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Nicci French is actually a writing partnership of Nicci Gerrard and Sean French. I was given this book sometime back, and I just hadn't got around to reading it before. It's a good job I chose the Yuletide period to read it, as once I picked it up...I was very reluctant to put it down. The book is very fast paced, the whole story taking place within one day, but you naturally put a book down at the end of a chapter, which this book does not have.
Giving you the bumf from the jacket does not do this novel justice.
To sum up, it is Nina's 40th birthday, she and her two children and her new partner are due to fly to Florida for Xmas. However, Nina's car develops a rattle, so she gets a friend to have a quick look at it, as she returns home she is faced , whilst trying to pack for a holiday, an impromptu surprise birthday party. Her daughter who has planned the party has not returned home from her sleepover although excited about the holiday. Nina becomes increasingly worried and reports her daughter missing, but they do not take it seriously at first.
The whole situation rapidly escalates for Nina, whilst the police treat it as just another teenager having a strop at their parents.
The novel is very well written and the suspense builds and builds. You find yourself having sympathy for Nina who is sure that Charlie, her daughter is in some sort of danger.
A brilliant fast paced book, but unless you have time to spare, you might find yourself missing appointments as you read, "just one more page"

This is the second of Kate Mosse's books set in the south of France, apparently a trilogy, but other than location I couldn't see the link between this and Labyrinth. (The third book is due for publication in 2012.) It is however about two sets of characters who turn out to be linked through shared family, although the main modern day character does not know this at the outset.It has mystery, suspense and murder that are all neatly tied up at the end of the novel.

I picked this up thinking it was a novel. Upon reading it I found it was in fact an account of a "village" cricket team who play cricket around the globe. I have never heard of them, but I think a cricket lover will have done.
The story is written by Harry, the captain of the team, he relates the "highlights" of the Captain Scott XIs 20-odd year history. It all starting off with him and some friends wanting to play cricket, because they never had, and then being told they couldn't join in if they had never played. Not to be defeated by this, the group of true amateurs set up their own team, and arrange their own matches, usually getting soundly thrashed, but still enjoying themselves.
I liked the book, I think someone who understood cricket would like it more.

Since I last posted, I have only read two books,The Little Friend by Donna Tartt and Passion by Jude Morgan.
The first, is last etc....
Passion follows the lives of four women at the start of the 19th Century, women who through their own endeavours, or those of the men they are connected, with will become famous, or infamous.
Byron, Coleridge, Keats and Shelley are the male characters , but their female counterparts, and their lives are the main focus of this novel.
Mary Shelley, Lady Caroline Lamb, are both names most have heard of, there is also Augusta Leigh...Byron's half-sister and Fanny Brawne.
I could not quite figure who Fanny Brawne was connected in the male characters...but this apart the novel was very engaging
I have read better...but it does hit the point I think Jude Morgan was making..he was, I think, trying to make people aware that some of our famous writers/poets...had the backing and inspiration from some very strong minded, clever women.
As an aside, Wordsworth, and his sister are mentioned, in passing.....I would say that they don't get a terribly good "press" from this novel.

The Little Friend by Donna Tartt
I can only assume that this novel was set in the 80s at some point, maybe the late 70s If there was a bench point at some stage, I missed it.
Saying that I loved the book. Harriet has a lot to put up with. Her elder brother was murdered when she was only a baby, her father then took a job miles away...sending money for up-keep regularly, but to all intents and purposes, he left shortly after his only son was murdered. Harriet's Mum became unhinged by Robin's death, he elder sister was not old enough to understand what had happened and is at the time of the novel, a vapid sleepy teenager.
Harriet is determined to find out what happened to Robin, and who murdered him, even though she was under a year old at the time. She takes to heart comments from unreliable witnesses and becomes obsessed with finding Robin's murderer and bringing them to justice. Her loyal friend "Hely" does his best to stand by her.
The end of the novel leaves some thing open for further exploration.
I liked most of this book, but was a little put off by the ending/non-ending.....leaving the stage open for a follow up by Donna Tartt.
I seriously hope there is another novel about Harriet, as I feel The Little Friend left many things unanswered

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