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Tuesday, 3 May 2016

'Tizzie' by p.d.r. lindsay
'The Effects of Henry's Cage: Elean's Story'

Kindle Countdown Sale

May 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th.
Price reduction from $3.99 to 99 cents or 99pence.
Kindle versions only.

book review Coridors of the Night by Anne Perry

Corridors of the Night (William Monk, #21)Corridors of the Night by Anne Perry

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am always delighted to find a new Anne Perry, whether it is a Monk or a Pitt novel. This is a Monk novel and a little different from the usual plot line. Anne Perry always leaves a reader with something to think about and 'Corridors of the Night' touches closely on a topic which is just as relevant today.

That is one of the joys of a well written historical. It can tackle topics which are sensitive today and because the setting is the past, make readers see more clearly the problem, at a distance from the present hot debate.

'Corridors of the Night' deals with medical/scientific research, what is and is not acceptable in the effort to save lives. It's always a difficult topic, and certain things - animal experiments, experiments on prisoners, the rights of the individual - make it a real hot potato. In the novel we have a doctor and chemist experimenting with blood transfusion.

We simply accept this as standard procedure but in Victorian times it's accepted that people die from loss of blood, and there is no way to prevent it. It wasn't until 1901 that blood groups were discovered and so enabled doctors to make successful blood transfusions. One can imagine how desperate doctors and nurses were to see blood transfusions working in Hester Monk's day.

And so the story starts with Hester standing in for a sick friend at a hospital she has not worked in before. Dr Rand welcomes her special skills learnt nursing during the Crimea. His brother, the chemist, is delighted with her. When she discovers children locked in a secret ward, who are being used to supply blood, things start to become more than criminal, it's all about ethics. When a dying man, wealthy and obsessed with living, demands treatment for his blood disease, then Hester finds herself facing the ethical dilemma. Not so Hamilton Rand. Kidnap, mayhem and court trials follow. As readers we are made to think because Hester knows how vital it is to humanity to learn how to give a blood transfusion. She is torn between ethics and that huge step to save lives.

As usual Anne Perry gives readers a well written story. Her word choice is always delightful and her dialogue nicely Victorian without being obscure. The tone of this novel is more sombre than usual, but it is, as ever, a great read with a story that lingers and makes readers think.

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Sunday, 1 May 2016

Advanced warning, sale of Writer's Choice books.

Amazon Kindle Countdown Sale
‘Tizzie’ by p.d.r. lindsay

'The Effects of Henry's Cage: Elean's Story' by Bernadette Joyce

May 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th.
Price reduction from $3.99 to 99 cents or 99pence.
Kindle versions only.

A Review

Hot MoneyHot Money by Dick Francis

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is one of my favourite Dick Francis novels. It has all his trademark touches, the tight writing, excellent characters and dialogue, and a great plot.

Someone is trying to kill Malcolm Pembroke, has already murdered his wife. But Malcolm, the man with the golden touch and millions, five ex-wives, nine children has a stubborn wish to live. The problem is that the police are getting nowhere and Malcolm is scared, so he approaches his estranged son, Ian, the jockey and racehorse trainer for help. And it soon becomes obvious that it is one of the family trying to kill Malcolm.

One of the joys of a Dick Francis is the characters who are 3D, 'real' people and when they speak it is quite clear who is who. Ian is an interesting character as is his father. The rest of the family come alive, warts, problems and all, as Ian investigates. We see the foibles and follies of a group of people who want their father's money - well some of it - right now. And the ending is sad but it is also a reminder of what obsessions can do to people.

The book was published in 1987. It is still relevant and a cracking good read.

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