Thursday, 12 March 2015

Mother/Daughter Bookswap 2. February

So this month's books were "Thieves like us" for me and "Jane Eyre" for Beth. After the roaring success of our first reads, what did we think of February's fare?

"Thieves like us" by Stephen Cole.

Here's what Beth said:

A group of teenagers are recruited to steal stuff. Bit rude, but lots of fun – and sometimes magic! Oooh! B+

Here's what I thought:

Action heists are not quite my thing, so this was a bit of a struggle for me. This wasn't helped by the fact that Coldhardt, the criminal millionaire who recruited the malcontent teenagers was pretty manipulative and not above using the young girls' sexuality to further his ends, which I found a bit creepy. Having said that, some of the action sequences were very pacy (particularly the dramatic rescue at the beginning) and the hero, Jonah, was very engaging. I also liked Tye his love interest, as she was a fairly rounded and interesting character. And I get the appeal of kids breaking and entering, deciphering codes, kicking bad guys and driving fast cars. Beth tells me that by the end of the series Coldhardt is much more sympathetic but I'll take her word for it.  I quite enjoyed this in the end, but have no burning desire to follow the fortunes of the gang any further.

"Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte.

Here's what I said:

Another story of an abused young woman growing up to take control of her life, it follows the orphaned Jane from the home of her aunt, to school and then to be a governess. Possibly the first feminist novel, with a wonderful heroine, slightly dubious hero and fabulous Gothic setting. A+++

Here's what Beth thought:

I really liked the character of Jane Eyre and I enjoyed the mystery of it. I didn't quite like Mr Rochester so much and I thought the ending was a bit convenient. Overall, I enjoyed it.

(Note - she's not wrong about Mr Rochester. Can I also say how much I enjoyed her outrage at Jane's mistreatment by Mr Brocklehurst?)

And now, the moment cannot be put off. We have found "Deadlands" and I will have to face the zombies. Beth, meanwhile, has Graham Greene's "The Heart of the Matter". I wonder how she'll react to all that intense Catholicism.

Back next month to let you know the results.

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