I LOVE a good map! From the floor layouts in murder mysteries that you pore over , looking for how A could have gotten to B’s room and killed them with a candlestick, to the maps of Tolkien’s Middle Earth where the topography is almost 3D as you trace the hobbits’ journey to Isengard.,
Here is an accompanying map for ‘The Ancient Nine’ by Ian K.Smith, character bios and some information about the man himself with links to all his media platforms.
So this week I have decided to employ a tactic to help me read smarter rather than harder as I seem to have hit a wall of books-not unpleasant, definitely my preferred way to sustain an injury! On the suggestion of an equally book bound friend, she recommended filling a mason jar(see below also quick plug for my Insta feed!) with slips of paper containing all the books I have yet to read.
And to the left is said jar, not allowed to pass on or replace a title when it has been selected. I was genuinely excited to submit to this random no questions asked selection technique and as a result have read 2 books this week.
The first is ‘Everything is Lies‘ by Helen Callaghan(author of the bestselling ‘Dear Amy’) and ‘The Night She Died‘ by JennyBlackhurst (bestselling author of ‘How I lost You’).
‘Everything is Lies’ is about a 26 year old architect, Sophie, who juggles a high pressure job with her relationship with her parents-off grid hippies who never married and live a bohemian lifestyle.
I may be wrong but I think this is the first book by Lucy Clarke that I have read and with apologies for using the standard phrase, it was unputdownable (no other word will do).
The cover is menacing, there is a modern looking staircase with a shadow of an ambiguous looking person on the landing between the 2 flights of steps, blood red title words and recommendations by none other than C.L Taylor and Clare Macintosh-high praise indeed-so even before starting it, you are aware that this is going to be a thrill ride of a book.
In it, the narrator, Elle, has returned to the clifftop home that she has bought with the advance in her first, wildly successful novel. It is close to where her sisters and her family live, it’s a familiar environment that she craves after her marriage has floundered and expectations are high for her follow-up book.
After having holidayed in France and on her sister’s suggestion, renting her house on Air Bnb for much a needed financial boost, the moment she comes back to her home is so well described. It’s her home, yet not her home, someone has been living there, but there is little trace of the family that booked it. And yet….there are subtle changes, tiny things that would be overlooked by many but not Elle.