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More Books by My Bed

I’ve had a delicious feast of words lately and to crown it all off have just finished The Visitors by Sally Beauman. For SB fans this is an absolute must-read. It’s a work of art, beautifully penned with a story that spans several decades from 1923, leaping in time between England and Egypt with the factual event of the discovery of Tutankamum’s tomb at its heart. I call The Visitors my gourmet read for the year to date – I’m sure you will love it, Sally Beauman is a true master of detail and spins a beautiful tale. I’ve yet to be dissatisfied with anything she writes and I’m confident that day is never going to come. If you haven’t read any of her books, start with Dark Angel or Destiny. I have them both on my list of best books.

So what else is either waiting to be read or recently read and consigned to one of my overflowing book shelves?

Another winner from John Grisham, Sycamore Row. Remember A Time to Kill? It’s the successor to that and the phrases instinctive storyteller; best thriller writer alive; ferociously plot driven; all come to mind. JG truly is a master of the legal crime/thriller and his ability to create believable characters that we love to love – or hate, is second to none. Remember young Jake Brigance, the lawyer in a Time to Kill? Well, here he is again battling against the same impossible odds. It was a fantastic read – I found it difficult to get any work done during that read. Well, I did work but my nights were definitely taken up for the week it took to read this fantastic tale.

For something quite different I have been reading Lessons From Madame Chic by Jennifer L. Scott. This was one of those dippy books that you pick up and read a chapter from before going on to your latest read – unless it’s John Grisham or Sally Beauman or Barbara Erskine with whose books you can’t possibly read anything else in tandem. This little book was written about JLS’s time as a foreign exchange student in Paris and the two families she lived with. She refers to these two quite different families as Famille Chic and Famille Bohemienne and introduces us to their equally passionate and fascinating styles of living.  I am only part way through the book but enjoying each little dip immensely. I am about to read Chapter Six, Perfect Le No-Makeup Look and looking forward to finding out how to look great without any touching up. I’ve already learned some invaluable tips about snacking – being not so chic; how not to deprive myself; turning exercise into a part of my life without it becoming a chore; the ten item wardrobe – fascinating and completely makes sense – and finding my true style. I expect by the time I finish this lovely little treasure to have evolved into some kind of slender, stylish, fit, interesting, feminine, passionate, uncluttered, arty, non-materialistic consumate entertainer with an air of mystery. I can’t wait.

The Joy Luck Club. Apparently this little gem spent nine months on the New York Times Best Seller list and I am not surprised. I haven’t read it yet but this is what the Washington Post Book World has to say about it. Amy Tan’s brilliant novel flits in and out of many realities but all of them contain mothers and daughters… Each story is a fascinating vignette, and together they weave the reader through a world where the Moon Lady can grant any wish, where a child, promised in marriage at two and delivered at 12 can, and with cunning, free herself; where a rich man’s concubine secures her daughter’s future by killing herself and where a woman can live on, knowing she has lost her entire life.



The next on my list to read after The Joy Luck Club is That Part was True by Deborah McKinley. Now this little book really intrigues me because I read that the author was recently given a $1m advance for this and the TV, or was that film, rights for it.  I believe this is her second novel after half a dozen non-fiction titles. For an advance like that in a world where such things are fast shrinking, I expect to be glued to the pages from start to end.

Can’t wait.

See you at our next book talk.



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