BOOK REVIEW #9: The Alchemist by Paul Coelho (1988)

the-alchemist.jpgThe Alchemist. Everyone has heard at least one about this book in his life. I was part of those people who knew the title, but I haven’t read it until I found it by chance in the pile of books the guy living in my room before me left me. So famous, very short (compared to what I usually read) and with a lot of time on my hands, the moment was perfect to start reading it.

Even though I knew the title, I have to confess that I did not know anything about the story. I kind of jumped into it without any preparation. I was surprised at first : simple sentences, story-telling and structure ; a very naive and simple protagonist, Santiago ; a weird  eerie atmosphere. I had the impression to be in a cotton bubble, in a dream while reading the Alchemist. This is probably part of its magic.

“Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.”

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BOOK REVIEW #8: The Keeper of Lost Causes by Jussi Adler-Olsen (2007)

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The Keeper of Lost Causes (US) or Mercy (UK) is a book written by the Danish writer of crime fiction, as well as a publisher, editor and entrepreneur Jussi Adler-Olsen in 2007. Its original title is Kvinden i buret.

Being a fan of Scandinavian authors and thrillers, when my boyfriend gave me this book, I started reading it at once. And I loved it. Indeed, The Keeper of Lost Causes is the first book of a whole series and its author won a great number of literary prizes for it : the Sealed Room Award (Japan 2012), the Livre Robinsonnais prize (France 2012), the Grand prix des lectrices de Elle (France 2012), the Barry Award Best Novel (US 2012), the Danskerees Yndlingsforfatter (Denmark 2013), the Prix Plume d’or (France, 2013) and many more..

That should be enough to convince you to try it ! Personally, I’m already reading the sequel  The Absent One (US) or Disgrace (UK) (Fasandræberne in Danish).

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Book review #7: N’éteins pas la lumière by Bernard Minier (2014)

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Willing to discover a new book ? Into thriller ? Then this review is for you. Bernard Minier is a French writer and N’éteins pas la lumière is his third book. It has not been translated yet, but it should not be long before it is, so do not worry if you do not speak french.

I wanted to offer you a different kind of book review : no linear story here, but just something to arouse your curiosity let’s say. Let me know it makes you want to read it.

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Book review #6: The Frozen Dead by Bernard Minier (2011)

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Published in 2011, Bernard Minier’s first novel was hailed in the media. His thriller was translated into a dozen of languages and it received the Prize for the best french novel at the Thriller Festival of Cognac. Not bad for a first book ! A mysterious investigation with multiple cross-stories at the heart of the mountains of the Pyrénées, “The Frozen Dead” (or “Glacé”, in French) is a perfect read for the winter. A ghost village, an asylum, murders…

I am sharing with you the story through the eyes of two of the characters. Will those few fictive excerpts arise your curiosity ?

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Book review #5 :The Summons by John Grisham (2002)

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After having tried for the first time to read a John Grisham a few weeks ago, without really knowing his work, I decided to try it again despite my first reading being a disappointment. This time, I finished my book a little bit more satisfied. I’d give it a 6/10.

Here’s the story :

The main character, Ray Atlee, is a law professor with a good salary at the University of Virginia. He has a brother, Forrest, and a father, known to many as Judge Reuben V. Atlee. Ray is sent to his father’s house in Clanton, Mississippi, to discuss issues regarding the old man’s will and estate. When he finds his father dead in the study, Ray discovers a sum of over three million dollars in the house, money which is not part of Judge Atlee’s will. Ray immediately thinks the money is “dirty” because his father could not possibly have made so much money in his career.

Assuming that he is the only one who knows about the money, Ray decides to take it without making it officially part of the estate, and does not tell anyone about it. But later reality proves otherwise. Ray is being followed; someone else knows about the money. After his own investigations into the roots of the money and the identity of his shadow—including trips to casinos and shady meetings with prominent southern lawyers—he eventually discovers the true story behind the money.

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Book review #4 : Set in Darkness by Ian Rankin (2000)

13901617_10210825429418253_1438653037_oI did not know the adventures of inspector Rebus, nor Ian Rankin before starting reading this book. I decided to give its change to Set In Darkness because I found it in my boyfriend’s father’s library. The book cover seemed interesting, and I liked the fact that the action takes place in Scotland for a chance. Why not !

Book cover :

Edinburgh is about to become the home of the first Scottish parliament in 300 years. As political passions run high, DI John Rebus is charged with liaison, thanks to the new parliament being resident in Queensbury House, bang in the middle of his patch. But Queensbury House has its own dark past.

Legend has it that a young man was roasted there on a spit by a madman. When the fireplace where the youth died is uncovered, another more recent murder victim is found. Days later, in the gardens outside, there is another body and Rebus is under pressure to find instant answers. As the case proceeds, the Inspector finds himself face to face with one of Edinburgh’s most notorious criminals…

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Book review #3 :The Wave by Todd Strasser (1981)

13918826_10210825381257049_1951334793_o.jpgI have been hearing about this book for so long, I thought it was time to read it when my boyfriend bought it ! Indeed, it deals with important issues, notably the lessons of History, psychology and group thinking as well as nazism. Besides, it won the 1981 Massachusetts Book Award for Children’s/Young Adult literature. So I thought, why not give it a try ?

The Wave is novel written in 1981 by Todd Strasser. It is a novelization of a teleplay by Johnny Dawkins for the movie The Wave, a fictionalized account of the “Third Wave” teaching experiment by Ron Jones that took place in a Ellwood P. Cubberley High School history class in Palo Alto, California. I really liked the idea that this was based on real events, and it increased my curiosity.

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