Posted in My book problem, Weekly Posts

Musing Monday (September 16)


Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week… It is hosted by

• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

My Monday ramble is about the number of books I own and haven’t read. My thoughts turned to organising my bookshelves when I saw that there was a book challenge from to clean out your e-reader.

I have spent a good portion of my weekend feeling organising, feeling guilty and so here is a post part confession and part dealing with my problem!


I have lots of books on my kindle that haven’t been read and sorted by genre only
I have no idea how much I paid or what they cost now
I also have books on my bookshelves, in cupboards, bags and other hidey holes that remain unread
I keep buying more kindle books
I keep buying more physical books
Until today I couldn’t face up to the size of my problem

Starting on Saturday I loaded an excel spread sheet and set to work to find out the magnitude of books to be read.

The verdict I have 48 unread kindle books dating back to October 2010
I have 32 unread physical books dating back to I really don’t know
The kindle books would cost £149.22 at today’s prices (good news is I got them for £67.33)

Realistically these 80 books will take me until the end of July 2014 if I don’t read anything else. That would mean no ARC’s and no author reviews; too sad to contemplate. Instead I have taken a few measures to tackle the problem as a compromise.

I have signed up to clean out your e-reader challenge and identified 9 books to be read in November

Clean out your e-reader Challenge
Click here to join up too

I have also sorted out 11 of the physical books and put them on one shelf in the bedroom. These I will read before the end of the year.

Pictures books to read

The next step is to exercise some willpower. I am not going to stop reading blogs and coming across books I want to read but I can’t buy every book.


I will not order anything else from my TBR, not even if they are in the daily deal, identified as a price drop on or for any other reason than I am going to read them within the next couple of days.

I will start sorting out the TBR over the next week or so and removing books I don’t really want to avoid the price drop temptation.
I will make proper notes on why I want a book so that I can review these lists regularly.

As penance I will listen to any other book confessions that need to be made by other’s with a similar affliction.

I have two bags of books to donate to the charity shop so someone else can enjoy them.

bags of books

Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

The Carrier – Sophie Hannah

Psychological Thriller 3*'s
Psychological Thriller

I have read all Sophie Hannah’s books and having turned the final page I’m left with the feeling that I’m not clever enough to have ‘got it’ for this one.

Tim Breary is in prison for killing his wife, an invalid who is confined to bed and silence due to a stroke, but he won’t give the local police; Simon Waterhouse, Sam, Charlie, Proust etc. a reason why. As always these characters from the series have their own hang-ups and point scoring to be getting on with alongside solving the mystery. To add to these characters we have a household all backing Tim Breary’s account of the murder including the care assistant Lauren.

Sophie Hannah creates excellent puzzles and the main reason for not awarding this book less than 3 stars is that the interplay and teasing out of human behaviour is fantastic, she is clearly fascinated by the human psyche. There are some truly horrible characters but sadly I have come across the aspects of behaviour that make them so appalling. This is what the author convey so well in my opinion. On the whole we manage difficult people we meet to minimise offence while she gives us a glimpse of what the long-term effect can be. The large amount of poetry used to tell the story has detracted from my enjoyment as it isn’t something that appeals to me and has contributed to the feeling that I have missed something important.

The characterisation was good, the observations wonderful, as always, I just wish that having read the whole book that parts which were emphasised throughout the book were never properly explained, or if they were they clearly passed me by. On reflection the whole series of Sophie Hannah’s books seem to appeal to different people, I loved Kind of Cruel but didn’t really take to A Room Swept White so I will continue to read what she offers whilst keeping my expectations of enjoyment in check.

I received this book through Amazon Vine. I’m slightly upset that my reading year has started on a disappointing note but hopefully it will pick up soon.

Kind of Cruel (Spilling CID, #7)Kind of Cruel by Sophie Hannah

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have read each and every one of Sophie Hannah’s six previous books and had this one on pre-order, something I never do. The story is laid out over a matter of two years but many of the events discussed had already happened. The narrator is a hypnotherapist who explains that memory is different to the stories we tell to make fragmented memories whole. Ususally I find devices like this, at best, slightly annoying. In this book I found the therapist’s words interesting, giving real insight into the character’s lives. The therapist is trying to help Amber Hewerdine with her insomnia, Amber Hewerdine wants to know why her sister-in-law disappeared over Christmas Day years previously.

This book is superb, it has every element that creates a good psychological thriller. There is a cast of believable characters,including the ongoing back story of Simon and Charlie Waterhouse along with the truly awful boss Proust. The mystery has twists and turns right up to the end. Although the motive was unlikely, it was not so off the wall that I felt let down, the whole story was pure enjoyment.

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A Room Swept White (Spilling CID, #5)A Room Swept White by Sophie Hannah

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book focusses on mothers who have been convicted of killing their babies. Sophie Hannah mixes in a puzzle and a murder or two producing both variety and interest for the reader. The only thing that lets this book down is that the characters weren’t likeable and so unlike some books (including her previous ones) I could put the book down.

I felt the second half of the book was much better than the first but as other reviewers have noted many of the themes weren’t followed through to any sort of conclusion. That said I’m glad I bought this one.

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