Friday Face-Off – 14th September 2018

Friday Face-Off – 14th September 2018

The Friday Face-Off is a meme originally created by Books by Proxy and now hosted over at Lynn’s Books. The idea is to compare the different covers of a book with each week being a certain theme.

This weeks’ theme is a cover featuring a wolf: ‘He had killed man, the noblest game of all, and he had killed in the face of the law of club and fang.’

This weeks’ book is The Call of the Wild by Jack London.

Cover A:

wolf1

Cover B:

wolf2

Cover C:

wolf3

Cover D:

wolf4

Cover E:

wolf5

Cover F:

wolf6

Cover G:

7

Cover H:

wolf8

Cover I:

wolf9

Cover J:

wolf10

And the winner is… COVER I!

This week was a struggle again, but for a very different reason. There were a number of other covers that came close including covers A and J, and a very special mention goes to cover E which I loved. That being said, I edged it. The elegance of the wolf, howling at the full moon with a spectacular snowy mountainscape called to me.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my winner, or does one of the others work better for you? Let me know in the comments!

Next weeks’ theme is a book cover featuring clouds: ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud.’

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Dear Mr Pop Star by Derek Philpott & Dave Philpott

Dear Mr Pop Star by Derek Philpott & Dave Philpott

For more than a decade, Derek Philpott and his son, Dave, have been writing to pop stars from the 1960s to the 90s to take issue with the lyrics of some of their best-known songs.

But then, to their great surprise, the pop stars started writing back…

Dear Mr Pop Star contains 100 of Derek and Dave’s greatest hits, including correspondence with Katrina and the Waves, Tears for Fears, Squeeze, The Housemartins, Suzi Quatro, Devo, Deep Purple, Nik Kershaw, T Pau, Human League, Eurythmics, Wang Chung, EMF, Mott the Hoople, Heaven 17, Jesus Jones, Johnny Hates Jazz, Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine, Chesney Hawkes and many, many more.

I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the authors in exchange for an honest review.

Having read a lot of novels lately, the opportunity to read something easy to pick up and put down whenever a few minutes presented themselves to me was really appealing. And this collection of hilarious missives between the Messers Philpott and their pop music victims provided the perfect opportunity for this. A tome of around 100 letters and responses from a host of global music stars, Dear Mr Pop Star is the ideal choice for an easy reading light-hearted book.
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The letters range from the amusing to the amusingly absurd, but always questioning the lyrics of some of the most popular songs spanning the better part of three decades. In some of the scribblings the Philpott’s question the songs, dissecting chorus and verse for hidden meaning. In others, our intrepid music fans intentionally apply wrong meaning to songs to fantastic comedic effect. In other cases the authors have let their imaginations run completely wild amusing (or maybe infuriating) the artists. In all cases, the net result is some amusing correspondence between all parties.

There are a number of postcard thoughts aimed at other artists which in their own right make for entertaining interludes between the more substantial letters and their responses. While some of the to and fro was less entertaining to me, this is most likely down to my own ignorance of the artists in question and their respective bodies of work. With that said, this mirthful book contains plenty enough artists that I think almost any reader would be hard pressed not to find entertaining communique between the authors and musicians they are familiar with. To have had an opportunity to enjoy a light read that can be picked up for just a few moments at a time and find hilarity with in the majority of the pages is something I don’t often get given my usual leaning to a dark novel made this a most welcome and funny diversion!

My rating:
goodread

Friday Face-Off – 7th September 2018

Friday Face-Off – 7th September 2018

The Friday Face-Off is a meme originally created by Books by Proxy and now hosted over at Lynn’s Books. The idea is to compare the different covers of a book with each week being a certain theme.

This weeks’ theme is a cover featuring a queen: ‘Mirror, Mirror on the wall…’

This weeks’ book is The Snow Queen by Joan D. Vigne.

Cover A:

queen1

Cover B:

queen2

Cover C:

queen3

Cover D:

queen4

Cover E:

queen5

Cover F:

queen6

Cover G:

queen7

And the winner is… COVER A!

I struggled a bit more this week. None of the covers really inspired me or caught my eye. Cover A was the nearest I cam to something that interested me. The figure is intriguing, along with the island in the background.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my winner, or does one of the others work better for you? Let me know in the comments!

Next weeks’ theme is a book cover featuring a wolf: ‘He had killed man, the noblest game of all, and he had killed in the face of the law of club and fang.’

Friday Face-Off – 31st August 2018

Friday Face-Off – 31st August 2018

The Friday Face-Off is a meme originally created by Books by Proxy and now hosted over at Lynn’s Books. The idea is to compare the different covers of a book with each week being a certain theme.

This weeks’ theme is a cover featuring goblins or dwarves: ‘Come buy our orchard fruits, Come buy, come buy.’

This weeks’ book is Goblin Quest by Jim C. Hines.

Cover A:

goblin1

Cover B:

goblin7

Cover C:

graal_gobelin.indd

Cover D:

goblin5

Cover E:

goblin4

Cover F:

goblin3

Cover G:

goblin2

And the winner is… COVER D!

This was a hands-down winner for me this week. It felt typically-fantasy in its style with an almost noble warrior goblin and the dragon.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my winner, or does one of the others work better for you? Let me know in the comments!

Next weeks’ theme is a book cover featuring a queen: ‘Mirror, Mirror on the wall.”

Friday Face-Off – 24th August 2018

Friday Face-Off – 24th August 2018

The Friday Face-Off is a meme originally created by Books by Proxy and now hosted over at Lynn’s Books. The idea is to compare the different covers of a book with each week being a certain theme.

This weeks’ theme is a cover with a title featuring the word legend: ‘To be a legend, you’ve either got to be dead, or excessively old!’

This week I have gone with The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving.

Cover A:

legend1

Cover B:

legend2

Cover C:

legend3

Cover D:

legend4

Cover E:

legend5

Cover F:

legend6

Cover G:

legend7

Cover H:

legend8

And the winner is… COVER H!

This particular cover is dark, moody and atmospheric. I love the silhouette of the legendary headless horseman and the enormous moon in the background.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my winner, or does one of the others work better for you? Let me know in the comments!

Next weeks’ theme is a book cover featuring goblins or dwarves: ‘Come buy our orchard fruits, Come buy, come buy.’

The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney

The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney

Please make a list of every possession you consider essential to your life.

The request seems odd, even intrusive – and for the two women who answer, the consequences are devastating.

Emma

Reeling from a traumatic break-in, Emma wants a new place to live. But none of the apartments she sees are affordable or feel safe. Until One Folgate Street. The house is an architectural masterpiece: a minimalist design of pale stone, plate glass, and soaring ceilings. But there are rules. The enigmatic architect who designed the house retains full control: no books, no throw pillows, no photos or clutter or personal effects of any kind. The space is intended to transform its occupant – and it does.

Jane

After a personal tragedy, Jane needs a fresh start. When she finds One Folgate Street, she is instantly drawn to the space – and to its aloof but seductive creator. Moving in, Jane soon learns about the untimely death of the home’s previous tenant, a woman similar to Jane in age and appearance. As Jane tries to untangle truth from lies, she unwittingly follows the same patterns, makes the same choices, crosses paths with the same people, and experiences the same terror as the girl before.

I won a copy of this book as part of a competition.

The Girl Before offers up a psychological thriller with a different direction from the norm. Told from the perspective of our two protagonists – Emma and Jane, the reader is taken on a journey through their lives. Two women with troubled pasts for very different reasons, Emma and Jane are both seeking new homes to move on and rebuild their lives. Written in a past and present format, following the narratives of Emma, the girl before, and Jane in the present in a parallel style as they both progress through a similar story.
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Seeking somewhere new to live that ticks all their requirements – safe and secure for Emma, survivor of a violent home break-in, away from schools with no reminders of children for Jane who is still coming to terms with the stillbirth of her daughter – is proving difficult for both women. That is until the estate agents loosely mention a house available for a low rental price, pristine, pure, technologically advanced, an architectural masterpiece. Neither woman can resist enquiring further about this piece of heaven, a second chance for them. But this property brings a huge catch.

The owner and architect, a mysteries man with a sad history of his own, has very exacting standards and almost overbearing list of rules that any prospective tenant must agree to abide by. And then, there is the application process. Nothing like the usual, an enormous questionnaire needs to be filled out as part of the process asking all sorts of seemingly benign questions. But what price for the perfect home? But not all is rosey at One Folgate Street, a property with a host of secrets and skeletons in the closets.

J.P. Delaney has created a piece of work in The Girl Before that really grabs you by the collar and drags you in from the start. The alternation between a portion of Emma’s story (the past) and then the following chapter flipping to the corresponding part of Jane’s story (the present) could so easily have fallen down before things started if not done well, confusing the reader. I was so thrilled to discover that Delaney has got this so right – as a reader I felt like I could connect the dots between the two stories. As with many of the psychological thrillers I have read, The Girl Before is dark, with secrets waiting to be uncovered and more twists and turns than a Formula One circuit. I was sure there was going to be some curve balls and was almost ready for it, yet I still didn’t see the ending that came – something that makes this book a real winner for me.

My rating:
goodread

Friday Face-Off – 17th August 2018

Friday Face-Off – 17th August 2018

The Friday Face-Off is a meme originally created by Books by Proxy and now hosted over at Lynn’s Books. The idea is to compare the different covers of a book with each week being a certain theme.

This weeks’ theme is a cover with cover with a starry sky: ‘Moonlight drowns out all but the brightest stars.’

This week I have gone with The Comet Seekers by Helen Sedgwick.

Cover A:

starrysky1

Cover B:

starrysky2

Cover C:

starrysky3

Cover D:

starrysky4

And the winner is… COVER A!

I love the stylised design in this cover. It almost reminds me of the nautical and astronomical maps of old.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree with my winner, or does one of the others work better for you? Let me know in the comments!

Next weeks’ theme is a book cover with a title featuring the word legend: ‘To be a legend, you’ve either got to be dead, or excessively old!’