shetland boat in Aith marina. Cleeves writes with clarity, so that you can easily picture the people and the places she describes.
3. A book with a party or celebration in the title: The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge (from TBR books) – another great novel that I loved, this is about Captain Scott’s last Antarctic Expedition. It gets inside each man’s mind, vividly describing the events as they progressed to the South Pole and the terrible conditions they had to endure. Beryl Bainbridge’s imagination and research combined make this a dramatic heroic story and an emotional roller-coaster set in the beautiful but deadly dangerous frozen landscape of the Antarctic.
4. A book with fire (or equivalent) in the title: Daughters of Fire by Barbara Erskine (from TBR books) – historical time-slip fiction switching between the present day and the first century CE Britannia, a mix of historical fiction, fantasy and romance. I was a bit disappointed with this book as although the essential story was good, it dragged on, drowned in words and by the repetition of the struggles between the characters. Because of this the ending was drained of any impact and suspense for me.
5. A book with an emotion in the title: The Case of the Curious Bride by Erle Stanley Gardner (from TBR books) – a Perry Mason book, which I thought was far-fetched and unsatisfactory as Perry resorts to trickery, fooling everyone.
6. A book with lost or found (or equivalent) in the title: The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown (a new acquisition on Kindle) – pure escapist reading, this is a breathtaking race over 24 hours as Robert Langdon follows the clues, to rescue the his friend, Peter Solomon, a Mason. Not great literature but great entertainment.