|One of my reading spots|
I love sharing great books and am always hunting down books that I’ve lent to one friend or another. These are some favourites from my bookshelf – books that I owe many pleasurable hours. These are not my top 5 books of any genre but they all have gripping stories and are well written. I hope you enjoy them as much I did.
Bloke-Lit at its very best. This is a coming-of-age story with a difference. Cool commitment-shy Will pretends to be a single parent to meet women. Through a comical chain of events he ends up mentoring Marcus, 11 and struggling with being a misfit at school. This witty novel about how both learn to grow up is perceptive, engaging and thoroughly enjoyable.
The elegant, thought provoking short stories in Arranged Marriage chart the experience of a handful of very different Indian women who have moved to the US. They are evocative, inventive and absorbing. Like the best short stories, these intrigue, surprise and leave you wanting more.
The Case of the Missing Servant by Tarquin Hall
This is one of the best stories I’ve read in a long time. It’s a funny, brilliantly plotted whodunit set in Delhi. If you’ve lived in India or Pakistan, you’ll recognise and enjoy the pukka details of privileged life in contemporary South Asia. Shrewd, shabby sleuth Vish Puri is a fabulous comic creation and the plot is a real page-turner. Pure entertainment.
Fantasy has always been one of my favourite genres. Tamora Pierce’s young adult fiction set in a medieval world features strong female characters and action-packed plots. Trickster’s Choice is one of her best novels. This is the first of two novels about Alianne, a spymaster’s daughter who ends up caught up in a revolution. The two books work well as a standalone duology so it doesn’t matter if you haven’t read other books in the series, though you may end up wanting to read them all.
Best-selling Irish author Maeve Binchy wrote wise, heart-warming books that draw the reader in. Her books, however, are far from typical chick-lit. Well plotted and compelling, they deal with the themes of relationships and betrayal particularly well. Scarlet Feather is one of her best. It tells the story of Cathy Scarlet and Tom Feather, who met at college and set up a catering firm together. While their business prospers, their personal lives begin to fall apart. Binchy’s portrayal of how people can see the same situation very differently is riveting. I was literally up all night with this book, finishing it at 6 am.