On My Bookshelf – My bookish week

On-My-Book-Shelf.pngMy bookish week

Finally, after what seems to have been a very busy few weeks with work, more research for a book I am planning and then writing books reviews I have finally got round to starting what I hope will be a weekly round-up of my book week. So without further ado welcome to the first in a series of On My Bookshelf – My book week.

Nothing beats that knock on the door then being greeted by your friendly postman as he hands you more book posts, as my postman is a keen book lover he takes a real interest in what books arrive, he also likes to make a note of what future releases are due out. The next best thing is stalking book shops (not sure I should add stalking). You see I just can’t help myself, if I go in to a book store to browse I always tend to come out with a book or two as if I had no idea how that happened. So last Saturday I was in the beautiful city of Exeter and there is not one but two Waterstones branches so I was spoilt.

I came out with a hardback copy of the wonderful Kate Atkinson’s A God in Ruins Not sure how but I missed it first time it was released.


As A God in Ruins follows on from Life After Life, and we follow Teddy as this is his story a pilot in WWII if you have not read A God in Ruins as yet then this is a must, it follows Teddy from his youth to his death as a pilot of a Halifax bomber. As I write this A God in Ruins has been longlisted for the Bailey’s prize 2016. A full review will appear at future date.

I also picked up a copy of The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley the 2015 Costa Book Awards Winner.


So onto this week’s book posts and some really fabulous book arrivals, earlier this week saw arrive in the post the second novel from Katie Marsh called A Life Without You to be published 14 July 2016 by Hodder & Stoughton.

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Katie’s first novel My Everything was beautifully written though sad there is the hope of second chances. I did wonder how she would follow My Everything in her forthcoming novel Katie writes about early-onset of Alzheimer’s and for those like me who have lost loved ones to this terrible disease, it will be a book that you must add your reading list. I was both shocked and surprised to see that I get a little mention in the acknowledgments section in the back of the book. There will of course be a review of A Life Without You in near future.

Arriving in midweek was The French Lesson by Hallie Rubenhold due for release on 21 April by Doubleday. Hallie is an historical consultant for both TV and film.


Hallie’s new novel The French Lesson is set during the French Revolution and is told from the perspective of the female power players. Full of intrigue and suspense and if you enjoy historical fiction this is a must. I will be reviewing shortly.

Also arrived this week is the forthcoming latest from the best-selling author Louise Candlish called The Swimming Pool due out on 5 May by Penguin books.


This promises to be a real thriller, set in a heady summer and the Elm Hill Lido has opened and Natalie finds she is spending time by the pool drawn by the glamorous Laura Channing, but something is not as it seems, why is Natalie haunted by another Summer from the distant past? The Swimming Pool promises to be a dark and addictive.

Arriving with the book was a short story by Louise called The Intruder at Number 40.

The Intruder at Number 40

At around 30 pages and available for download for Kindle through amazon this is a story of an estate agent in an affluent town called Lime Park, a story of illicit thoughts connected to Amber Fraser, and for Ryan Steer, Amber Fraser is worth the risk.

Being a lover of the natural world, I was delighted with today’s books one from 2015 and one very recent release.

Rain and Common Ground

Rain by Melissa Harrison was released on 3 March by Faber & Faber and looks at our relationship with one of the elements we know so well in this country, and I am talking of rain. Four seasons, four rain showers and four different parts of the country in Wicken Fen, Shropshire, Darent Valley and Dartmoor. In Rain, Mellisa looks at how our countryside changes with each shower as well as our relationship as well as the wildlife that inhabits these areas. Melissa writes a monthly column for The Times called the Nature Notebook which is worth a read if you have not come across it.  I will be reviewing Rain by Melissa Harrison soon.

Common Ground by Rob Cowan has just been released in paperback by Windmill Books and is a pure delight to read for anyone who loves wonderful nature writing.  Rob moved from London to Yorkshire and over the course of one year in one square mile looks at the kaleidoscope of wildlife in that square mile. This is nature writing at it’s very best. Full review to follow.

In the last week I have reviewed the following two books Blood and Roses by Catherine Hokin published by Yolk Publishing.


You can read my review Here  and then my next came the amazing Rush Oh! by Shirley Barrett one of the best debut novels so far in 2016 and is now longlisted for the Bailey’s Prize 2016 and personally speaking I am hoping it makes the shortlist next week.


You can read my review Here  So on to my current reading this weekend. From the pen of Helen Oyeyemi comes What is Not Yours is Not Yours.

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Due for release on 21 April by Picador What is Not Yours is Not Yours. Is an incredible series of short stories from lost libraries to locked gardens and of marshalnds where the drowned dead live.  A stunning collection of stories. A full review will be published soon. When the hardback hits the shops later this month my advice go and check the book out, the actual cover is something rather special.

Also just re-released and published by Black Swan is the classic The Last Good Kiss by James Crumley.

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First released in 1978 it has become a cult crime novel, having an alcoholic bulldog in the story called Fireball Roberts must surely be a cult crime novel. Look out for my review coming soon.

Book reviews coming in the coming week include My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout and published by Viking and is also longlisted for the Bailey’s prize 2016.

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Then there will be the review of The Midnight Watch by David Dyer published Atlantic Books and tells the infamous story of SS Californian and the Titanic and its role as the Titanic sank with the loss of so many lives. A timely release as the anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic approaches.

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That’s it for this week’s round up you can of course follow me on Twitter @thelastword1962 for lots more bookish chat. Until next time.