Reviews

If you have read something you've really enjoyed, no doubt others will too. Please share your review with us - we'd love to pass it on as a recommendation.

Email us the book title, author, short story outline and what you loved about it.

All reviews will be read by the library, and edited if necessary, before being published.

 

The tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris   Tattooist of Auschwitz

The Tattooist of Auschwitz is based on the true story of Lale and Gita Sokolov, two Slovakian Jews who survived Auschwitz and eventually made their home in Australia. In that terrible place, Lale was given the job of tattooing the prisoners marked for survival—literally scratching numbers into his fellow victims' arms in indelible ink to create what would become one of the most potent symbols of the Holocaust. Lale used the infinitesimal freedom of movement that this position awarded him to exchange jewels and money taken from murdered Jews for food to keep others alive. If he had been caught, he would have been killed; many owed him their survival.

This is an incredible, compelling read and hard to put down once you start. Even though this is primarily Lale's story, the people who appear throughout it each have their own stories to tell, and it is unimaginably hard to visualise the enormity of how many were affected and lost in the concentration camps. What also shone through was the human spirit and the will to do what it takes to survive.

The seven deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton   Seven deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

At a gala party thrown by her parents, Evelyn Hardcastle will be killed--again. She's been murdered hundreds of times, and each day, Aiden Bishop is too late to save her. Doomed to repeat the same day over and over, Aiden's only escape is to solve Evelyn Hardcastle's murder and conquer the shadows of an enemy he struggles to even comprehend--but nothing and no one are quite what they seem.

The plot for this book is really quite unique, in that the main character relives the same day eight times, but in a different body. However, it can get confusing at times so definitely needs to be read with attention.

 

The secret life of Luke Livingstone by Charity Norman 

Girl meets boy. They fall in love, and they marry. For thirty years they share one another's lives. That should have been the end of the story. Luke Livingstone is a lucky man. He's a father and grandfather, a respected solicitor, a pillar of the community. He has a loving wife in Eilish, children who adore him and an idyllic home in the Oxfordshire countryside. But Luke is struggling with an unbearable secret, one that is close to destroying him. All his life, Luke has hidden the truth about himself - a truth so fundamental that it will shatter his family, rock his community and leave him an outcast. Luke has nowhere left to run. He must either end his life, or become the woman he knows himself to be - whatever the cost. His family is tested to its limits, as each of them is forced to consider what makes a person essentially themselves. What do you do when you find that your husband - your father, your son - is not who you thought? Can you ever love him again?.

Read it all in one sitting, right through the night. I think what I loved most about this novel was the utmost respect and compassion with which the author treats Lucia's story. It's clear that she has done a huge amount of research on the subject of trans issues and how it is for a person to come out as trans and begin the transition to the gender they know themselves to be.

 

See you in September by Charity Norman  

It was supposed to be a short trip - a break in New Zealand before her best friend's wedding. But when Cassy waved goodbye to her parents, they never dreamed that it would be years before they'd see her again. Having broken up with her boyfriend, Cassy accepts an invitation to stay in an idyllic farming collective. Overcome by the peace and beauty of the valley and swept up in the charisma of Justin, the community's leader, Cassy becomes convinced that she has to stay. As Cassy becomes more and more entrenched in the group's rituals and beliefs, her frantic parents fight to bring her home - before Justin's prophesied Last Day can come to pass.

A mesmerizing look inside a cult- how they recruit a person and draw them in; how they manipulate you into believing what they wish you to believe. This book was utterly terrifying but utterly believable. 

 

Sunset shadows by Bronwyn Parry  

For police officers Steve Fraser and Tess Ballard, a split-second decision saves the lives of fifty members of a cult ­- but also puts their careers on the line. Tess's work is everything to her; she's forged a new life through sheer determination, so when her past returns to haunt her, Steve must race through wild country if he is to save the people he most cares about.

Sunset Shadows is book three of the Goodabri series and allows the bad boy Steve to finally find the person to love and understand him. I love the way Bronwyn Parry inter-twin the stories from Goodabri series one and two to complete the plot. In this book, Steve grew to be a good man and a good policeman. I recommend this book

 

Here and gone by Haylen Beck  

It begins with a woman fleeing through Arizona with her kids in tow, trying to escape an abusive marriage. When she's pulled over by an unsettling local sheriff, things soon go awry and she is taken into custody. Only when she gets to the station, her kids are gone. And then the cops start saying they never saw any kids with her, that if they're gone than she must have done something with them...

Meanwhile, halfway across the country a man hears the frenzied news reports about the missing kids, which are eerily similar to events in his own past. As the clock ticks down on the search for the lost children, he too is drawn into the desperate fight for their return.

Creepy....Terrifying....Unsettling....are words that come to mind when describing the start of Here and Gone. It kept me hooked from page one with a fast pace, intense, but straight forward storyline, and a killer of a finish-line!


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