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Welcome to Even Butterflies Think

Hey! Welcome to Even Butterflies Think.  I'm Jazz, an avid book reader and one of the lucky people in the world working in my ideal ca...

Saturday, 31 December 2011

100 Books In 2011 Reading Challenge - My Progress

Earlier in the year I joined Book Chick City's 100 Books in a Year 2011 Reading Challenge because I felt like I needed the motivation to get me reading and blogging a lot more. The challenge is an awesome one, and I admire any and everyone who is able to complete it, or even get close. However, for me, it did not go very well.

When I entered the challenge it was because I was determined to improve my blog, give it more attention, and despite being quite an ambitious challenge - it seemed like exactly what I needed to motivate myself. But I was wrong.

Challenges can be such good motivators and really help you along with your reading, but you have to choose the ones that are appropriate for you and that are truly helpful. My issue is not with reading, it is with blogging - put simply, I do not do as much on my blog as I would like, and I have an awful habit of finishing a book and starting another and then never getting around to writing the review for the previous, until I end up with 10 books read but no reviews. As I spend all day in front of a computer, mostly online, it means that in the evenings I prefer to kick back and read rather than blog. Getting the right balance is important this year. Also, while I can read fast if I need to, I do not necessarily read very fast when reading for pure pleasure. Therefore, challenging myself to read such a large number of books within the year was playing into my weaknesses rather than focusing on what I really wanted to do.

Review: Dr Yes by Colin Bateman

Dr. Yes
by ' Bateman
Published by Headline
ISBN 9780755378616 (Paperback)

Buy Dr. Yes from Headline
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Visit Bateman's website
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Dr Yes is the first novel that I have read by Bateman, and I cannot believe that I had not read one of his novels before, because it is pure genius! Seriously, it is so good, so witty, and different to other crime fiction books I have read. Here is the blurb:

You don't say no to Dr. Yes, the charismatic plastic surgeon on the fast track to fame and fortune. But when the wife of obscure and paranoid crime writer Augustine Wogan disappears shortly after entering his exclusive clinic, the Small Bookseller with No Name is persuaded to investigate. As fatherhood approaches, our intrepid hero is interested only in a quick buck and the chance to exploit a neglected writer, but he soon finds himself up to his neck in murder, make-up and madness - and face to face with the most gruesome serial killer since the last one.

I could tell you what I love about this book in a single word: everything. However, that would make for a really dull and lazy review, so I will pick out a few elements that really stand out.

Friday, 30 December 2011

Review: Pariah by David Jackson

by David Jackson
Published by Macmillan, March 2011
ISBN 9780330530569

Buy Pariah from Pan Macmillan
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Visit David Jackson's website
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Pariah is the debut novel from David Jackson. It is written like a Hollywood movie whilst combining the overall feel and structure of hit US crime dramas like CSI, Criminal Minds or Law and Order. So, if you like a good action movie or crime drama, you'll want to give this book a try.

Here is the blurb:

It’s a bad enough day for NYPD detective Callum Doyle when his cop partner is murdered. It’s about to get a hell of a lot worse . . .

When the dead man’s replacement is also brutally killed, suspicion falls on Doyle himself. Then he receives an anonymous message. This is just the beginning, it says. Anyone he gets close to will die – and that includes Doyle’s own family. The only way to keep them alive is to stay away. For good.

Doyle is desperate to find out who is responsible, but when his every move puts others in danger he is forced to back off. With the investigation getting nowhere and his isolation deepening, Doyle has to ask himself an uncomfortable question: just how low is he prepared to sink in order to get his life back?

Review: Random by Craig Robertson

by Craig Roberston
Published by Simon and Schuster UK, February 2011
ISBN: 9781847398819

Generally speaking I do tend to avoid books written from the viewpoint of the criminal, especially when it relates to cold-blooded murder. This is because I generally have no real desire to put myself in the shoes of the murderer or sympathise with them. It is the kind of moral dilemma I aim to avoid.

However, I am glad that I read Random by Craig Robertson. It was so well-written, so believable and ultimately, so tragic that I could not help but fall in love with it. And every so often forcing yourself to face your own sense of moral judgement is probably good for the soul.

Here is the synopsis:

Glasgow is being terrorised by a murderer the media have nicknamed ‘The Cutter’. But how do you catch a serial killer when even he doesn’t know who’s next?...

Telling the story in his own words, The Cutter reveals the method, and motives, that drive him to kill again and again, in an escalating spree that leaves DS Rachel Narey and her team mystified.