Book review: Trigger Mortis by Anthony Horowitz

Everyone knows who James Bond is, or at least they think they do. The James Bond I know is the James Bond of the films, particularly those featuring Pierce Brosnan or Daniel Craig as the man with a license to kill. But that James Bond – suave, smooth, likeable if a little angsty and high…

Book review: Pretty Is by Maggie Mitchell

Identity, memory, self-worth and desire – all are at the core of Maggie Mitchell’s beguiling novel Pretty Is. When Carly May and Lois were 12 years old they were kidnapped. Missing for two months, everyone presumed they were dead, until they were rescues. Now grown up, Carly May has changed her name and is pursuing…

Book review: The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett

Some love stories are meant to be told over and over again, and Laura Barnett takes that and twists it slightly for her debut novel The Versions of Us. Eva and Jim meet at Cambridge in 1958 when she swerves on her bike to avoid a dog. That remains the same in each of their…

Book review: Summertime by Vanessa Lafaye

The mark of a really good book is how long it stays with you after you’ve finished reading it. I first read Vanessa Lafaye’s Summertime in March 2014, and when I shut my eyes I can still recall with perfect clarity one of its final, most brutal, upsetting scenes. But more on that in a…

Review: Storm by Tim Minchin, with DC Turner and Tracy King

Clever, lyrical and beautiful, Tim Minchin’s beat poem Storm has been viewed millions of times on YouTube, and it’s finally been turned into a book. So how does it fare? Pretty well. Okay, that’s an understatement. It’s fares brilliantly. Minchin’s poem about two dinner guests (Michin and the eponymous Storm) in a verbal battle over…

Review: The Storms of War by Kate Williams

If Downton Abbey hasn’t lived up to your expectations since the end of season one, then you need to pick up Kate Williams’ The Storms of War, which is the novel that Downton would have been if it had more historical insight and research behind it and less of the over-the-top drama. It is 1914,…