“The Two Lives Of Louis & Louise” by Julie Cohen (2019)

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“Louise Dawn Alder was born on the 8th of September 1978 to Peggy and Irving Alder of Casablanca, Maine.”

Gender seems a hot topic these days. I’m a cis man, but I have friends and acquaintances across the gender spectrum, and I find it an interesting subject. I’m a big believer in letting people live their happiest life, as long as they aren’t actively harming others, so how people identify doesn’t bother me, and I don’t see why it should bother anyone else. In this novel, we see how a single life can end up entirely differently just because of a change in a single chromosome.

In one timeline, Louise Alder is born on September 8th. In another timeline, Louis Alder is born. They are the same person, with exactly the same personality, appearance, friends, hobbies and goals, but one is male and one is female. As they grow up in small-town Maine, they learn who they are and explore their hormones and urges. But then, the night after graduation, something catastrophically awful happens to both of them, and they leave town.

Thirteen years later, they are summoned back to town as their mother is dying of cancer. Each of them must return to face the consequences of the night they ran away from. Louis is in the middle of a divorce, and Louise is a single mother raising her daughter, so right now going back to the place they’ve tried so hard to forget is just about the last thing they need. But you can’t run away from the past forever…

I think I expected a straight up story about how the patriarchy constantly puts women on the back step and ensures they generally have a much harder time of it in the world. Cohen, however, is better than that. Yes, Louis has more success in some ways, but his life isn’t anything like as perfect as it could be. Louise, in turn, has a job that she likes and is raising her daughter well, but her struggle is, for the most part, subtler. The fact that the two differ only in name and genitals is also interesting, meaning they look the same too. This means Louis is regarded as quite attractive, but Louise is seen as plain. Presumably she has quite a masculine looking face, but on Louis he seems more feminine.

As it progresses, you see that they are similar in every which way. In both timelines, there are days where they both wear the same t-shirt, or have the same thoughts. Even the novel they each write is on an identical subject. Rather than being a deconstruction of what the patriarchy does to women, it’s actually more an exploration in how little our gender should matter, which is very obvious to many. As children, it is accepted that Louis climbs trees, but Louise is encouraged not to. One telling moment in how the genders are “trained” comes when we learn that Louis eventually only cuddles his soft toy at night when no one else can see, and when Louise whistles, she is encouraged to turn it into a tune rather than be loud and boisterous with it. The relationships they have with other people also differ slightly. The events of the single catastrophic night mentioned in the synopsis are only different because of their gender, but one does wonder what would’ve happened had the nights happened the other way around. Elsewhere, Louis has an easier relationship with their mother than Louise does, but in both their father is kind but distant, although to Louise this is frustrating and to Louis this is just how men are. The subtleties are well observed.

A fascinating split timeline tale that is full of surprises.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“The Minotaur Takes A Cigarette Break” by Steven Sherrill (2000)

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“The Minotaur sits on an empty pickle bucket blowing smoke through bullish nostrils.”

What is it that sends books about loneliness to be in a near-constant steady trickle? Here we go again.

It’s been five thousand years since the Minotaur – now known as M – left the Cretan Labyrinth and since then the immortal beast has had to find ways to make a living. He’s currently working as a line chef at Grub’s Rib in Carolina, where his colleagues – mostly – respect and like him, and are used to his limited conversation and curious appearance. M leads a quiet, ordered life, keeping his head down, restoring cars, and observing the people around him.

While he looks controlled on the outside, years of being on the fringes of society can take a toll on a man, even if he does have the head of a bull, and as M is drawn deeper into the human world of emotions, confusion, need and lies, he finds himself spiralling into turmoil as he tries to stay afloat and not hurt those around him.

Who wouldn’t be taken with a title like this? I didn’t really know what to expect with it, but I’m a sucker for Greek mythology so I thought I’d take a punt on it. The writing sings but in a low baritone, emphasising the outsider nature of M, and making you root for him. He is an engaging character, almost entirely silent with a whole, vast world going on between his horns. He thinks a lot, and observes everything and everyone, so even if he doesn’t talk much, he’s certainly given everything a lot of thought.

Much is left unclear in the story, especially the events that surround M’s assimilation into the world. The people who know him well seem unperturbed by his appearance, and even some strangers take it entirely in their stride, although others pass comment. Along the way, we encounter at least two other figures from mythology who now appear to live in modern society, but we don’t find out how they got there either, and it seems to be a heightened reality where folk like this exist, but are taken for granted and are common enough that people aren’t terribly surprised if they encounter one. The magic realism of the piece shines in these moments, and it even becomes quite easy to forget that M himself isn’t entirely human, despite the frequent references to his size, his horns or his violent past.

A surprisingly touching book about feeling isolated and trying to fit in.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Anthracite” by Matt Thomas (2021)

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“The sound of samba drifting up from Aberdare’s Latin Quarter filled the bar with its contagious rhythm.”

The trick sometimes to getting a new book out there is to spot a gap in the market. For example, until now, much of the literati have been talking of little else than the fact there’s practically no Welsh-based comedy cyberpunk novels. Matt Thomas has got there first.

Kevin Jones is wasting his life, spending his days writing a graphic novel about a farting ninja and watching films with his forgetful grandfather. That is until Gwen walks into the Aberdare library and kidnaps him, taking him through a portal into an alternate universe where Wales is the dominant global superpower. Informed that there are people who want him dead, Gwen sets about trying to get him to the right people so he can be protected, because there’s something about Kevin that holds the key to why our world is the only one where Wales doesn’t take control of the planet.

In this alternate world, there’s no power higher than the Jones Corporation, created by Kevin’s grandfather as he was in this universe, and responsible for all the cheap energy that changed the world and made Wales rich. But they’ve got a secret, and they need Kevin, even if the druids, Taffia and the Jones’ political rivals want him dead. Kevin will have to finally pull his finger out if he’s to have any chance of saving himself – and the world(s).

Comparisons to Jasper Fforde are, I think, valid, but perhaps that’s just because he’s keen on using Wales for comedic purposes in his books. It’s a silly and funny novel, peppered with quips and led by an oblivious narrator. Kevin thinks of himself as the hero these sort of books require, but in reality he’s anything but. He remains deluded that women love him, he dream of being a graphic novelist will be a success, and that living at home with his mother is a choice he’s made. At one point, he even meets an old school friend who still lives with his parents and tells us what a loser he is. His delusion stretches to thinking that when Gwen kicks him in order to get him to shut up, he thinks it’s an accident. Because of this, he’s not exactly likeable, but there’s a certain something that’s endearing about him. In reality, you’d punch him in the face. In fiction, it’s funny.

I love alternate histories and finding the things that have changed. Having Wales as the only global superpower is naturally a funny idea. It allows for a whole raft of jokes about nationalism, Welsh rarebit, Tom Jones and druids. The text is peppered with Welsh dialect and words from the language, most of which is understandable by context, which is just as well as it’s not a language I have any knowledge of. I also like the idea of this being a multiverse where each one is slightly out of sync with the others, so when you jump across a barrier, you also travel in time, although that difference can be anywhere from a fraction of a second to the best part of a century. It’s another nice take on the notion.

A nice comedic romp that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Falling Dark” by Tom Lloyd (2021)

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“A level tone lost in the dark.”

There’s no telling what we’ll find out in the darkest corners of the universe when (or if) humanity ever gets there. Tom Lloyd, however, has an idea, and it’s not necessarily as comforting as others might like.

In a distance future where humanity is a multi-planetary species, Captain Song leads her crew on a mission which becomes interrupted by a find unlike any other. Hanging just above the atmosphere of a distant planet is an enormous spaceship, inert and unlike anything humans have ever built. This could be the find of a lifetime – a guarantee of financial security for the rest of her life, if only Song can get on-board and find something unique.

But the ship is ancient and battle-scarred, and nothing about it matches anything in their database. It could be dangerous, and it could change everything, or it could just be filled with remnants of a long-dead civilisation. And then it flashes a signal.

Lloyd gives us a universe where the Fermi paradox is solved by having the place crawling with aliens, but they’d all finished with space and died out long before humans ever showed up to join in. Despite the claustrophobic closeness of the plot, there’s simultaneously a weird agoraphobic sense of how big and empty everything is. The balance of size is a closely observed thing, with the abandoned ship being enormous, but also somehow cramped. You can’t help but share in Song’s panic as she explores something entirely new, where anything and everything could be ready to kill her and she wouldn’t even know.

A chilling, quick read, but worth a look if you like your horror set in places where no one can hear you scream.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Between The Stops” by Sandi Toksvig (2019)

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“When I was about seven my father gave me my first watch.”

I try hard not to get too worked up about celebrities. I don’t know them, and while I may enjoy what they produce, we only really know what they allow us to see. There are a few, however, who I would definitely want to sit down with and have a good old chat, and one of those is definitely Sandi Toksvig.

In her long-awaited memoirs, Between the Stops, the Danish polymath explores her life via the route of London’s Number 12 bus. As she travels this route from her home to the BBC, she shares with us things she’s learnt about the area, random historical titbits, and things about her endlessly fascinating life. This is a woman who not only made a career writing and being silly on screen, but also fights fiercely for equality in all forms, once canoed down the Zambezi, was holding Neil Armstrong’s secretary’s hand when the first steps were taken on the moon, and controlled the lights in one of London’s most prestigious theatres.

Her life has been insane, and her memory of facts, figures and fun is outstanding. A woman who knows everything except the meaning of the word “boredom”, she peppers the book with all sorts of anecdotes from her life – some hilarious, some harrowing – but alongside them are little vignettes about life in London, stories about some of history’s odder figures, and a healthy dose of common sense. Although, unless I’m ever lucky enough to befriend her, I’m never really going to know who she is, I feel that she really does let you in and hides very little in her thoughts, fears and beliefs.

From her turbulent school days, a university betrayal, the loss of her father, and the horrors of Brexit, she manages to keep a smile on her face and her eye keenly peeled for interesting information. She is, as one would expect, also especially good at digging up information about the women of history, most of whom have been unfairly forgotten. For every Nightingale are thousands of unnamed nurses, and for every Lovelace are generations of intelligent women who were forbidden from getting an education. For every Meaden, an army of shrewd businesswomen, and for every Streep, a gallon of performers we can’t recall. And as she explores London, a city I know fairly well, we learn how every single street contains dozens of stories we don’t even know we don’t know.

A wonderful book from one of the greatest writers, thinkers, comics and personalities of the modern age.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Mrs Death Misses Death” by Salena Godden (2021)

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“When I called for change, did you pass me by?”

Death comes for us all, although hopefully it waits until we’ve done all we wanted to do with our lives. In most fictional stories involving a physical character inhabiting the role, however, it’s a man or at least a male-esque figure who comes for us. But why is that? In her novel, Salena Godden hands the scythe over to a woman.

Mrs Death has had enough, and is looking for someone to unburden her conscience too. When a young London writer called Wolf buys her old desk from an antique shop, he discovers he can hear Mrs Death talking to him through it, ready to talk about all the people she’s known, the living and the dead. Wolf has experienced loss too; in fact he and Mrs Death met once before, when Wolf’s mother died in a house fire.

As their friendship blooms, they learn more about one another, the universe they inhabit, and Mrs Death comes to accept that, tired of the world though she may be, she holds the fate of every member of the human race, and will appear to us when we least expect her.

Stories about death and, especially, reapers (grim or otherwise) always fascinate me, so it was a no-brainer that this book would turn up on my reading list eventually. The idea of making Death female is great, and it’s amplified by the fact she is a black woman, often appearing as a homeless woman or hospital cleaner, meaning most people don’t even see her – at least they pretend they don’t. It’s a sad thought, but a clever concept for the story. The book combines poetry with prose, interviews, fiction and true stories to create a quilt of something really rather magical. There’s a particularly touching moment when we see Mrs Death collect David Bowie. There are references also to Tommy Cooper, Harambe, the victims of Myra Hindley, Sarah Reed, and the tragic, unsolved case of Inga Maria Hauser.

There’s no other word that really suits the book better than “beautiful”. Occasionally it’s funny, other times it’s genuinely moving. The poems catch you off guard, and the slight adjacent-to-reality nature of the text becomes heightened when contrasted with the scenes set very much in the real London. It’s clever, and contains some utterly jaw-dropping writing. I shall be pressing it into the hands of many a friend.

Death isn’t scary. Death is just doing her job.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Stone Heart Deep” by Paul Bassett Davies (2021)

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“The image is blurred.”

I’m sure there are many communities on small, remote islands that are entirely normal and well-balanced, thank you very much. Paul Bassett Davies here introduces us to one that is not.

Adam Budd is an investigative journalist approaching burn-out. After he wins a prestigious award, he learns that his estranged mother has died, leaving him her entire estate, which includes a derelict mansion, Stone Heart House, on a remote Scottish island. Not knowing anything about the house, Adam sets off to the island to find out if its worth keeping or if he can get a buyer. However, within moments of being on the island, he witnesses a car accident which kills a old woman, and is surprised when no one around him seems to have any urgency or concern about it. In fact, he quickly realises that whenever anything goes wrong, everyone remains entirely placid.

The calmness is eerie, and Adam finds himself caught in a community where everyone knows everyone else’s business, but they’re keeping something from him. Is it anything to do with the drilling platform controlled by a Norwegian company just off-shore? What does the island’s lawyer, Harriet, know about it and why can’t she leave the island, even though is desperate to take her young son away? Why does no one want to answer any of Adam’s questions? And, perhaps most importantly, why have so many children gone missing?

The book opens by setting Adam Budd up as a heroic figure – a journalist with morals and an ethical code that sees him trying to help, in particular, children who are being trafficked. He is then thrown into a situation unlike any he’s seen before as he arrives on the island. The tension ramps up neatly, and for a while nothing overly dramatic happens, and you realise that this is completely unsettling. There’s a weirdness hanging over the whole story, and the way the islanders seem to act like a hive mind feels like you, the reader, could turn around and find one of them behind you at that very moment also checking up on you.

Given literature is a place where emotions run high to move the story along, the fact that no one here seems to have any strong emotions is chilling. As we learn the truth behind the island, and how Adam might have just changed things for good, the tension only grows and it all becomes a bit Wicker Man. None of this is a complaint, by the way. The book gets under your skin and is one of those that will leave me feeling things for a long time to come.

A truly unnerving work.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“The Outward Urge” by John Wyndham (1959)

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“Ticker Troon emerged from his final interview filled with an emulsion of astonishment, elation, respect, and conviction that he needed refreshment.”

I was reading the other day about NASA’s Artemis Project, which intends to get people (the next man, and the first woman) onto the surface of the moon by 2025. It feels strange, sometimes, that the idea of travelling through space feels like something from our future, when no one’s been up to the moon for fifty years. Space travel is, for us right now, part of history. Time to turn to fiction instead.

The Troon family all have an innate desire to explore space. Ever since the first planes, one member of the family has been at the forefront of improvements, determined to push further outward. For every giant leap of mankind, a Troon is along for the ride. The Outward Urge charts five moments in time when humans are setting out for a new challenge, be it heading to the space station, the moon, Mars, Venus or beyond.

In one, we see Ticker Troon head to the first space station to orbit the Earth. In another, we find Geoffrey Trunho, trapped on Mars after a mission went very wrong. Along the way we learn of the fate of Earth, the political machinations that lead to a new space race, and how the Troon family are always in the vanguard.

Released ten years before the first actual moon landing, Wyndham doesn’t seem to realise how close he was to the first momentous occasion. He, however, doesn’t have people on the moon for a much longer time. The stories take place at gaps of fifty years, starting in 1994 with the launch of the space station, and putting men on the moon in 2044. He does, however, also give a whole alternate future/history for humanity. In his timeline, the northern hemisphere descended into war and was rendered a wasteland of nuclear fallout, allowing Brazil to become the world’s biggest superpower, threatened by the rising Australia. This is a really interesting take on how the Cold War could’ve gone, as to begin with the space race is still between Russia and the US, with Britain holding much more power than it really ever has in reality. The British might’ve explored the seas way back when, but we never really got a grip on space.

Occasionally dry, but generally entertaining, I find myself once again in a position where I want to love Wyndham’s work, but they can’t all be The Midwich Cuckoos. He’s either brilliant, or just fine, and this is one of the latter. The alternate history stuff is great, and probably better than the hard science, and it’s always hilarious to read science fiction written around this time, as no one ever predicts the Internet, but everyone still smokes openly and relies on physical paper for messages. For people who love good, hard science fiction, however, it’s an absolute stellar story.

Humans will always long to explore, and there are few I’d want captaining the ship more than a Troon.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“The Body In The Library” by Agatha Christie (1942)

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“Mrs Bantry was dreaming.”

A library with a dead body in it these days feels like something of a cliché. However, according to Agatha Christie’s own foreword, it was already a cliché in the 1940s. I’m always surprised when I find I’ve not got a review of a certain Christie on the blog already, as it means I’ve not read it in a long time. In this case, it’s been over a decade since I picked this one up, which at least meant I was coming in with fresh eyes and no clue whodunnit. Let’s dive in.

Colonel and Mrs Bantry awake one morning to discover the body of a young woman in their library. Neither of them has ever seen her before, and there’s no obvious clue as to who she is or how she got there. While the police are quick to arrive, Dolly Bantry only wants one person to come and help: Miss Marple.

Rumours begin to spread around the village about the girl’s identity, and when a second body is discovered in a burnt out car near a quarry, Miss Marple becomes convinced that the two murders are connected. As the police circle and everyone seems suspiciously linked to a dance hall where the girl worked, Miss Marple must race to the right conclusion before the wrong person is arrested.

Inexplicably, this is only the third Miss Marple book – and only her second novel-length outing – but she already feels very established. She’s perhaps a bit less prickly than in her first outing as Christie settles in to the character, and there are actually great swathes of the book where she’s not even present, and the police officers take centre stage. Although the police trust her and have relied on her before, it takes a long time before she is actually asked to join in officially.

As with everything Christie did, nothing is quite as it seems, and the solution hinges on some small evidence that is easily missed (unless you’re paying attention very closely), and people behaving very stupidly. It’s one of the shorter novels, so I don’t think many people get fleshed out quite as much as in others, but there is still a certain liveliness to most of them. There is an ongoing theme of familial pressure, and the desperate things people will do in order to escape their lives, themes that still resonate today.

All in all, the title is definitely more classic than the plot, but it’s got some nice ideas, and stacks up well with others of the era.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

“Agatha Christie: An Autobiography” by Agatha Christie (1977)

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“One of the luckiest things that can happen to you in life is to have a happy childhood.”

I started tracking all the books I’ve read at the beginning of 2011, and while this means this milestone is entirely arbitrary, but this is the one thousandth book I’ve read since then. I had to choose a title that would be meaningful and I was sure I’d enjoy. There only seemed to be one candidate.

Agatha Christie began her memoirs in 1950 and wrote them over the next sixteen years. However, once complete they weren’t published until the year after her death, in 1977. My love for Christie is well documented and one of the things most people know about me, and many were surprised I hadn’t got round to this hefty tome yet. It felt right to do it now, and I’m phenomenally glad I did.

The fact that Agatha Christie is the best-selling novelist of all time sometimes strikes me as the least interesting thing about her. She lived an absolutely fascinating life. She was a novelist, a poet, a fantasist, a nurse, a dispenser, an archaeologist, a playwright, a musician, a world-traveller and much more besides. In her beautiful memoirs, she charts a happy childhood growing up in the tail end of the Victorian era, though her flirtatious teenage years, her two marriages, her role in both World Wars and, of course, how her writing career grew and grew. Those who have rejected her books as being “old-fashioned” will never know quite how funny she was, and this humour is here as well. She writes passionately about lost love, heartbreak, war, and family, but there’s always a twinkle in her eye and another silly anecdote just on the horizon. The most surprising thing to me was the extraordinary number of stories she includes about toilets and breasts.

No one, I don’t think, could claim she wasn’t a product of her time, and she was never a leading feminist figure through any direct action – there isn’t a single mention of the changes in women’s suffrage, or indeed any politics at all – and she was from a wealthy, white family. Her memoirs are thick in complaints and comments about various domestic staff she has known, but while some of them clearly annoyed her, there is a great deal of love about others. She understands that everyone deserves respect, and admires those who know how to do a good job, especially maids, childminders and cooks. She also seems to have been one of the good people, showing disgust and horror when she meets her first Nazi, and having nothing but good words to say about Muslims and people from Arabic countries.

Christie’s memoirs show her as a fascinating, excited, stubborn and curious woman. She had a strong imagination that lasted her whole life, still talking to her childhood imaginary friends well into adulthood, and was well-liked by most people she met. Although shy in new situations and never enjoying smoking, drinking and large parties, she knew when she was getting the raw end of a deal and would fight her corner, and she was never ashamed of trying to do what was right, even if others didn’t care for her actions. The only disappointments I would have about the book centre around the omission of any mention of her fabled disappearance (although I knew it was never discussed), and not enough information on her books. She never thought herself an author proper, and while there are some nice passages on her writing career, including how she invented Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, which of her books she likes and dislikes the most, how and why she went into stage writing, and dealing with her early publishers, she seems uninterested in sharing much more. As Ariadne Oliver says in Dead Man’s Folly, what is there to say about writing? The only way to write is to have an idea and then force yourself to write it. Christie, I’d imagine, felt much the same.

An absolutely wonderful read for anyone who loves Agatha Christie, or just wants to know a bit more about her, and I can guarantee you’ll come away with a great big soft spot for her. One of the finest memoirs ever penned.

Looking for something else? Try my novels, The Atomic Blood-Stained Bus (the story of a cannibal and an ex-god) and The Third Wheel (a comedic alien invasion tale), test yourself with a quiz from my book Questioning Your Sanity, or visit my website and I’ll cultivate you a whole quiz on whatever subjects you like. If you just want more reviews, guide yourself around my blog with the navigation bar and find hundreds of reviews at your fingertips.

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