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cook*create*read: April 2013

Friday, April 26, 2013

Book Review!

Like This For Ever by S. J. Bolton
Publisher:  Random House UK
Publication Date:  11 April 2013
My Rating:  3/5

Keep telling yourself it's only fiction... As you read this heart-hammering thriller from the queen of London's crime scene. 

Bright red. Like rose petals. Or rubies. Or balloons. Little red droplets.

Barney knows the killer will strike again soon. The victim will be another boy, just like him. He will drain the body of blood, and leave it on a Thames beach. There will be no clues for detectives Dana Tulloch and Mark Joesbury to find. There will be no warning about who will be next. There will be no good reason for Lacey Flint to become involved ... And no chance that she can stay away.

Keep telling yourself it''s only fiction.

This is the third instalment in the Lacey Flint series, and I was very excited to read it.  The first two books were gripping psychological thrillers, and I had high hopes for more of the same.  Unfortunately, it didn't quite live up to my high expectations.  The first half of the book seems to drag and failed to capture my attention (I wouldn't describe it as an "unputdownable page turner"), but the second half does pick up speed and rolls along much more quickly than the first.  Lacey is a very interesting character, and I like the awkward relationship between her and Joesbury, but I felt there was not enough Lacey in this instalment.  Once again, one of Lacey's colleagues is suspicious that she is actually the killer, and I found this 'reprise' a little tiresome.

Having said all that, there are some great twists and turns in the story, and it is ultimately a very good read.  It sets things up quite nicely for further instalments and I will now doubt find myself reading the next in the series!  I just hope the author shakes things up a bit and doesn't cast Lacey as the suspect next time!

Thank you to NetGalley for the opportunity to review this book.

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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Swish swish!

The sun is shining and it is a very welcome 18C here today!

I finally got round to finishing off my first little collaged mermaid ... here she is in all her blue glory!  What you can't see is that she has a final coating of shimmery blue watercolour over her scales, and her crown is made from sparkly stickles ... I think she's cute :0

I'm also doing another course that the moment. The wonderfully inspirational Jeanne Oliver is running an amazing 4 week course called The Journey of Letting Go.  The first week has been very special!  Uplifting discussion videos from Jeanne along with loads of arty gorgeous goodness!  Amongst other things, I made a coptic bound journal from watercolour paper and canvas for the cover.  This was a tricky little bugger, taking three attempts to actually get it right (*note to self* don't attempt coptic binding at midnight!), and clearly my technique needs some work, but I love it! I went large for this one, the journal is A4 sized.

Happy Sunday! Hope the sun is shining where you are :)

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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Mermaid Circus part 1

I think this is going to be fun! When I saw the first video, my heart kind of sank a little.  I'm not a huge fan of shaped journals or books, and the first project is a book in the shape of mermaids.  I nearly ignored the first lesson but I decided in the end to go with it.  I made my book smaller than suggested, and it really is quite cute and dinky!  We'll see how it progresses ...

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Monday, April 08, 2013

I'm running away!

To the Mermaid Circus!  Very excited to be taking this class with the super creative Jane Davenport and uber talented Teesha Moore!

Sunday, April 07, 2013

A whole journal!

I can't believe it - I have finally completed a whole journal from start to finish!  I'm not a very organised art journaller, and tend to flit from one book to the next, starting a new one on a whim without finishing the previous one.  I have never actually filled every page in a journal ... until now!  Hurrah!

I made this journal based on one of Kelly Kilmer's online classes - I think it was the Journey Within class.  I started it in November 2012 and finished it today!  I had a long period of a couple of months where I did not journalling whatsoever in any journal (not unusual for me), so I'm pretty pleased with myself for getting this done!

Wanna see?!

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Thursday, April 04, 2013

Review: The Village by Nikita Lalwani

The Village by Nikita Lalwani
Publisher: Random House
Publication Date:  9 July 2013
My Rating:  3/5

The Village follows a small BBC film crew as they attempt to make a documentary about an open prison in India, where the inmates (who are all guilty of murder) live with their families and are allowed to work outside the confines of the prison.  The scene is set in the opening pages beautifully, with vivid descriptions of the hot, dusty village.  The snapshots and vignettes of village life are fascinating and intriguing. 

As the story develops, the main characters reveal themselves to be fairly unlikeable.  Ray, the main protaganist, has some strong moral and ethical beliefs, but fails to make herself heard above the outspoken Serena, and the attempt to redeem herself in the conclusion feels rushed and anti-climactic.  

I had high hopes for this storyline.  The concept of an open prison built on trust is an interesting premise, and the ethical dilemmas encountered by the film crew are real and troubling.  It is well-written but tends to skim the surface rather than delve deeper into the issues, resulting in a somewhat underwhelming though thought provoking novel.  

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