I have decided to scrap the idea of doing monthly wrap-ups of books as there will be months I read a lot and few dry spells. So, I came up with a new idea… I will post reviews of books once I finish reading five books. I have decided to read 52 books this year and honestly I am not to a great start. But hey, the year is just beginning.
So, here are my five recent reads –
Rating – 4 Stars
Hercule Poirot and Agatha Christie make awesome travelling companions on long road trips is something I discovered last year. So, when we began our Kerala road trip in the beginning of the year, I loaded up our pen drive with a few Christie novels. I and my husband finally decided on Five Little Pigs as the burb sounded interesting. A young woman named Carla visits Hercule Poirot asking him to investigate a 16 year old case, where her mother was accused of murdering her husband by poising. Poirot is initially reluctant but later accepts due to his thirst for finding out the truth.
The book is very different from the rest of the novels as Poirot has no crime scene or clues to investigate. All he has to rely are on the testimonies of the Five Little Pigs present during the unfateful day. And this is what makes this book one of Agatha Christie’s best. This novel reads more like a psychological thriller. The psychological sketch of the five characters and their testimonies of the events that occurred on that day ultimately revel the truth.
This book is crafty and perfectly demonstrates Poirot’s contention that it is possible to solve a mystery purely by reflecting upon the facts of the case and not the clues.
Rating – 2.5 Stars
Last year this book was everywhere and everyone was talking about. Though the book mildly interested me, it wasn’t on top of my TBR pile. This was until I saw Twinkle Khanna on Koffee with Karan. I fell in love with her wit, satires and tongue-in-cheek humor. If she could make me laugh numerous times in just a 40 minute episode, I assumed that I would be in for a treat while reading her book that gives us snippets and funny anecdotes from her life. And honestly, I did enjoy the read. It was mildly entertaining and chuckle inducing and that was it. Twinkle Khanna is sassy and sarcastic and I did put down this book as her fan but the book lacked the punch and humor I was hoping for. Her self-effacing nature and the ability to laugh at herself are a breath of fresh air, especially since she is a star wife. The book is a quick read and entertaining but nothing groundbreaking, unfortunately. But I definitely will check out her other works.
Rating – 3.5 Stars
I have been a Gillian Flynn fan even before the whole Gone Girl phenomenon. Nobody manages to give me creeps like Flynn does. Even this novella, not more than 100 pages, is creepy as hell. The novella starts off strong and grips you from the word go and the middle portion just pushes the standard up a notch and sets up beautifully for the crescendo. If I have any complaint it’s with the ending. It was one too many twists for my liking. I am one of those rare people who is okay with an ambiguous ending but here I was left unsatisfied. Still it’s an eerie read that keeps you guessing till the end. I wish Flynn comes out with a full-fledged novel soon… real soon.
Rating – 3 Stars
This book is not the best Christie book. I could guess the killer in the middle of the book but kept reading the book in hopes that Queen of Mystery might pull out an Ace from up her sleeve. But Alas! That was not the case with Dumb Witness. Though the characters were interesting and writing of Christie is as brilliant as ever, the story lacked the mystery and intrigue that usually go hand in hand with Agatha Christie novel. Saying that it’s not a bad book and it passes your time just fine. It’s just that my standards for Agatha Christie are high.
Rating – 5 Stars
People, say hello to my favourite YA fantasy. There was so much of hype surrounding this book that I was sure that it could never be as good as people have hyped it to be. But the blurb sounded interesting and the fact that it was a YA fantasy (a genre that always leaves me a bit dissatisfied) made me pick the book up. And boy, am I glad.
Though the book is well rounded and perfect in all the three aspects – world building, characters and writing, it’s the characters that the author churned out that elevate the book to a whole new level. In lesser hands the characters might have come across as unlikable thugs. But Leigh Bardugo enriched these characters by adding multiple layers to them. You understand them, love them and root for them. Each one of the six characters is charming and impressive. My favourites are Kaz, Inej and Nina.
This book is dark, action-packed, beautifully written with memorable characters. Highly recommend reading this one.