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Patrick Ness in easons

As you may remember, last year I came across a series of books by Patrick Ness, The Chaos Walking trilogy. Which I loved. They even made me cry they were so good. And when I spotted that he was going to write a book based on an idea by Siobhan Dowd I thought, oh, that sounds fascinating. And then I saw the cover, and thought “ooooohhh that looks veeeery interesting”.

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The absolute Sandman vol. 1 by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

Where do you start when trying to review a collection like this? I really have no idea. I was going to give up before I even began; admit defeat without letting anyone know about it, but I decided, what the hell, lets give it a go.

I first read some of Gaiman’s Sandman series years and years ago. Like a genius I started with A Doll’s House rather than at the beginning, but I soon realised my mistake and retraced my steps. The first few issues never really grabbed me. But they begin the story, so you do need to start there, and then, even if you dislike them, persevere for a little while longer. Because, lets face it, the character of Morpheus isn’t really that likeable. He is an arrogant ass. But his story is interesting. And the stories and places Gaiman gets to explore through the Sandman and his sibling Endless characters are fascinating. If you like comics and myths then you should give this a go.

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Monsters of men by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

Author: Patrick Ness ; Bk 3 in Chaos Walking trilogy.
The final book in a series can often be a tough one to read and enjoy. On the one hand you want it to end happily ever after for the characters. Especially is you are at all invested in them. But at the same time you also want it to be truthful. By which I mean you don’t want the author to duck the difficult decisions and have some quick get out of jail clause. And I’m happy to say that Ness manages it all, with some brilliant writing along the way.

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The good man Jesus and the scoundrel Christ by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

by Philip Pullman

The back of the edition of this that I read has only the words: This is a story. Interesting. Is that because the publisher’s don’t want to offend the ultra religious in the Christian world. Or is it a message from the author that the life of Jesus is a story. That the bible is a story.

Pullman, of course, is known for his ever so slightly controversial views on religion, he has used them in his fiction before. In that case it involved a worn-out god, and power-hungry angels. Here he revisits the myth:”(is a myth a religion we dont believe in?)”: of Jesus Christ and weaves a new story out of it.

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Whose body? by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

The body of a stout man is found in a bathroom, naked but for a gold pince-nez. At the same time, a prominent banker goes missing. Is the dead man the missing Mr. Levy? And if so, how did he manage to end up in Mr. Thipps’ bathroom? And was he murdered?

This is the first book Sayers wrote to feature Lord Peter Wimsey. He is the second son of an ancient English house, his elder brother is the Duke of Denver. And his hobby is criminology. Already he has solved the case of some missing emeralds, now he is on two cases at once; to find the missing Levy & to figure out the who, why and where concerning the mystery body.

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Wedlock by

Default fox is the defaults - Image taken from page 40 of 'Travels in Africa during the years 1875-1878 (1879-1883-1882-1886) ... from The British Library

Mary Eleanor Bowes was born in 1749. Her father was extremely wealthy and, unusually for the time, had her well educated. A most eligible young woman, not least because she was the richest heiress in C18th Britain. Her first wedding was nothing unusual for the time. Pretty loveless and to an older man it wasn’t a romantic love match. Her second, to a dashing young soldier, was. Mary Eleanor probably hadn’t intended to marry Andrew Robinson Stoney, but upon hearing that he had fought a duel for her honour and was laying on his deathbed wishing for nothing but her hand in marriage… well, who could resist that romance!

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