When I discovered that Mary Watson’s debut young adult novel was going to be published by Bloomsbury, I knew right away that it was going to be very, very good. I’ve been quoting Watson’s short fiction in my workshops for some time, especially her Caine-Prize winning story, Jungfrau. I’m not the only one who thinks her short story collection, Moss, contains some of the best fiction out there. When she left for Ireland nearly ten years ago, it felt like South Africa had lost a very important voice. Until now.
First let me say that I am a huge fan of David Walliams. Specifically, his comedy. I love Little Britain, Walliams and Friend, and all his appearances on shows like The Big Fat Quiz. I really enjoy his comedic style, with his signature build-up, pause and dry punchline.
Continue reading “LEGO book review: The Boy in the Dress”
I must confess that I haven’t actually read Practical Magic. It’s one of my favourite films, which doesn’t really count, I know. Truthfully, I didn’t even know it was a novel until I saw a Tweet about the release of its prequel, The Rules of Magic.
Happily, having since ordered Practical Magic for later, I decided to tuck into its prequel over the Christmas break.
Imagine my surprise at seeing a new short story anthology written by a friend and fellow Trade Secrets contributor available for free on Amazon.
Continue reading “LEGO book review: Dark Shenanigans”
Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke wasn’t what I was expecting, which I guess is why you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover. I did. The gorgeous black cover looked gloriously spooky and immediately caught my eye when I visited The Book Lounge to spend some birthday vouchers. I loved the assortment of owls, moons, apples, spiderwebs and stars set against the black background. I added it to my Halloween reads pile.
Continue reading “LEGO book review: Wink Poppy Midnight”
The Breakfast Club meets Gossip Girl in this fast-paced teen murder mystery.
Five high school students are given detention when phones are discovered in their bags by a teacher notorious for searching gym bags before lessons. One of the students, Simon, runs a gossip App called About That, making him the most hated kid at school. What makes him so dangerous is that the rumours he reports always turn out to be true.
Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls has been sitting on my shelf for a while, (terrible, I know.) In my defense I had a book to finish, short stories to hand in and a workshop to plan. But once I had finished relaunching my website, it was the first book I reached for. To sum up my thoughts – it’s just magical.
Edited by Jared Shurin and Mahvesh Murad, this gorgeous anthology features a diverse array of authors, including Nnedi Okorafor, Neil Gaiman, EJ Swift and James Smythe.
The collection comprises dreamy tales with a palpable middle-eastern flavour, reminiscent of One Thousand and One Nights. Many of the stories are set in the middle east. What holds them together is that they all feature the legendary djinn, a creature from Arabian mythology – commonly known as the genie from Aladdin’s lamp.
From the archive: 5 June 2014
I read The Fault in Our Stars over Christmas (it was a gift to myself). In fact, I very rudely sat outside in the sun, while my partner and his family were inside in the middle of Christmas lunch celebrations. I couldn’t put the book down, not even on Christmas Day.
(See this picture? That’s me stretched out between two camping chairs while trifle is being served inside.)
I know a few people who make a habit of not reading Next Big Thing books because ultimately, the end result never quite lives up to the hype. (I haven’t read The Girl on the Train and the movie’s already gone to DVD).
But sometimes it does.