Double Review: Woman to Woman and She’s the One (Cathy Kelly)

cathykelly

Books 36 and 37 of my 100 book challenge

Woman to Woman

Aisling and Jo, who has been friends since their early twenties, seem to have it all in life. Aisling is married to Michael, and is the mother of twins. Jo, who chose the career path, is a successful fashion journalist, who is dating a very handsome, if irresponsible, photographer. They really seem to have it together – until Aisling finds a receipt for lingerie in her husband’s jacket she certainly didn’t receive, and Jo finds out that she is pregnant. Soon both ladies are single and rejected and have to rebuild their lives.

Aisling is forced to return to work, something she has been putting off for ages. She has to rebuild her shattered self-image, and learn how to date again, as she is all of a sudden not in the marriage she thought stable, if a little boring. When she meets Sam, he seems perfect – but is this attractive man really as good as he seems?

Jo is hurt and angered when Richard rejects their child and her. She is determined to become a successful single mother, even though she is terrified of the idea. Her family and friends are solidly behind her, but she realises how difficult life might become when she travels to New York with her attractive boss, Mark Denton. She is certain of the attraction between her and Mark, but when she confesses to be with child, he starts acting brotherly towards her. Has Mark been put off by the idea of another man’s child, or is he simply feeling lousy for hitting on a woman who has enough problems to deal with?

Rating:

6/10

This book is quite old (it was published in 1997), so although there are places where it seems out of date, I really enjoyed it. It is what is expected of its genre – predictable, emotional and heart-warming. Both women win in the end, and even though they put in a whole lot of work to make it happen, you suspected the end of the story for a bit. Aisling’s eventual ending surprised and impressed me, as it really isn’t what you would expect. All in all, not bad, and I will probably read it again.

She’s the One

For Dee, life has always been riddled with issues about her weight. A big, beautiful girl, Dee only sees herself as fat, and has the low self-confidence that goes with it. When her fiancé Gary leaves her, and she doesn’t get the promotion she wanted, life seems at an all-time low. She is forced to work with Isabel, who got the job she wanted, and even though Isabel seems nice, Dee doesn’t trust her in the beginning.

Isabel returns to Ireland after her separation from her flighty husband, bringing her two daughters with her. Naomi is no problem at all, but Robin blames her mother for her parents’ separation and is impossible at best. Isabel meets Jack Carter at a office party, and is immediately drawn to the big, intelligent and kind man. The only problem is Jack is married to Elizabeth, a beautiful, drug-addicted socialite.

Will the two ladies be able to sort out their lives, and co-exist?

Rating:

6.5/10

This book is superior to Woman to Woman because it tackles so many issues – Affairs, weight, money, and bullying at the workplace. Cathy Kelly manages to write Dee as a self-consious girl who only needs to realise her own power, and eventually does. She brings Isabel lovely to the book as well – a struggling mother who has to cope with her own grief, financial troubles, and a new relationship which promises to bring more stress than all her other issues combined. Each topic of the book is explored lovely without making the book boring or stretched out. Well done, Ms Kelly!

Advertisements

Book Challenge Progress

5161-all-the-secrets-of-the-world-are-contained-in-books-read_380x280_width

When I started my book challenge, I really didn’t think how many books a hundred books are. That said, I am rather impressed with how far I have come. I am busy with my 39th book (Nora Roberts – The Reef).

Part of the challenge was to be exposed to new authors, as well as new genres. Katie Fford, Lewis Carol and Stephen King came on my list, and I am happy that I expanded my horizon. I still read my favorite authors, Nora Roberts and JK Rowling.

The Book challenge is too advanced at this point to mention all of the books I have read on here – but please go check out some of my previous posts about it.

Let me know if you know of any good books to try 🙂

Weekend and stuff (and people that irritate me)

Good morning. It seems that Monday is trying to be particularly irritating again. And succeeding.

Mondays-Suck

I was on leave on Friday, and it was divine to just to do nothing. I had a haircut, and felt awesome afterwards. I then met some friends at a local Italian restaurant/pub, to catch up. Then I went to a club in Edenvale, Doors, to see my friend that is visiting from Japan. It is great to see someone living their dream and being so happy about it!

Saturday, I just went to the shops, and then slept. That night I watched Rock of Ages. I wanted to watch this movie for quite some time, but I am glad I never went to the cinema for it. It just wasn’t that good.

Book Withdrawal

I read the Villa by Nora Roberts this weekend. I finished it on Sunday afternoon, and then immediately went into book withdrawal. It was really good, and now I am pining for it. It has been such a long time since I felt like this. Watch out for its great review sometime!

tumblr_m6wuwdVgTy1qiubilo1_500

Exercise

I couldn’t exercise this weekend, as I had a nasty bout of flu. I am mostly better, and will be able to start gymming again tomorrow. It has been hard not to go, but I think I am better now because I just gave my body time to heal.

Fake Friends

I am really disappointed in the people in my life right now. People who cancels on a big event after they said they would be there really sucks. You call yourself a friend? And this just because you are angry at something completely unrelated. Grow up, little girl.

Double Review: One Summer and Second Nature by Nora Roberts

Books 34 and 35 of my 100 book challenge

bc6e8125567814b5f0300b084e93be13

Second Nature

Lee Radcliff, a composed celebrity journalist, is set to interview reclusive horror writer Hunter Brown. She heads to a literary festival where she pretends to be an aspiring writer in order to get close to him. He catches her out, somewhat ridiculously, and is furious with her for not being truthful about her intentions. He refuses to do an interview with her unless she agrees to go camping with him. She grudgingly accepts, but now the question remains: will she be able to withstand their attraction, and survive the outdoors?

Rating: 4/10

Really, I keep telling myself not to read mindless rabble, but I always do. My only excuse is that it is truly easy reading, and demands no spectacular display of concentration after a day’s hard work. Lee Radcliff contains more substance than the characters in the usual gushy romance novels Roberts used to write, but she is still pretty dependant on the thought of a man in her life.

One Summer

The sequel to Second Nature, One Summer has quick reappearances by Lee and Hunter. One Summer tells the tale of celebrity photographer, Bryan Mitchell, and Shade Colby, a photographer who made name for himself by taking action photos in the warzone. They are commissioned to travel across America, chronicling the summer together. Even though they disagree on everything, they remain attracted to each other. Will they be able to survive the summer together?

Rating: 5/10

Superior to its prequel, I enjoyed this book more. Shade is truly a messed up guy, and his struggles are achingly real. I felt for his scars, and his inability to act on his emotions. The main characters’ journey to each other seemed realistic, and even possible. Of the two books, I would recommend this one to people.

Book Review: The Mystery of Mercy Close (Marian Keyes)

mercy close img

Book: 33/100

Helen Walsh’s life has fallen apart. As part of the economic crisis that is gripping Ireland, Helen’s job as a private investigator has come to a halt. She is forced to move back to her parents after her beloved flat is taken from her.

When Jay Parker shows up with a very urgent job for Helen, she should be thrilled. However, she isn’t very willing to accommodate him, as they are ex-lovers, and she thinks him a conman. She reluctantly agrees to start looking into things. She is searching for a missing member of the band Laddz, set to launch a comeback after their boy band went south years ago. Hunting for the one-time superstar, Helen ends up in Mercy Close, the area in which he lives. She adores his house, with the frightening wall paper, even though it terrifies everyone else.

Helen must also deal with her current boyfriend Arnie, his ex-wife and his three children. They try to make their relationship happen, but they never have any privacy.

Helen must also deal with her recurrent bouts of depression. Being hospitalized at a stage, she tries to contact her old shrink again when she realizes it is getting out of hand again. Her psychiatrist contacts her, and manages to persuade Helen to not commit suicide.

The question now stands: Will Helen find Wayne in time for the Laddz reunion, and will her relationship with Arnie withstand all the pressure?

Rating: 7/10

This truly enjoyable read is truly Marian Keyes. She writes as delightfully as ever, bringing the Helen Walsh we have read about in the other Walsh books into the spotlight. Each Walsh sister is ridiculously messed up, mostly because of the Irish lifestyle they live and Mammy Walsh’s inability to raise her daughters properly. The book is hilarious, witty and funny, but at the same time manages to confront the topic of depression. I would suggest this read to most people, as it isn’t really a romance novel, but more a novel about a real person’s life.

Weekend and Stuff (and things that annoys me right now)

tumblr_mb67h5jGMG1r7d8e0o1_500

Hello

This weekend was nice. How was yours?

I am not feeling capable of being positive today, or even writing.

Friday we went to Mugg and Bean to catch up with an old friend. It was really lovely, and the food was divine (Chilli Chicken Cheese Burger – yum)

On Saturday it was my little sister’s birthday braai – I felt a hundred years old compared to the 16/17 year olds that infested our home.

Diet

It was horrible. I ate, and ate, and ate. I couldn’t stop. And I couldn’t even eat healthy. Nope. Cake and sweets and carbs and everything. I am sick of food right now. Not eating much today. The exercise went well. I did bike on Friday and Sunday, but as they say, you can’t outrun a bad diet.

You can't out-exercise a bad diet

1044399_10151687843397726_1824941008_n

Book Challenge

Is going well, but went AWOL with the power cuts last week. I managed to finish a book and start on a new one, but everything just went slower. I am contemplating reading the Divergent series, just to see what it is about. Any comments?

Things that annoy me right now:

The Universe

If there is a slightest possibility of a meteor shower, I swear it would head straight to me. Everything is out to injure or annoy me. Stubbed toes, traffic, electricity, food, and more specifically, water bottles making my entire gym bag, and the clothes in it, wet. What did I do to deserve this? No idea.

The CRAPBERRY

I hate this phone. So much. it is going dead every five minutes since Friday. HATE HATE HATE. I can’t wait for a new phone. I will reverse over it, just to make sure it knows how I feel. I might even take a video.

Girls, and the attention they give to men.

I, like many straight females, enjoy a good flirt with an attractive man. HOWEVER, it isn’t justifiable to flirt with a man with a GIGANTIC ego, increase his ego, dumb yourself down, and then pretend you are a self-respecting female. Also – this social network love-struck people – grow up. No one wants to see on BBM/Twitter/Facebook how much you love your boyfriend. Call him, tell him. Easy as that – and then you might still have friends on all the sites you so religiously plague.

Friday’s 5 Favourites (Superhero Movies)

The Avengers

Possibly my favourite movie of all time

From Marvel, The Avengers is an initiative of S.H.I.E.L.D to protect earth from extra-terrestrial creatures. When Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) brother arrives, Iron Man, The Hulk, Captain America, Thor, The Black Widow and Hawkeye team up despite their differences to save planet earth. The movie had EVERYTHING. I loved it super much. There was humor, sadness, drama, danger, anything you could think of. I watched it in a full cinema, and the people broke out in spontaneous applause at the end. I will watch this movie again, and again, and again, as it always amuses and entertains me.

Man of Steel

man_of_steel___wallpaper_4__blue__by_visuasys-d65dwim

Man-of-Steel_01

The newest superhero flick to arrive, Henry Cavill stars as the iconic Clark Kent, homeboy from Kansas with an alien parentage. Cavill’s performance revamped the franchise, and I cannot wait to see what comes next. He is such a perfect superman – not only does he have the required chiseled looks; he perfectly acts out the weighty responsibility Kal-El has.

Iron Man Trilogy

Robert Downey Jnr. portrays Tony Stark, or Iron Man, a superhero suit he built using his prodigious skill as both a scientist and engineer. The third installment was released earlier this year, mostly to rave reviews, but I didn’t enjoy the last one as much as the previous two. What made Tony Stark so awesome is his humor, his pigheadedness, and his ability to be a hero when he really isn’t built to be.

 rs_300x300-130422122234-600.ironman3.cm.42213

The Amazing Spiderman

I resisted watching this movie for quite some time, but when I finally did, I was so impressed. Andrew Garfield managed to portray Peter Parker really well. The storyline was full of adventure, anger and sadness. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the entire film, and can see myself watching it again.

Thor

This was my favorite superhero movie for a long time – but when I started watching other movies (older and newer), it started slipping down the ranks. I still love it though, and I really, really like Chris Hemsworth. But if its second movie is without an impressive performance, I will be forced to move it off the list.

Thor

220px-Thor_poster

Needless to say, there is tons of superhero movies not mentioned on here. Since it is a 5 favorites theme, it wouldn’t have worked to mention all of those I wanted to. A very specific trilogy, the latest Batman series, comes to mind, and nearly kicked Thor out of the top five. It remains some of the better films I have ever seen, but I had to mention Thor, as it jump started my love for superheroes.

Opinions/comments are welcome!

🙂

Birthday wishes

The greatest living human being is having his birthday today. Mr President, Nelson Mandela, happy happy on your 95th birthday. We love you. I hope you get better soon, but even if you can’t, you gave enough to our country to deserve peace. You are the example of everything that is right in this country.

nelson-mandela

Nelson Mandela day is becoming a popular event across the world. People are urged to give 67 minutes of their time to the less fortunate, to honor Mr. Mandela’s 67 years as a political prisoner. The Company I work for has chosen to help paint a hospice, and today we will head deep into Soweto to go help out the needy.

If you are doing something to help someone today, let me know J

PS: Congratulations to my little sister, Melissa, who is turning 17 today! I love you, and I am hoping you love your gift, little hipster 😉