Sunday, 8 May 2016

Review: The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick

Title: The Silver Linings Playbook
Author: Matthew Quick
Year: 2008
Publisher: Sarah Crichton Books
Pages: 289

In The Silver Linings Playbook we get to know Pat. He only just got out of a mental institution and it soon becomes clear that he's still a little unstable. He's very much in love with his estranged, Nikki, but they have agreed to have an indefinite 'apart time'. Pat's sure he'll win her back and tries to become the man she's always wanted. But then he meets Tiffany, who thinks about life quite differently.

It doesn't happen very often that I see the film before I read the book. Generally, I don't watch a film 'because I want to read the book first' but then I never read the book and consequently never get to see the film.
In the instance of The Silver Linings Playbook it was a little bit different: I desperately wanted to watch the film, but wasn't too interested in the novel. After I had seen the film, I kinda wanted to read it but still didn't pick it up. Until some friends started to recommend it. I picked it up, and finally got around to reading it.

I don't think I should compare the film and the novel, but I do want to say that I found they're very different. Not necessarily story-wise, but the characters of Pat and Tiffany intruiged me more while reading him rather than watching him.

This brings me to the first reason  why I really loved the book: the characters. They're so well-rounded, and there's so much development going on. Moreover, I just really liked the story. I had seen the film, so I couldn't say it was unpredictable, but don't suppose someone would be able to pin-point where the plot was headed. Because of the fickle nature of both Pat and Tiffany, you'd never know what they'd be up to.

What I didn't like, however, was the superfluous amount of  football references. Football is big in Pat's family, and I get that it's big in the United States, but I personally know little about it, nor do I care to know about it. There were quite a few parts in the novel that I skimmed, just because of the football.

Overall though, the novel was great. Perhaps less 'fun' than I had expected - there were some really sad parts, but I truly loved the characters, despite their many flaws. Great quick read - go read it!

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Review: More Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops

Title: More Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops
Author: Jen Campbell
Pages: 128
Publisher: Little, Brown

More Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops is the second book Jen Campbell wrote about her experience as a bookseller. It's entirely composed out of short conversations either she had in the bookstore she worked, or readers had - the latter part of the book were submissions.

Some quotes were funny, but some really weren't. None were laugh out loud funny, which left me feeling a bit disappointed. And honestly, I doubt the authenticity of some of these conversations. Perhaps made funnier than they originally were.

Still, it was a fun little book and I enjoyed reading it.