Tuesday, 16 December 2008

An Offer you cant refuse, by Jill Mansell

Rating: 8/10

I truly enjoyed this book. The author managed to transport me into the life of Lola, who was paid 1000 pounds to leave her then bf, Dougie as his fna fna (or ra-ra or whatever you wanna call extremely rich and stuck up) mother did not like Lola as she was not going to University, and working in a chippy. Lola is appalled by this and refuses point blank - until she discovers a terrible secret and she has no choice but to take the money and finish with Dougie. She even managed to barter with her and got 12000 pounds.

Then, 3 years later, upon coming back to England, a twist of fate bringing Dougie and Lola back together, with Lola still loving him as much as ever, but Dougie discovers she was paid to break his heart.

She is then determine to make him forgive her and take her back. (Some annoying parts about her here). But nevertheless, I love the fact that I wanted to turn the pages even if it meant missing an hour of sleep. ;)

Seriously recommend this book! Its brilliant!

Sunday, 30 November 2008

Nobody's Baby but Mine...

Title: Nobody's Baby But Mine
Author: Susan E Phillips

Book was quite predictable. Even from the start. But it got me going, the genius physics professor Dr. Jane Darlington who desperately wants a baby, but without the commitment of a father, and that won't be easy. Jane's super-intelligence made her feel like a freak when she was growing up, and she's determined to spare her own child that suffering. Which means she must find someone very special to father her child. Someone...well... stupid.

She planned with her neighbour, to bed Cal Bonner, the Chicago Stars' legendary quarterback, who seemed to be the perfect choice. But looks and attitude towards life can be deceiving. A little too late, she then learns that the good ol'boy is a lot smarter than he lets on, and he's not about to be used and abandoned by a brainy baby-mad schemer.

The plot thickens... But predictably funny. I enjoyed the book, I would rate it 6/10.

MPH Discounts!!

Got sent this link this morning, from MPH and ACMA MALL: -

MPH Discounts


Though Im not sure if I will be purchasing any books anytime soon, as I havent read 5 of the books I bought a few months back...

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

P.D James- A Certain Justice

P.D. James – A Certain Justice

The theme of this story is the past. Try as you might, it’s always there. Like your shadow, there are times when you can lose sight of it. But trailing along, it always is. Hercule Poirot (I think) said we can always allow for one coincidence but only one. In this case, there are 2. This however, is an acceptable mistake for a brilliantly written story. In my opinion, one of her best. Warning: Parents may be disturbed by this story. Proceed with caution.

By- Rina

Friday, 3 October 2008

The Ex-Files by Jane Moore

A real comedy set in the current situation in England. Man (Mark) marrying a women (Fay) he loves, she is a talented beautiful model, he a successful chef with an accounting degree. Both husband and wife to be decided to invite their exes to the castle wedding, one of the exes is still very much in love with the man.

The wedding day scenario "Take a bride and groom, several relatives, four 'exes', mix with alcohol, and stand well back. Boom." Add in wickedly funny asides from a gay best friend and "explosive" doesn't even begin to cover it. So it's hardly a surprise that high-flying, high-maintenance model Fay Parker's dream of her big day doesn't quite go according to plan.

Fay is indulging in a little pre-wedding infidelity: "She fumbled with his shirt buttons," and 10 seconds later regretted it: "what exactly was she doing?" So the gorgeous stranger with the intriguing X-factor is sent packing. But be assured we haven't seen the last of him, he turns up at the wedding weekend in a very compromising position.

Mark's "exes" are Jenna, a sweetheart from school, and "feisty, opinionated" Kate. Mark and Kate lived happily together until the stress of Mark's job (as a chef) got in the way. He moved out "wondering if he'd done the right thing". But then he met beautiful, perfect Fay and fell head-over-heels in love. Or, at least he thinks he has. Needless to say Fay and Mark have unresolved issues, especially when the identity of Fay's handsome X-factor stranger is revealed. Cue tears, tantrums and some much-needed emotional honesty, before all is resolved. But who marries whom? Now that would be telling.

Monday, 8 September 2008

Twelve Red Herrings by Jeffrey Archer

12 Amazing gripping stories by Jeffrey Archer. I first read the book whilst on a girlie holiday in Thailand (I was waiting for my turn to have a spa massage). I stopped halfway, and didn't want to not know the ending of the first story! So I had to purchase the book when I got home.

Many of the 12 stories here, all of which feature false clues and twist endings, are based on "known" incidents.

"Trial and Error,"- an original but attenuated tale of a wronged man's thirst for revenge, kicks in only with its predictably wry twist.

"Chunnel Vision" offers a classic red herring by which Archer uses a jilted woman's revenge on her lover to divert our attention from the real threat to the lover's happiness.

"Never Stop on the Motorway"- a chilling story, plays on our expectations about an endangered woman's plight.

An original but flaccid is the last story, which features four rather obvious alternative endings that the reader can tack onto an opening gambit about a man picking up a woman at the theater.

Ratings- 10/10

Stoning of Soraya M

by: Freidoune Sahebjam

A chilling, true story of an innocent woman stoned to death for adultery in Iran.

It took me 1 day to finish this book. It was traumatising, yet, I had to finish the book to see what happens to the men she trusted. In the end, I wish the ending had a happy fairytale ending, unfortunately, it as this is one true story, happy ending was not the case. The worse is not the husband stoning her, her 2 sons also aimed her head and cheered while stoning(!!!)


Soraya M.'s husband, Ghorban-Ali, couldn't afford to marry another woman. Rather than returning Soraya's dowry, as custom required before taking a second wife, he plotted with four friends and a counterfeit mullah to dispose of her. Together, they accused Soraya of adultery. Her only crime was cooking for a friend's widowed husband. Exhausted by a lifetime of abuse and hardship, Soraya said nothing, and the makeshift tribunal took her silence as a confession of guilt. They sentenced her to death by stoning: a punishment prohibited by Islam but widely practiced. Day by day--sometimes minute by minute--Sahebjam deftly recounts these horrendous events, tracing Soraya's life with searing immediacy, from her arranged marriage and the births of her children to her husband's increasing cruelty and her horrifying execution, where, by tradition, her father, husband, and sons hurled the first stones.

Ratings: 10/10

Friday, 15 August 2008

The Princes in the Tower by Alison Weir

As written by Rina

The story of the death, in sinister circumstances, of the boy-king Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, is one of the most fascinating murder mysteries in English history. It is a tale with profound moral and social consequences, rich in drama, intrigue, treason, scandal and violence.

Children of England: The Three Heirs of King Henry VIII by Alison Weir

As written by Rina...

"God deliver us from the Physicians", exclaimed William Cecil after hearing how they treated the dying teenage King Edward VI. Edward was not the only one of Henry VIII's heirs who suffered at the hands of their carers. Mary and Elizabeth, his sisters, and Lady Jane Grey, his cousin, all had such wretched childhoods taht Cecil could have said with equal justice "God deliver us from the Parents, Step-parents and Lord Protectors" ... Weir provides immense satisfaction. She writes in a pacy, vivid style, engaging the heart as well as the mind. This, her fourth book on the Tudors, affirms her pre-eminence in the field.

The Mammoth Book of Great Detective Stories by Herbert Van Thal

As written by Rina...

This huge and unique volume contains four anthologies by Herbert Van Thal featuring 35 of the best detective stories ever told. The stories range in style and setting from the mean streets of Raymond Chandler's New York to the classic English whodunnit by Agatha Christie and offer an unmissable treat for detective fans.

The War of the Roses by Desmond Seward

As written by Rina...

During the amazing fifteenth-century bloodbath of the Wars of the Roses, three kings, a Prince of Wales, and eight royal, or semi-royal, dukes died in battle, bu murder or sudden death, together with a third of the peerage and countless gentry. At no other time did the English ruling class face ruin and destruction on such a murderous scale. A government spokesman told the House of Commons in 1475 the Duke of Buckingham, soon to be beheaded, claimed that war was never 'in none earthly nation so deadly and so pestilent as when it happeneth among us ... nor so cruel and so deadly foughten'.

Harvesting the Heart by Jodi Picoult

I was hoping a more gripping novel, coming from Jodi Picoult. After reading Salem Falls and 19 Minutes, I was imagining the couple in Harvesting the Heart in a court room fighting for who is right and who is wrong. I even imagined the baby dying in the hands of the father when the mom "left them to find herself".

But, its deeper then that. Its purely a book for self search people. Those who wants to find the true meaning of love, family, husband, wife, son.

I did enjoy the book, but not towards the end, unfortunately. Maybe, Im still the girl who loves court room drama.

Maybe my next book will be better... :)

Ratings: 5/10

Friday, 27 June 2008

The cupid effect

By: Dorothy Komsoon

It wasnt my cup of tea, unfortunately. I got totally lost as I wasnt sure where the book was going. Maybe I wasnt concentrating hard enough. But after reading My Best Friend's Girl by the same writer, I wasnt expecting a book which requires my full on concentration. I was expecting more of an easy read, straight to the point effect.

But Im sure tonnes would disagree with me. My colleague highly recommends this book. So, please ignore my rants if you're totally into this one.

what was this book really about?

*Internet sources said...*

There’s something magical about Ceri D’Altroy . . .

After leaving London to follow her heart's desire to become a psychology lecturer, Ceri D'Altroy vows to leave her matchmaking ways behind her for good. Unfortunately, all she seems to do is inspire the new people she meets to change their lives.

There’s Ed, who’s decided to declare his love to a woman who is way out of his league; Mel and Claudine, two long-term friends who are now tempted to start an illicit affair; and Gwen, the chain-smoking head of department who has a deep, dark secret she only wants to share with her new employee.

No-one who comes into contact with Ceri is ever the same again. Could this unsuspecting young woman be modern-day Cupid?

A delicious comedy about love, life and following your heart

Ratings: erm...for me it would be 3/10. Sorry!!!! But Im sure my colleague would have given it 10/10...

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Defrosting Charlotte Small

Author: Annabel Giles
Ratings: 5/10

I didn't quite fancy this book, to be honest. I was "introduced" to it by an old friend a couple of years back, and she told me that she will let me read her copy once she finished with it. But, we didn't quite get on after 6 months of being friends, and obviously she didn't want me to read her copy. (hahaha) So I bought a copy in a book fair, it was selling for cheap!

Whats it about? Yes, sorry about the long "history" about the book, but here's a short synopsis....

Its about a single mother, (Charlotte Small) and her life is falling apart...After flattening a friend's dog, carelessly losing not one job but three, and waving her daughter off to spend Christmas overseas, Charlotte hits the wall. Years of suppressed heartbreak and disappointment overwhelm her and the fine thread of sanity finally snaps. Consequently, having thrown the entire contents of her house onto the street, she's found by the police, (YUP!! she did it) and lying on her back under a Christmas tree with an empty bottle of Port and a half-eaten lump of Stilton. Charlotte needs to claw her way back from the brink and start again. But can she build a bigger, brighter, and better existence this time around?

She tries, and she tried hard. And she managed to turn a new leaf. But the author left us to decide if she succeeded, or will she fall again...

I took slightly longer to finish reading the book, so, for those who is expecting this book to be an "easy read", think again. Charlotte can actually "stress you out" a bit if your're one who gets into character when reading... *wink*

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Bad Influence by William Sutcliffe

I totally love British Writers. They are absolutely funny. This book is brilliant! Such an easy read. Its about Ben and Olly, who are best friends, and it's Ben who tells the story of what happened that autumn, starting right at the end of the summer holidays: how Carl moved into the street and everything changed forever.

I would say Carl is a total Physco, but being at the age where everything bad is a cool thing to do and being in a group led by a total baddy is deemed as honorable, Ben and Olly does nothing except tries to "fit in"....

Friday, 23 May 2008

Remember Me? by Sophie Kinsella

Author: Sophie Kinsella

I enjoyed reading this. Its one of the "easy reads" I reckoned. But, the ending is quite predictable, nevertheless, its one of the books you just have to read. The plot is slightly different from any of the other authors books, though similar character. Rich, pretty women with not so perfect life.

Author managed to bring me into character. I was imagining myself as Lexi, who was from one of the rough side in London, waking up in a hospital, with the most expensive handbag, top of the range hand phone and a husband. She remembers falling over knocking her head, in 2004, but she woke up in a hospital, after a car crash, and it was in fact, 2007.

So waking up and loosing 3 years of your life due to amnesia can be frustrating. There was more to it as well. Not only she has a Greek Goddess of a husband, she also found out she had an affair with Jon.

Read it and find out what happens...:) I will not ruin the book for you...

Ratings: 6/10

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

My Sister's Keeper, By Jodi Piccoult

It took me a little more then a week to complete the book, not because it wasn't interesting, but because I had tonnes of work to complete, my reading time was only in traffic jam and just before bed (which is only for about 10 mins before my eyes auto shuts -due to workload).
Jodi managed to bring all the emotions out in me. I was angry, sad, loving and hatred towards Anna's mother all at the same time (!)reading this book. But I understood why a mother would do such thing. Maybe when Im a mother, I will understand it even more...

Here's a short synopsis I found on the Internet...

Anna is not sick, but she might as well be. By age thirteen, she has undergone countless surgeries, transfusions, and shots so that her older sister, Kate, can somehow fight the leukemia that has plagued her since childhood. The product of preimplantation genetic diagnosis, Anna was conceived as a bone marrow match for Kate - a life and a role that she has never questioned… until now. Like most teenagers, Anna is beginning to question who she truly is. But unlike most teenagers, she has always been defined in terms of her sister - and so Anna makes a decision that for most would be unthinkable… a decision that will tear her family apart and have perhaps fatal consequences for the sister she loves. My Sister's Keeper examines what it means to be a good parent, a good sister, a good person. Is it morally correct to do whatever it takes to save a child's life… even if that means infringing upon the rights of another? Is it worth trying to discover who you really are, if that quest makes you like yourself less?

After reading this book, I wonder, if I was Kate, would I want my sister to go through what Anna went through? And if I was Anna, will I be strong enough to help a dying sister? And if I was a mum, would I do the same as what their mom did to help one dying child and risking of loosing another one of my children?

What would YOU do?

Ratings: 8/10

Sunday, 27 April 2008

The First Time By Joy Fielding

I read this book twice. Not because it's such a brilliant book, but because I forgot I read it. Reading it again, I also realised that it is one of the books which you wouldn't mind reading it again. Its not brilliant, inf act, it's excellent!

The plot:

Mattie Harte who is only 36 yrs old, discovered that her husband of sixteen years is cheating on her, again... and this time Jake decides to move out to be with his girlfriend, Honey (that's her name, I guess pun was intended by the writer). When Mattie discovers that she has Lou Gehrig's disease, Jake decides to move back home to help out until she dies. Doctor's have told her she has 6months to 1 year to live.
Mattie tried to move on without Jake, she even had an affair with someone who truly liked her, but she couldn't imagine dying alone in the end. So, Mattie and Jake made an arrangement: he will pretend to love her until she dies.

But Jake comes to find that he does, and he doesn't know how to deal with it. Their daughter (and the reason they got married) deals outwardly with her mother's illness, but begins looking for trouble, underage sex, suffering from a slight case of anorexia which causes more stress in the family.

The plot thickens when Mattie made her mother (whom she never got on with) promise to do the necessary when it was time.

I give this book 8/10.

The best part of the book for me was:

1) when Mattie and Jake went on a trip to Paris, Honey was also staying at the same hotel


2) when Mattie's mom could not keep her promise

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult

I finished reading this book in one week. (This is quite quick for me, since I was on a business trip and trying hard to concentrate on work back home and the work that was accumulating during my trip). I enjoyed it very very much.

Its about how both parents handle the fact that their child was sexually abused. (Yes, it's kinda morbid to think about it), but the writer have managed to get you into the book, imagining yourself else either the mother or the father of the 5 yr old.
The mother is an attorney, so it made it worse. She knew the "rules" and she knew how to get the perpetrator to be convicted. And she did. But then, on the first day of the court case, she killed him. In court, in front of her husband and her best friend, who happens to be a police officer.
The story then took a swift turn to the fact that SHE is no longer the victim, but the person whom she thought was the one who molested her child.
And she was wrong. She later found out that she has killed the wrong person.

Want to know the rest? I highly recommend this book.

Rating: 10/10!!!

Saturday, 9 February 2008

False Impression

Author: Jeffrey Archer

"The tale unfolds in New York, where Anna Petrescu is missing, presumed dead, after 9/11. She uses her new status to escape from America, only to be pursued across the world from Toronto to London, to Hong Kong, Tokyo and Bucharest as she tries to find answers to the following questions:

Why was an aristocratic old lady brutally murdered in her English country home the night before 9/11?

Why was a successful New York banker not surprised to receive a woman's left ear in the morning post?

Why did a top Manhattan lawyer only work for one client, but never charge a fee?

Why was an Olympic gymnast paid a million dollars an assignment, when she didn't have a bank account?

Why was an Honours graduate working as a temporary secretary after inheriting a fortune?

Why was an English Countess ready to kill the banker, the lawyer, and the gymnast, even if it meant spending the rest of her life in jail?

Why was a Japanese steel magnate happy to hand over $50,000,000 to a woman he had only met once?

Why was a senior FBI agent trying to work out what the connection was between these eight apparently innocent individuals?

It will take all the resources of the FBI and Interpol to work out the connection between this seemingly disparate cast of characters. The one thing they all have in common is Van Gogh's Self-Portrait with a Bandaged Ear. Full of twists and turns and heart-stopping intrigue, False Impression is guaranteed to pull you into its cleverly constructed web and not let you go until the final page"

Synopsis from Jeffrey Archer's Website.

The book was an easy read, it didnt take long for me to complete it, I never wanted to put it down. Literally read it in the loo, in traffic jam and during my lunch breaks.

Ratings: 8/10

Friday, 11 January 2008

Plain Truth- Jodi Picoult

Plain Truth is a fascinating portrait of Amish life rarely witnessed by those outside the faith. A young Amish teen hides a pregnancy, gives birth in secret, and then flatly denies it all when the baby's body is found, urban defense attorney Ellie Hathaway decides to defend her. But she finds herself caught in a clash of cultures with a people whose channels of justice are markedly different from her own… and discovers a place where circumstances are not always what they seem.

Ratings: 6/10

Nineteen Minutes- Jodi Picoult

In Sterling, New Hampshire, 17-year-old high school student Peter Houghton has endured years of verbal and physical abuse at the hands of classmates. His best friend, Josie Cormier, succumbed to peer pressure and now hangs out with the popular crowd that often instigates the harassment. One final incident of bullying sends Peter over the edge and leads him to commit an act of violence that forever changes the lives of Sterling’s residents.

Even those who were not inside the school that morning find their lives in an upheaval, including Alex Cormier. The superior court judge assigned to the Houghton case, Alex—whose daughter, Josie, witnessed the events that unfolded—must decide whether or not to step down. She’s torn between presiding over the biggest case of her career and knowing that doing so will cause an even wider chasm in her relationship with her emotionally fragile daughter. Josie, meanwhile, claims she can’t remember what happened in the last fatal minutes of Peter’s rampage. Or can she? And Peter’s parents, Lacy and Lewis Houghton, ceaselessly examine the past to see what they might have said or done to compel their son to such extremes. Nineteen Minutes also features the return of two of Jodi Picoult’s characters—defense attorney Jordan McAfee from The Pact and Salem Falls, and Patrick DuCharme, the intrepid detective introduced in Perfect Match.

Rich with psychological and social insight, Nineteen Minutes is a riveting, poignant, and thought-provoking novel that has at its center a haunting question.

Ratings: 10/10