The Big Book Review Top 100 Books…. and a few more

14Mar/101

The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro

Kazuo Ishiguro - The Remains of the DayTop 100 Book: Number 84
Star Rating:: ***1/2

Quick Review::
One of Kazuo Ishiguro’s most famous works, The Remains of The Day is an interesting novel about Stevens, a very creditable English butler reliving his life through this book in order to clarify its meaning to himself.

The book begins with Stevens taking a holiday from his current employer and during his travels he tells the tales of his past with focus on particular characters including the lovely Miss Kenton with whom he was never able to declare his affections towards.

I won’t go too much more into the story but this gives you a general picture of the storyline and the plot it doesn’t stray much from the line. So where do I sit... well it isn’t my kind of thing! I can understand completely why it is in the top 100, it is totally different from any other book I have ever read, but it just didn’t grip me, I found myself getting too excited as the end was approaching and I could move onto something else.

This is now a very famous movie starring Anthony Hopkins and I haven’t yet got round to watching this film. From what I have heard it is pretty good! So my low down, I would give this book a read so you can say “done that” but I wouldn’t go out of your way to make it your life priority there are plenty of better books in the sea in my opinion!

16Dec/090

The Magicians – Lev Grossman

The Magicians - Lev Grossman

The Magicians - Lev Grossman

Top 100 Book: Not a top 100 book

Star Rating:: ***1/2

Quick Review:: To all my friends I have constantly described this book as a dark Harry Potter meets Narnia and from scouring the web it appears others have supported my view. The Magicians tells the story of young Quentin Coldwater who stumbles across the magical school of Brakebills (your Hogwarts) unintentionally when he turns up for his Princeton interview to find his examiner dead and a mysterious envelope bearing his name.

Everything changes once Quentin immerses himself in the life of a true magician love, death, pain, laughter, lust and hard work lay before him and the book concerns itself with his tales at Brakebills and his life after it.

My opinion, I am on the fence on this one! There were elements I loved, and elements I loathed, I felt that the author tried to cover too many storylines with this one, not that it was difficult to follow, I think I found some areas rushed and rather shallow. It may have served better as two books or a trilogy covering Quentin’s Brakebill days and his life after.

9Dec/090

The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger

The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger

Top 100 Book: Number 19

Star Rating:: ***

Quick Review:: Now a successful film the Time Traveler's wife is the story of Henry and Clare. Henry has a condition which means that he travels through time regularly and is unable to control it so he goes forward and backwards without any control! I likened it to Journeyman if anyone has seen it. This book tells the story of Clare and Henry in a diary style as they meet at various points through Henry's travels.

A wonderful concept which would have been more highly recommended if it had been around 200 pages less. It got a little repetitive and seemed to keep going over the same stories again and again. The beginning and the end were very well written, lose some of the mindless middle dribble and it would have been a much more enjoyable read.

Detailed Review:: *SLIGHT PLOT SPOILERS*

9Jul/090

The Brief History of The Dead – Kevin Brockmeier

The Brief History of The Dead - Kevin Bockmeier

The Brief History of The Dead - Kevin Bockmeier

Recommended by :: Yet another personal choice

Star Rating:: *** 1/2

Quick Review::

Very clever novel by Kevin Brockmeier, this slightly comforting story is split into two parts. We follow the inhabitants of 'the city' a place people go when they die and also the story of a young traveller named Laura Byrd we quickly see these two woven together as we discover just how much Laura is impacting on the city and its inhabitants. Its a good novel but the conclusion leaves you wanting more.........

Detailed Review:: *SLIGHT PLOT SPOILERS*

21Dec/081

The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks

The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks

The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks

Top 100 Book :: Number 93 recommended by Steven F

Star Rating:: *** 1/2

Quick Review::

Iain Banks controversial debut highlights the day to day activities of Frank Cauldhame. Frank is no normal 16 year old boy his stories throughout the book contain violence, horror and pure grotesque scenes. But don’t let this put you off, behind the horror and violence is a very confused young man.

Detailed Review:: *SLIGHT PLOT SPOILERS*