Monday, 24 February 2014

Deborah Moggach: The best exotic Marigold Hotel

Enticed by advertisements for a newly restored palatial hotel and filled with visions of a life of leisure, good weather and mango juice in their gin, a group of very different people leave England to begin a new life in India. On arrival they are dismayed to find the palace is a shell of its former self, the staff more than a little eccentric, and the days of the Raj long gone. But, as they soon discover, life and love can begin again, even in the most unexpected circumstances.

Having seen the film posters I wanted to read this book - and I was not disappointed. This is funny entertainment about growing old more or less gracefully. And it shows that no matter how old our children are, they will always be just that - children. At times, the storyline was a little far-fetched, but that only added to the satire...

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Chris Kuzneski: The Einstein Pursuit

A lab destroyed. An explosion in Stockholm claims the lives of an elite collection of scientists. Evidence suggests the blast was designed to eliminate all traces of their research.It's up to Interpol director Nick Dial to uncover the truth about the lab and the attack. A scientist on the run. When Dr Mattias Sahlberg learns of the incident, he knows his life is at risk. He turns to the only men he can trust: Jonathon Payne and David Jones. Together, they must save Sahlberg from the unknown forces that want him dead.

This is the eighth instalment of the Payne and Jones thrillers, and it is as pacy, snappy and funny as all the others. Kuzneski really does not disappoint. "Like a young Chris Kuzneski" could have been so easily overlooked, but that is what makes the Kuzneski novels. Payne and Jones are devilish agents with a great sense of humour, which they need to cope with the devastation they always encounter. This time, we got to know the interpol staff a bit better, too, which added greatly to the light-heartedness of the thriller.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Martin Mucha: Papierkrieg

Arno Linder, Anfang dreißig, lebt im schönen Wien. Als Doktor der klassischen Philologie ist er aufgrund desaströser Universitätsreformen stark armutsgefährdet - nur mit mehr oder weniger legalen Nebenjobs kann er sich notdürftig über Wasser halten. In einer eisigen Märznacht stolpert Arno auf dem Heimweg über ein betrunkenes Mädchen. Als er beschließt, die Schöne nach Hause zu fahren, stellt er fest, dass das Töchterchen aus reichem Hause offenbar in einen Mordfall verwickelt ist. In der Hoffnung, für sein Schweigen gut bezahlt zu werden, beginnt sich Arno für die Hintergründe der Affäre zu interessieren und entwendet dem Ermordeten Handy und Notebook. Doch damit beginnen seinen Schwierigkeiten erst richtig: Mit der Mordwaffe in seinem Besitz wird er von der Polizei in die Mangel genommen. Seine Anstellung an der Uni droht verloren zu gehen. Und dann taucht auch noch ein serbischer Kunsthändler namens Mihailovic auf, der Arno eine antike Papyrusrolle zweifelhafter Herkunft anbietet.

Die Geschichte um Arno war zwar sehr unglaubwürdig, aber der Wiener Humor und die philosophischen Ausführungen waren sehr unterhaltsam. Mucha ist am Ende aber nicht ganz so mein Geschmack.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Graeme Simsion: The Rosie Project

Love isn't an exact science - but no one told Don Tillman. A thirty-nine-year-old geneticist, Don's never had a second date. So he devises the Wife Project, a scientific test to find the perfect partner. Enter Rosie - 'the world's most incompatible woman' - throwing Don's safe, ordered life into chaos. But what is this unsettling, alien emotion he's feeling?

This is really funny. The story is written from the point of view of a university professor who is trying to settle down and find a suitable woman to marry and start a family with. But he's got some issues with being socially inept and has Asperger's, but he doesn't seem to know. He knows he can't read social cues and doesn't understand feelings much, but he thinks that he's just being rational. Really hilarious read!