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review 2017-07-13 15:23
Short Review: The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August (Claire North)
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August - Claire North

SeriesN/A

Publisher: Redblock (2014)

Genre(s): Mystery, Science Fiction, Historical Fiction

 

I really liked this book and YAY for Claire North for making non-linear narrative work! 

However, I didn't really like that the story was so narrow in scope (although it is grandiose, or it seems so): I wanted to know all the secrets of people like Harry, I wanted to know all the whys. I was more like Vincent than like Harry, I guess.

Still, a very good book!

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review 2017-04-08 10:09
The End of the Day. Magic.
The End of the Day - Claire North

I loved The End of the Day. I took my time with it, a novel to be savoured for its utterly beautiful writing, gorgeous descriptive nuances and Charlie, the character at the heart of it, one I will never forget.

 

The world Claire North has built here is one of many levels, Charlie, who takes on a new role as the harbinger of death whilst learning about life, is so wonderfully normal that you just sink into his world feeling like it is all entirely possible. The End of the Day is melancholy, intense, a book that has something to say in the underneath of it all if you listen to its small quiet voice. The places Charlie visits, the people he meets, some of them in their last moments, just ingrain themselves into your senses, this is a book with that thing called “all the feels”

 

I actually find it quite difficult to describe with any actually useful thoughts at all, it just IS – Claire North writes with a peaceful complexity, she drew me  into her story without me hardly noticing until I was just living it all right alongside Charlie and the rest of the eclectic, memorable characters I met along the way. Some of the scenes are heart stopping, most of them gently contemplative but ultimately utterly gripping, a book to sink into and leave the world behind.

 

Overall just total total magic. Magic on the page.

Highly Recommended.

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review 2017-04-03 01:08
The End of the Day, by Claire North
The End of the Day - Claire North

On first impression, Claire North’s stunning and strange novel, The End of Days, is about death. Charlie is the most recent Harbinger of Death. As he explains it, he goes before as a courtesy or a warning. Through his eyes, we see good deaths and bad—and the longer you read, the more you realize that this is not a book about death so much as it is a book about empathy. I read The End of Days in chunks over two days. I would inhale the short chapters until I could take no more of its emotional honesty and have to take a break. The breaks didn’t last too long because I just had to have more...

 

Read the rest of my review at A Bookish Type. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review consideration.

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review 2016-11-04 22:48
The Serpent by Claire North - My Thoughts
The Serpent: Gameshouse Novella 1 - Claire North

This was one of the oddest things I've read in a long time.  Deliciously odd.  Fantastically odd.  Gorgeously odd.  

 

I'm sure there's a term for the way in which this novella was written.  Second person POV?  Not really.  Actually, what it felt like was a storyteller escorting me, the reader, around the story chatting with me while telling the story.  It was so very different and a little off-putting for the first ten or twenty pages.  The chapters too - the shortest one was a single line, I think and the longest 25+ pages.  But it all worked!  

 

And the prose was so beautiful!  

 

I'll tell you what.  I am not into audiobooks at all.  I lose concentration and just don't enjoy the process, but this book... OMG, THIS BOOK, in the hands of a voice like, ohh....Patrick Stewart?  Ooh... Eoin Macken (you remember him, he played Gwaine in the TV show Merlin), he has a lovely storytelling voice.  Anyway, in the hands of someone like them, this book would SHINE!  Absolutely shine!  I don't know who actually DID the audiobook, but it is out there.

 

It's a fantasy novella?  Author KJ Charles called it spec fic.  It's set in Venice during the 17th century and while there is no actual magic, there's a very mysterious place called The Gameshouse.  

 

In the end, this was a beautiful, delicious, coudln't-put-it-down read that I enjoyed a whole helluva lot and I will be reading the other two, for sure!  

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review 2016-10-17 21:51
finished.... FINALLY!!
By Claire North The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August [Paperback] - Claire North

EXTREMELY unique premise that is well written (though scattered at times) and has interesting concept/characters. Overall, this is a mostly enjoyable read but it took a reeeaaalllyyy long time to end and when it did I just stared at the ereader for a long while. It didn't bog down at any one place, it was just a steady March to Please Dear Lord Make It End. I won't say that I wish for my time back BUT when I find myself skipping ahead repeatedly to see when it will all be over....that's usually a bad sign. Harry August was a likeable character and the concept/execution of the book were done so well it made the sloshing worthwhile.

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