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Do you hear something? I think there's a noise downstairs and it's going to cause quite a stir.

A new Linwood Barclay book draws much excitement, and with his latest entry A Noise Downstairs, his books should be flying off the shelf. It sure got my attention: A Noise Downstairs has all the elements you’d expect from a Linwood Barclay classic – intrigue, great characters, and a plot that is addictive.
Paul Davis is just a normal guy, leading a normal life. He works at the university, is married to his second wife, Charlotte. Sure there are some issues in their marriage, but whose marriage doesn’t have issues? Everything seems to be going fine, until one day he encounters something horrific.
Driving down a deserted road, late one night, he notices his colleague’s car with a broken taillight. The colleague seems distraught and driving recklessly, so Paul decides to follow him. When they finally meet up, Paul realizes that the normally calm, charming colleague, is frazzled and standoffish. A quick glance at the back of the car, highlights two bodies. Before Paul has time to process wh…

The Melody by Jim Crace

You can listen to a classical piece of music and be instantly inspired. Whether it lifts your mood, or incites that knot in your body when the piece is laden with sadness, it’s a piece of melody that will linger. The Melody by Jim Crace feels like a piece that’s going to be embedded in your psyche.
Albert Busi lost his wife a few years ago, and feels like the years have caught up with him. Memories intertwine with the present, and the occurrences of the otherworldly are obscured with reality. The emptiness of losing his wife, is juxtaposed with his longing for his sister-in-law. Jim Crace goes to lengths to weave in the constant obsession. For a lonely widower, there is an idle calm to the ramblings.
It’s a slow journey of life and aging. Where have the years gone wonders Busi. When did he get old? He contemplates what the neighbours think of him… perhaps a lonely old man. He is well know in the town for his music and his songs.
The reference to melody is perhaps intertwined with the mem…

Mapping the Bones by Jane Yolen

From acclaimed writer, Jane Yolen, comes another tale set during the Holocaust. Totally immersive, switching between the viewpoints of twins, we hear from Chaim, as the story of the horror unfolds in Poland during WW2, and from his sibling Gittel, as she recounts her family and life, in the future. 

Mapping the Bones has been cleverly mapped. A story of struggle, loss and hope, is weaved into a compelling novel, that will leave readers with a glimpse of a powerful time in history. With powerful poetic prose, Jane Yolen draws in the reader and keeps them engaged.
Fraternal twins, Chaim and Gittel, have a bond that is unique. Chaim is Gittel’s conscience. Gittel, Chaim's strength. At the start of the book they are living in the Łódź Ghetto with their parents, barely making ends meet what little food they had to share, and constantly looking over their shoulders for potential trouble. When the rabbi, brings in a new family into their home, they have to learn to share their already meag…

Love and Ruin by Paula McLain

If you were going to have an obsession, then Ernest Hemingway is probably not a bad option. Author, Paula McLain (The Paris Wife) has made a living out of it. In her new novel, Love and Ruin, she once again transports us through time to retell a story, from an angle that you probably haven't heard of before. 

Her protagonist is Martha Gellhorn, Hemingway's third wife. The story is told from her point of view. Gellhorn's accomplishments were an embodiment of success: a great American novelist, travel writer and journalist, and considered one of the greatest war correspondents of the 20th century. Did you know that she reported on virtually every major conflict that took place during her 60-year career? 

The New York Times once referred to her as "a cocky, raspy-voiced maverick who saw herself as a champion of ordinary people trapped in conflicts created by the rich and powerful." 

Martha Gellhorn had already written a couple of books when she met Ernest Hemingway, an…

Only the Best for Dad

Dinner's In The Oven

Even if Dad is a masterchef, he will appreciate this great book that features 75 recipes in simple one-pan meals. Fresh ingredients, a few minutes of prep, pop in the oven, and voilà dinner is ready. One thing less to think about on busy week days. One of my faves is the Roasted eggplants with mozarella, chilli, lemon & parsley. Yum!

Published by Chronicle Books and distributed by Raincoast Books

Days with Dad by Nari Hong

This adorable children's book, features sketches that are comprised of soft, childlike coloured-pencil drawings, that create a strong intimacy on each page. The picture book is autobiographical written in both Korean and English. The story features a relationship between a young girl and her dad who is in a wheelchair. Conversations between the two are heartwarming and enlightening. Dad regrets all the things that he can't do with his daughter; the positive daughter is quick to assure him that there's nothing to feel badly about.…

When they go low, we go high

A book about speeches is always a must in any library. But a book about speeches that helped shape the world, and a commentary of the events leading up to those historical monumental words, is priceless. Add to that a post-analysis (it is the age of analytics after all) of the timing of it all, and the impact, makes this new book by Philip Collins incredibly powerful.

When They Go Low, We Go High, pays homage to Michelle Obama's notable speech, that became the motto for the political left and an anthem for opponents of oppression worldwide. It pulled at the public's heartstrings, in a way that is rarely done nowadays. 

Storytelling in any speech is important, and as Philip Collins takes us through 25 of the greatest inaugural addresses of presidents, or the revolutionary writings of Castro or Mandela, we are reminded of how the pen is mightier than the sword. 

A bit of background. Philip Collins used to be the speech writer for Tony Blair, which means he brings a thoughtful and d…

Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

This is Marisha Pessl's first foray into the YA genre, and Neverworld Wake has fans everywhere on edge. Having received an copy in advance of it's June release day, I have to say that it's unlike anything I've ever read. I felt the same way when I read Marisha Pessl's thriller, Night Film.

I didn't know what to expect with Neverworld Wake. This book was coined as a YA novel, and even though my expertise in the YA genre is limited, it sure didn't adhere to my preconception of what I imagined a YA novel should be like. 

Sure, Neverworld Wake is centred around a main cast of teenagers, but that about ends any comparison I have to any YA novel I've come across. 

Here's another disclaimer. Personally, I'm not a big fan of recurring themes in stories such as Groundhog Day, where characters get to relieve one day of their life. The loop seems endless to me, and rather repetitive. I prefer a story to move forward, each page offering a glimpse of something …