How deep does the parent/child relationship go? If you saw your father kill your mother in a drunken argument then plunge a knife into your little sister's chest or you were the sister whose chest he plunged the knife into - could you or would you forgive him? Could you still love him? How would it shape the rest of your life?
These are the questions posed in The Murderer's Daughters.
Lulu believes she is the reason her family fell apart: she opened the door to the apartment - she let her father in on the fateful day he murdered her mother and stabbed her sister. The sense of guilt haunts her through out her life and causes her to feel the need to protect her baby sister who she both loves fiercely and resents for her carefree lifestyle and her need to maintain a thread of a relationship with her father.
Merry, the youngest and Daddy's little girl has vague, blurry memories of what happened. She knows it happened but at the same time can't/won't quite believe all the negatives about her daddy. While Lulu insists their father is as good as dead and maintains the story that their parents were killed in a car accident Merry continues to visit her father in prison.
I wasn't sure about this book to start with because of the subject matter - it's an interesting concept to explore but at the same time needs to be handled delicately and with respect as for many people this scenerio is their reality but the author had obviously done her homework and research because this book was a rollercoaster of emotion and so intricately written. I loved how it was written in the first person and switched from Lulu to Merry and portrayed each of their differing emotions and issues.
Not exactly a light read but definitely a great read.
I'm slightly late for this one this week but anyway here it is: This week's topic is feel good books. Books which provoke warm, fuzzy feelings. Random ramblings created this meme so check her blog out.
Now onto my feel good picks:
1) Winnie the pooh - who doesn't love this loveable little bear. Even a cynic could sit down and read this book and still be enchanted.
2) The Notebook - Ah, this book just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy - Allie and Noah are just great, their love suffers but stays strong and lasts the test of time.
3) Charlie and The Chocolate Factory - there really isn't anything else to say.
4) The Rescue - this one's a bit soap opera-ish but still a really heartwarming story.
5) Alice in Wonderland - slightly trippy but what's not to love?
6) Hairy Maclary - I worshipped this book as a child and the author is from New Zealand. The language is just so flowy and Hairy is cute.
7) The Cat in the Hat - Dr. Seuss was a genius - his language was so rhythmic, delicious and funny.
8) Emma - what would a list of feel good books be without a little Jane Austen? Jane Austen's writing makes me wish for a time past - a time with flowy, romantic language, gentlemen and the lost art of the letter.
9) Mary Poppins - I always wished for a nanny like her (not that I had a nanny to begin with) - some singing, motherly figure who'd fix all the familial problems.
10) Charlotte's Web - Wilber was so super cute, Charlotte wise just a gorgeous book.
The Book Blogger Hop is hosted by crazy-for-books and is a wonderful way for book bloggers to connect with each other and increase their follows.
This week's question is: Do you judge a book by it's cover?
The majority of the time: yes. If a cover doesn't jump out at me in the bookshop then I'm not as likely to pick it up and peruse it. It's not the defining factor on whether or not I purchase a book - there are other factors such as the title itself, if I have read anything else by the same author, if I've read good reviews for it - but the cover is definitely a factor, it's got to intrigue me.
If you want to join in on the hop go over to crazy for books and check it out.
When we first meet Alice she is floating in a dreamlike state and all she can smell is lavender. Her eyelids flutter open and she believes she is twenty-nine and pregnant with her sultana - her first baby, her husband and her have an idyllic beautifully loving, passionate marriage and the year is 1998. It's in fact 2008, she is the mother of three children, her husband apparently now hates her and they are getting a divorce and she has turned into the kind of person she never wished to be.
Her eldest child believes she hates her, her sister walks on eggshells around her and can't quite believe she's being so friendly and her husband just wants to know if with her memory loss she is capable of looking after the three children she doesn't remember having.
This is a beautiful book - and just look at that cover- about second chances and reforming your life into what you want it to be and rediscovering the joy in life. Alice's life is now like a blank canvas she can now redesign.
The writing of this book is so intricate that I read it in one day and became so immersed in Alice's story I felt like I was inside her life and head watching it all unfold - I could feel her confusion, her pain and her heart ache. The book is narrated in such a unique way; firstly by Alice, secondly by Alice's sister via her journal and thirdly by Alice's surrogate grandmother through her blog and online comments. This is a really uniquely intriquing book which I just could not put down.
1) Twilight - this is the version of the book I first bought and I love the cover. The hands holding the apple are just the perfect representation of the temptation Bella is for Edward. It represents the push/pull of good and evil as shown in the bible. And the pure white arms against the black background just pop.
2) Fallen: This book cover is part of what attracted me to the book without even knowing the premise. The dark looming background is mysterious and a little bit dangerous. The standing side on in such dark colours almost blends into the background and not being able to see her face adds to the mystery and makes you wonder who she is and what her story is.
3) Charlie and The Chocolate factory: I was just so in love with this book as a child that any cover for it would do it for me.
4) To Kill a Mockingbird - This is the 50th anniversary edition which I actually own - it was given to me as a gift and I absolutely love it, the hardcover grey cover with the symbolic mockingbird and the white lettering is gorgeous.
5) Tomorrow when the war began: This was a book I read as a teenager and I keep going back to it. The cover represents everything the book is about. The ferris wheel lit up coming out of the dark background, the barbed wire representing the town being caged in and held prisoner.
6) PS, I love you - Again this is the version of the book I own, I just adore this cover with the bundle of letters - I love letter writing it's such a lost art and in the concept of this book it's such a beautiful healing thing. A bundle of letters on the cover perfectly represents the concept of the book.
7) The Lovely Bones - This was such a haunting book for me. Because of the subject matter I couldn't decide if I wanted to/was going to read it. In the end I did and it was so beautifully and delicately handled and while Susie's actual death was a bit graphic the rest of the book - as narrated by Susie was more about the aftermath and the pain of letting go. The cover is beautiful, the blue like the sky or the ocean and the bracelet floating at the top to me represents Susie's soul floating somewhere in the place between life and death.
8) Ink exchange - While the book itself didn't really do anything for me, the cover is gorgeous - the tattoo, the girl looking over her shoulder and the purple background as if it were the ink.
9) Hush, Hush - This is the perfect cover for this book - the image of an angel literally crashing through as he falls to earth and from grace and the feathers of his wings flying out as he falls. The grey background is like the stormy skies.
10) The last letter from your lover - while I didn't particularly enjoy the story, the cover appeals to my fascination with letter writing and love letters, it's what attracted me to the book in the first place.
Favourite Fictional Character is a weekly meme by the blog : http://wordsmithonia.blogspot.com/. It's where we discuss our favourite fictional characters from books, tv, movies.
What child at some point or another didn't wish desperately to be Peter Pan. The boy who never grew up?
Peter was the leader of a gang of mis-fits or lost boys who were lost by their parents and went to neverland never growing up. Why would they? Their adventures in neverland were much more impressive than any a grown up seemed to have.
I also adored Tinkerbell, Peter's best friend who just happened to be a little bit in love with him. Peter was the hero of the story but at the same time he was very self-indulgent, self centred and carried around a huge ego. But why wouldn't he - after all those in Neverland (with the exception of Caption Hook) worshipped him and put him above everyone else.
The ability to fly was Peter's most attractive quality - but it had it's weakness as it was a combination of fairy dust and happy thoughts. He can also mimic voices and the dreaded crocodile which terrifies Caption Hook so immensely.
For me, Peter Pan represents all which is great about being a chid: the joy and the sense that the world is a place filled with fun and adventure, the sense that you can do and be anything you want....
1) You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view--until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.
To Kill a Mockingbird
Atticus Finch to daughter Scout, Chapter 3.
2) The problem isn't finding out where you are gonna go-its figuring out what you are gonna do once you get there that is. - Jaime - A Walk to Remember
3) Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us. - Pride and Prejudice
4) Love lends wings to our desires. ALEXANDRE DUMAS, The Count of Monte Cristo
5) "We walk alone through this world, but if we’re lucky, we have a moment of belonging to something, to someone, that sustains us through a lifetime of loneliness" - The Bronzehorseman
6) "Humans are vulnerable because they're capable of being hurt - Patch in Hush Hush
7) Isn’t it supposed to be like this? The glory of first love, and all that. It’s incredible, isn’t it, the difference between reading about something, seeing it in the pictures, and experiencing it? - Edward Cullen - Twilight
8) "It's hard keeping everything the same when the same things look and feel so different" - Leaving Paradise
9) "I guess by now I should know enough about loss to realize that you never really stop missing someone-you just learn to live around the huge gaping hole of their absence." - Ever in Evermore
10) "how many lives do you need to live, before you find someone worth dying for?" - Fallen
One Moment One Morning explores the relationship between three women who witness a tragedy on the morning train from Brighton to London and how it affects their lives.
Karen is the wife of a man who suddenly goes from laughing with her to collapsing from a heart attack. Lou is the women who is sitting opposite on the train and witnesses the whole painful moment. Anna is Karen's best friend and god mother to her children and is in the train a few carriages away and shares a taxi with Lou before she knows what has happened.
This is a slow moving story with not a lot of action and I've read a few reviews stating it was boring and lacking but for anyone who has experienced grief first hand it is a intriguing exploration of the mixed up emotions, the wondering why, the wondering if there was more you could have done, the split personality you suddenly become trying to maintain some semblance or normality and then falling apart the next minute.
It's not exactly and exciting page turner but the characters are well developed and the writing is fluid and beautifully composed and the author captures the pain of grief beautifully.