Thursday, 21 January 2021

First Mini-Reviews of 2021

I know I’ve done mini-reviews already this year for my Christmas and New Year reading. And with everything happening and With lockdown and reading/blogging fatigue, I need to get back in the rhythm of blogging again. And, while I do plan to post at least two review/write-ups a month (and take more breaks and use Goodreads more - this is when I should turn round to you and go “BEFRIEND ME ON GOODREADS at!” Or ask you guys for what other bookish social media do you use as I am tempted to try something new?), I felt like I could do that with these two titles, my first in 2021.

And they are curveballs. I think you might like them both...

Title And Author:
The Good Hawk by Joseph Elliott
Publisher: Walker Books
Physical, eBook or Audiobook: Physical
Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Gifted by publisher in exchange for an honest review/write-up
Length: 352 Pages

Set in a mystical Scotland, we follow Agatha and Jaime as times are changing in their clan. People whisper about Agatha behind her back, thinking that because of condition she was born with, she isn’t reliable enough and Jaime, thoughtful yet anxious, is chosen to do his duty for the clan. A duty that the clan doesn’t done in generations as it’s against their ways: to marry. Then elders won’t say why but things take a dark turn when, on the night of his wedding, the clan is kidnapped. It’s up to Jaime and Agatha to rescue them…

I loved this book. I fell for it hard and I can’t wait to read the second in the trilogy, The Broken Raven, once I have some other titles out of the way (my TBR is out of control!). It’s mystical, strongly written, darkly gripping and tackled inclusion and diversity I ways that felt effortless. 

If you are a fan of Michelle Paver’s Chronicles of Ancient Darkness or Wolf Brother series, you need this on your radar. You can thank me later. 

And now, let’s change gears and time frames, shall we? 

Title And Author:
The Curious Dispatch of Daniel Costello by Chris McDonald
Publisher: Red Dog Press
Physical, eBook or Audiobook: eBook
Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: Bought
Length: 106 Pages

Adam Whyte is stuck. He’s out of work (again), lives at home with his mum, watches far too many returns of Sherlock and other TV murder mysteries and he’s groomsman to a wedding where the best man is murdered. Well, Adam thinks it’s murder. The Police have dismissed it as natural causes but something doesn’t feel right to Adam and, with his trivia of TV crime shows, he wants to get to the bottom of it. 

This was a fun cosy crime novella. I know I don’t read cosy crime often (the last time I did, I got annoyed over the main character and the troupe of “Missing Priceless Jewels”. I always find that, if this troupe isn’t written just so, I get frustrated with it very quickly) but I do like them. We need something fun and cosy to read on dark winter nights over a mug of cocoa/Horlicks. I read this over a course of a day and I openly laughed while reading this. This cosy mystery was funny (and, as you know, writing comedy in books/novellas is hard so the author got the quirk humour spot on is a big tick from me). Plus, the friendship between Adam and his best friend, Colin, was a joy to read. 

Yes, there is one or two things that were a tad weak but, in a cosy crime novella, you have to forgive it up to a point. But this was fun. Not gonna be everyone’s cup of tea (cosy crime is very marmite, I find), but I am intrigued to see where this series goes next.

And that’s it. I liked both these a lot and, like I say, I plan to continue with both. Hopefully, the next bookish post I write will be much longer/fuller as I am reading something that is more outside my comfort zone reading-wise and I might plan some themed reading months on The Pewter Wolf Reads… Anyone else worried/excited?

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