Archive | October 29, 2014

The Oyster Catcher – Jo Thomas.

 

 

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Back of the book : 

Dooleybridge, County Galway.

Population : 482 ( or thereabouts ) 

 

The last place Fiona Clutterbuck expects to end up, alone on her wedding night.

But after the words ‘I do’ have barely left her mouth, that’s exactly where she is – with only her sequinned shoes and a crashed camper van for company.

One thing is certain : Fi can’t go back. So when the opportunity arises to work for local oyster farmer, Sean Thornton, she jumps at the chance. Now Fi must navigate suspicious locals, jealous rivals and a wild, unpredictable boss if she’s to find a new life, and love, on the Irish coast. And nothing – even a chronic fear of water – is going to hold her back.

 

What I think : 

Fiona Clutterbuck (what a really wonderful name !) has been jilted by Brian her new husband, she doesn’t even get to her wedding night. So, she gets into to the hired camper van and runs away. She finally turns up in a small Irish village called Dooleybridge. She’s still wearing her wedding dress and her very sparkly shoes. Its not long before she meets Sean Thornton, and he offers her a job. However the job is a ‘Girl Friday’ to a oyster farmer and Fi is petrified of water. will she be able to stay and do the job or will she carry on running ?

I really, really enjoyed  this book. Right from the moment I it picked it up and started reading, it dragged me in. I really loved all the characters, from the locals in the pub to the wonderful animals at the farm. I especially liked the two donkeys Freddie and Mercury, who kept on ‘breaking free’ to visit the white lady donkey down the lane, and would really love a gorgeous dog like Grace. I did have a bit of trouble warming to Fi at the start, but then as the book got going she started grow on me and I ended up quite liking her.

It has everything, from Jealous partners and oyster pirates to American Celebrity Chefs. This book has a few twists and turns along the way, you don’t actually find out why Fi’s husband jilted her until about a quarter of the way through the book.

The author is very descriptive of the surrounding areas and at times I really felt I was there standing on the edge of a very cold Irish sea. And I really feel I know a bit about oyster farming now, the author certainly did her homework !

This is a very gentle, easy read with a really gorgeous, old fashioned ending, I give it 9/10.

I shall definitely be looking out for Jo’s other books.

Published by Headline Review on 06 Nov 2014.

Thank you to BookBridgr for the Copy of the book to read and review.

The Boy in the Cemetery – Sebastian Gregory.

 

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Back of the book : 

This is the story of a girl who lived but was not alive …. 

Carrie Anne is desperately unhappy. Tangled in a web of abuse, she seeks solace in the cemetery that backs onto her garden. But something creeps between the gravestones. Carrie Anne is not alone ….

 

…. and a boy who was dead, but could not die.

The cemetery is home to a boy. He has guarded these forgotten bones since meeting a gruesome end two hundred years ago. Neither dead or alive, he has been watching for a long time. And now, he finally has a visitor he’s been waiting for ….

 

What I think : 

The Boy’s Mother takes her own life by jumping into the river, she had ‘The Consumption’ and her mind had been turned by it. His father isn’t a very nice person, he’s a drunk and makes the boy work after dark as a grave robber. One night whilst robbing a grave the boy notices a white stone angel that is guarding a baby’s grave. It reminds him of his mother and feels comforted by it. On the same night his father is attacked, and dies. The boy returns to the cemetery and there he meets a bad ghoul/spirit that turns him. The boy becomes ‘not alive but not dead’

Fast forward two hundred years, we meet Carrie Anne. Her father is abusing her and she’s very unhappy. To avoid prosecution her father moves them to a different town. When they arrive at the new house, Carrie Anne is interested to find out that there is a cemetery at the end of the garden. After an especially awful day, Carrie Anne ends up in the cemetery. Here she meets The Boy …..

When I decided to read this book I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, as it’s not my usual type of book. However I was pleasantly surprised, Once I started reading it I couldn’t put it down and read the whole thing in an afternoon and evening !

This book goes under the heading of ‘Young Adult’, however I think it’s maybe a more adult book as it did creep me out in a few places. Its very dark and quite sinister right from the start, and tells of poverty and hardship, especially when you find out that the boy is only twelve years old when he ‘dies’.

I didn’t Carrie Anne’s mother very much, I found her a very weak character and I really took an instant dislike to Carrie Anne’s father, he deserved everything he got. However I did myself feeling very sorry for Carrie Anne, and I found myself wanting to help her.

I really did like this book even although I did find it slightly odd in a couple of places !  It reminded me of Tim Burton’s ‘The Corpse Bride’ and ‘The Nightmare before Christmas’ which I really loved.

I give this book 9/10.

published by Carina on 29 October 2014.

Thank you to the publisher Carina and NetGalley for the digital copy of the book to read and review.