Friday, 25 November 2016

Mini Reviews | Star and Sixpence • The A to Z of You and Me

Star and Sixpence #1
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publication Date: November 5th, 2015
Publishers: Simon & Schuster UK

SNOWDROPS AT STAR AND SIXPENCE tells the story of two sisters, who have inherited a pub in the countryside from their late father. The villager's nosiness and village council's strong influence on people amaze the Londoners and they have more hurdles to cross in order to run a smooth business.

I heartily enjoyed reading this novella, it's cheerful, soothing and immensely warm like a lit fireplace on a wintry day. In other words, the story is everything that gorgeous cover promises. I've a penchant for Christmas stories set in English villages, so the backdrop was the prime reason I enjoyed this book. The demeanour and actions of locals added more charm to it. Even though it's a swift-paced story, I was able to savour it; Sam and Nessie's bantering, the prospect of budding romances and the villager's shenanigans had me hooked to the story. Perfect when you're yearning for a cosy, quick and light festive read.

The A to Z of You and Me by James Hannah
Genre: Contemporary
Publication Date: May 3rd, 2016
Publishers: Sourcebooks Landmark (Thank You!)

This book took me by a surprise! The last two times I tried reading it, I couldn't peruse more than a single chapter; but now when I willed myself to read further, I had become reluctant to put it down. THE A TO Z OF YOU AND ME is a devastatingly sad and distressing story; and yet very compulsive too. It is the story of Ivo - a forty-year-old man awaiting his death in a hospice. His thoughtless actions in his youth have brought him to the deathbed so earlier in his life. However, it's not just that Ivo is worried about, but of a special relationship, which his actions had messed up beyond all repair. To keep the mind active, Ivo is playing a game as suggested by the nurse. He thinks of a body part starting from A to Z and tries to remember any incident or story related to it.

Initially, I thought the story was convoluted, as I had trouble following Ivo's disarrayed pattern of thoughts. But, the more I got to know him, it felt easier to understand the story. It is more than what the premise tells us - his story narrates the dangerousness of drug usage. His memories take readers to the flashback of his life, which was full of wrongdoings and remorse. It narrates how Ivo and his friends wrecked up their lives under the influence of drugs and are overwhelmed with guilt now, and of how Ivo lost the girl he ever loved. I have mixed feelings towards the characters in this book. While I really felt for Ivo's girlfriend, I could neither sympathise nor be kind to Ivo. I kept turning the pages to know what happened to the girl, but never to know what happened to him as it was inevitable. The author also casts light on the importance of forgiveness in this story. The hospice backdrops are gloomy, which readers may find overwhelming and the storyline too pitiful. But, if you're interested in such plots, this book is definitely worth a read, since THE A TO Z OF YOU AND ME is definitely one of a kind.

Have you read any of these? What have you been reading lately? Did you start reading Christmas Books? 
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1 comment:

  1. The A to Z of you and me sounds like a really good read!