Takenote March Book Review

HOT READ - “Grown Ups“ by Marian Keyes

Irish author Marian Keyes has a huge following of fans who eagerly await her new releases, and this entertaining story about the Casey family will not disappoint. Keyes is a master of creating believable, relatable characters and the Casey family are engaging from the very beginning.
Johnny Casey, his two brothers Ed and Liam, their beautiful talented wives and all their kids spend a lot of time together - celebrating birthdays, anniversaries and weekends away. They’re a happy family; Johnny's wife, Jessie – who has the most money – insists on it. All is well until Ed’s wife Cara gets concussion and can’t keep her thoughts to herself. One careless remark at Johnny’s birthday party starts Cara spilling all the family secrets.
This is a compelling and heart warming read, full of the wit and humour Keyes is known for while also touching on the darker side of family undercurrents and relationships. Highly recommended and available now from Malcolm’s Takenote Mairangi Bay.


“Into the Fire“ by Gregg Hurwitz

Evan Smoak, the Nowhere Man, is back for the fifth time in this latest, fast-paced novel by Gregg Hurwitz.
Before he died, Max Merriweather’s cousin had entrusted him with a secret. Now Max is in danger and only the Nowhere Man can help him. But like a hydra, every time Evan thinks the danger has passed, another set of bad guys raise their heads and neither Evan or Max can be sure if their opponents are cops or the Russian mob. With the help of his 16-year old protégée Joey, Evan works his way through hugely daunting obstacles to an outstanding finale.


“Long Bright River” by Liz Moore

In a Philadelphia neighbourhood filled with drugs and prostitution, two once-inseparable sisters find themselves at odds. One, Kacey, lives on the street in the grip of addiction. The other, Mickey, walks those same streets on her police beat. They don’t speak anymore, but Mickey never stops worrying about her sibling. Then Kacey disappears suddenly and at the same time a mysterious string of murders begins in Mickey’s district. Mickey becomes dangerously obsessed with finding the culprit – and her sister – before it’s too late. This is an extremely well-written, gripping suspense novel that is also a moving story of sisters, addiction and the formidable ties that persist between place, family and fate. Highly recommended.


“The Sea of Tranquillity“ by Mark Haddon

The author is most well-known for his multi award winning book “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time“. This new book is an illustrated picture book: a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. This is a wonderfully evocative book of a time when children were fascinated by the mysteries of the moon. The story is told through the eyes of a small boy. He has a mural of the solar system on his bedroom wall and is given an atlas of the moon, full of all the detail he loves. He sits on his bed at night and gazes through his window dreaming of going to the moon one day. One night he watches in wonder as men actually walk on the moon. The young boy is the author, many years ago, and he still looks at the night sky dreaming of the astronauts. This book has exquisite soft pastel illustrations by Christian Birmingham. Recommended for children aged 4 - 10 years.


“American Dirt” by Jeanine Cummins

This is a gripping story of a mother and son on Mexico’s migrant trail to the United States , or ‘el Norte'.
Lydia runs a bookshop in downtown Acapulco and her husband Sebastian is an investigative journalist working on a story to reveal the ruthless face behind a violent new narcotics cartel which is taking over and destroying the city. The novel opens with blood-sodden terror as the cartel takes revenge for Sebastian’s expose with a machine-gun slaughter at a family celebration. Lydia and her eight-year old son become migrants heading north to try and find safety on American soil. Cummins has written a thrilling, if controversial, story of the journey so many individuals are forced to take, illustrating the dangers, the violence, the heartbreak and the exhaustion experienced on the way. Highly recommended.

Malcolm's Takenote
360 Beach Road, Mairangi Bay
Ph 478 5328


Issue 107 March 2020