Wednesday, 12 December 2007

cathedrals, murder, Italians, war, spies, and Michelle Pfeiffer

Run, walk, skip, or jump to the nearest cinema, DVD rental store, or Amazon – but do see “Stardust”! It is brilliant. All right chaps yes, it is a fantasy and it is a love story – but there are swords, Robert De Niro, and you get to look at Michelle Pfeiffer for ninety minutes, what could be better than that? At the ending you can do nothing but smile and a give a secret sigh. It is so imaginative and original. I loved it.

I have been reading in a joyful and decadent flurry since my return from the states with my case full of books:

The English Assassin” by Daniel Silva: good brain candy/ spy-type thriller with art restoration thrown in.

Mist” by Stephen King: what is there to say? If you are a Stephen King fan, read on. I do not like ‘horror’ books, but I love the way King writes. If you don’t like King, don’t read it.

“Knife of Dreams
” by Robert Jordon: I cannot even tell you how many years I have been waiting for this series to BE OVER! Every book since number seven I said I wasn’t going to read any more; you see me reading number eleven. The characters and world he created for this series will not let me walk away. The best I have been able to do is to not buy each one until it is in paperback. Each one is a huge book (800 pages or better) and you stay right there until the end. If you like Tolkien you will like this. That being said, this is a series where you need to start at the beginning in order to have any idea what is going on. And yes, I will be there for number twelve. My big fear is that one of us will die before he finishes it!

“World Without End
” by Ken Follett is a sequel to “Pillars of the Earth” but you really do not need to have read the first one. It is excellent. Another one where you become very invested with the characters. The first book was about the building of the cathedral and this follows the people in the town and the cathedral some hundreds of years later.

True Evil” by Greg Iles is yummy. I read it straight through. It’s a murder thriller with the most interesting plot line. Really, yummy.

by James Patterson is another Alex Cross book. Eh… I’m a Patterson fan but the Alex Cross books have become too simplistic for me. Nothing is a surprise and the characters are two-dimensional.

” by Kate Mosse is another yummy one. It’s one of those of the De Vinci code genre but with a heroine and some past life complications thrown in. Just good fun. I read this one straight through as well.

Eat, pray, love” by Elizabeth Gilbert is a book for Welshcakes and jmb! This is the story of one young woman’s search for love, spirituality, and pleasure. She travels Italy, Bali, and India to find her answers. Her writing is engaging and fun. I will say about 2/3 of the way through I did stop to read another few books and I am finishing it between other reads. Worth the read.

"Faith of the Fallen" by Terry Goodkind is another 800-pager. This is also part of a fantasy series. The plot is a bit unoriginal (the bad Communist, by another name, against the good Capitalist); but the characters and the magic is compelling.



Ian Lidster said...

Michelle Pfeiffer makes the rest of life seem just a little bit more worthwhile. I don't normally fantasize about celluloid characters, but for her I make an exception.

lady macleod said...


Good choice!!!!

thank you for coming by.

Richard Havers said...

Lady M, how would you right the Follett's out of ten? I've been tempted in store, but need some pointers....thanks in anticipation

Kaycie said...

I do love Michelle Pfeiffer. I think I'll have to go see it.

I used to be a very big Stephen King fan, but real life got scary enough for me back in my twenties.

Ellee Seymour said...

I envy your time to be able to read all these books.

jmb said...

So that's why you've been quiet. Reading.
I like Daniel Silva but his books are a bit the same after a while,still a good escape.

The Ken Follett is next for me.

I love Greg Iles and have all his books.

I'm reading Labyrinth at the moment, half way through. Kate Moss was at the Writers' Festival here about two years ago. You came the wrong year.

Don't do SF or Fantasy.

Will look out the Elizabeth Gilbert one. I have seen it but didn't take too much notice previously.

Of course I will rent Stardust. I like Michelle Pfeiffer too.

So did you decide where you are spending Christmas yet?

lady macleod said...


I think I would put Follett right up there at 9 - with the caveat that it is an historical novel. I think a lot depends on your taste.

Let me know if you read it, and how you like it.

thank you for coming by.

lady macleod said...


Do let me know if you like "Stardust".

I TOTALLY understand your comment about King!!!

thank you for coming by.

lady macleod said...


I know! I am happy beyond reason to have the time, and THE BOOKS. I have always been a constant reader, but I had no idea how much I would miss the constant availability of books until last year. Trust me, I am not taking it for granted.

thank you for coming by.

lady macleod said...


This was my first Iles novel, but I tell you as soon as I was done my first impulse was to go to the book store and see what else he had written. Alas... no bookstore, but I have put his name on my "list".

I think you will enjoy the Gilbert book. My only trouble was her comparative youth - some of her travails you and I have already passed through and beyond. But she writes well and has a lot to say. I thought of you because of her stay in and praise of Italy.

Not yet, but I am still leaning toward Paris. I spent yesterday morning looking for an AFFORDABLE hotel. My goodness they have become ridiculous! I think I found a place by the airport. A real luxury hotel but with with holiday prices. I assume the business clientele are thin on the ground around then. The metro goes right into the city, so I'm thinking that is a good deal - especially with the recent "troubles".

thank you for coming by.

Anonymous said...

Good choices all round - I think I will do this as well. The only one I couldn't be bothered with was the Kate Mosse/Labyrinth twaddle...

lady macleod said...


Good man, go for it.

thank you for coming by.

Richard Havers said...

Lady M. I've just ordered 'Pillars' I'll start with that. I've met ken a few times but never read any of his books, so I will let you know.

Years ag I read Edward Rutherford's Sarum which I enjoyed. In part I suspect because I've always had a fascination with church building.

Sparx said...

Oh, thanks for the recommends, I'll order a couple of the books and try to see Stardust too. I'm always asking people for book recommendations and you'd be amazed how infrequently they get passed on. I've not read Greg Iles and your other choices seem v sound so will give him a read.

We've just discovered Christopher Brookmyre - as a fellow Scot I'm sure you already know him but he's so very funny and clever and good that we're buying up his whole back catalogue right now. If you don't know him (as if) he's funny and wry and writes gripping thrillers with loads of intellectual references thrown in... plus humour.