Below is a list of our book reviews.

  • Intimations

    Zadie Smith

    Zadie Smith’s ‘Intimations’, like all her other writing, did not disappoint. These six short essays explore her deeply personal thoughts and observations made during the first lockdown in response to such unprecedented times. Smith’s writing is sharp, intelligent and thought-provoking. Her musings on suffering, young people and why authors write, were particularly engaging and insightful. […]

  • The Nightingale

    Kristin Hannah

    This one was a tearjerker. Set in France during WW2, it tells a raw and honest story about women during wartime. We see what the Nazi occupation of France meant for the women who were left behind and how they had to fight their own battles at home, doing whatever they could to survive. Isabelle’s […]

  • My Name Is Why

    Lemm Sissay

    Chilling, uplifting, emotional, authentic, it makes you want to hug your children close.  This book is one of the best memoirs I have read – one man’s simple testimony of what it was like for a black boy to grow up in care in the 70’s, care being the pivotal word as it was mainly […]

  • The Girl with the Louding Voice

    Abi Daré

    Adunni is a 14 year old Nigerian girl.  Her mother urges her to get her education so that she can assert her independence – and find her louding voice.  However, when her mother dies suddenly, her impoverished father breaks his promise, pulling her out of school and selling her to Morufu as his third wife.  […]

  • On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous

    Ocean Vuong

    15This is a heartbreakingly poetic novel that painfully observed and explored themes of identity, displacement, addiction, race, homosexuality and class. Little Dog tells his own story of family history, rooted in Vietnam during times of war, through a letter to his illiterate mother. His telling of a story, that he knows will not be heard, […]

  • An American Marriage

    Tayari Jones

    This is so much more than a moving, brilliantly told love story.  It also shines a spotlight on the inequalities of race, gender and class through the eyes of three engaging characters. Roy and Celestial are newly weds with their life ahead of them.  He is from a small-town, ambitious to move onwards and upwards, […]

  • Never Let Me Go

    Kazuo Ishiguro

    This book was stunning. It was a truly beautiful story about love, friendship and humanity. The story is an eerie dystopia about students reared at Hailsham boarding school, where their lives are already set out for them for a very specific purpose. The students lack awareness and knowledge of the real world on many fronts, […]

  • The Dutch House

    Ann Patchett

    I loved this book from American writer, Ann Patchett.  It is a compelling family story stretching over decades and centering around siblings Danny and Maeve and the extravagant Dutch House.  Their  father, a self-made property magnate bought the ostentatious mansion as a surprise for his wife.  A deeply charitable woman, she is appalled and ultimately […]

  • You Will Be Safe Here

    Damian Barr

    This vivid novel focuses on two significant periods in South Africa’s history, the Boer War and the repeal of arpartheid laws.  The first half of the book follows the story of Mrs van der Watt and her son Fred who are brutally imprisoned in Bloemfontein Camp after the British seize their farm.  As she negotiates […]

  • Little Disasters

    Sarah Vaughan

    This is one of those books where you read the first two pages and then think  ‘good, I am going to enjoy this’!  The premise is that the perfect mother, Jess, brings her baby into A&E.  Her friend is the paediatrican on call and is troubled by the circumstances and struggles to resolve her professional […]

  • Before We Were Yours

    Lisa Wingate

    I thought this might be a bit light but actually it was gripping, mostly because it is based on true events.   This is the story of Georgia Tann and the Tennessee Children’s Home Society.  What started as an organisation in the 1920s that rescued children from terrible circumstances became a highly profitable trade in children.  […]