Welcome back to our monthly book club! I struggled to pick just three books for March because I have read so many great ones this year, but here are three of my favourites so far. If you like my recommendations, consider joining my book club on Facebook: The Bookmarkers Bookclub.
For Fans Of: Val McDermid
What’s in the pages? Jolly Macken has been exiled from his hometown to the border village of Blackwatertown. When he arrives, he is faced with the murder of his brother and vows to avenge him at any cost. But a lot can happen in a week. Over a long seven days, he manages to fall in love, uncover his family’s dark history and even start a war. When Blackwatertown erupts into violence and chaos. Who can he trust, and who is out to get him?
Why should you read it? If you are looking for an exciting rollercoaster of a murder mystery, then I highly recommend Blackwatertown. This book is a no holds barred look at Nothern Ireland in the 1950s during the troubles and the effects it had on ordinary people at the time.
Although it slows down considerably in the middle part of the book, the ending is absolutely incredible and a great twist. Blackwatertown is full of excellent character development and great set pieces of a bygone era that somehow still seems relevant in today’s political climate.
Genre: Magical Realism For Fans Of: Natalie Haynes
What’s in the pages? Mara’s island is one of the fables. She spends her days on it worshipping the sea and the wind, knowing that one day she will end her days atop the cliff gazing out at the horizon. Her whole family will be there too, even her brother Bee and her sister Islay.
But when the island and sea claim one of her own, Mara’s world changes forever. As years pass and Mara grows into herself and her scars, a chance meeting with the magnetic Pearl brings magic to life once more in ways that Mara never thought possible, in a story that she never would have dreamed for herself before.
Why should you read it? When most people think of fairytales, they think of children’s stories with princes and dragons. However, The Gloaming shows that fairytales can be written for adults. From the first page, you are transported into an alternate reality where the mundane every day is written like the most extraordinary fable ever told.
Logan’s aptitude for transforming the ordinary into the magical is a skill that very few writers have. It is one aspect of the story that stays with you long after you’ve finished. This novel is a unique, heartbreaking and hilarious look at growing up and dealing with loss that I would recommend to anyone. It is sure to become a modern classic.
Acid for the Children
Genre: Biography For Fans Of: The Red Hot Chili Peppers
What’s in the pages? Everyone thinks they know who Flea is; the incredibly talented, eccentric bassist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. But who is he really?
Acid for the Children is the story of Michael Peter Balzary before he became Flea, from his childhood up until he joins the Chilis. It paints a picture of America in the ’70s through street kids’ eyes. Drinking, drugging, smoking and getting into trouble.
It’s a coming-of-age story like no other, told by one of the most unique figures in the music business today.
Why should you read it? Let me preface this review with: If you are looking for the story of the Chilis, this is not your book. Go and read Scar Tissue by Anthony Kiedis. But if you are looking for a hilarious story about the first 20 years of an awkward kid’s life, then you should most definitely read this book.
What makes this memoir work is the juxtaposition of wild and crazy tales alongside an insecure child’s deeply touching narrative. Flea does not shy away from self-examination and is highly critical of his actions when he needs to be. This book reads like a conversation with the author, he isn’t talking at you, but rather talking to you and with you. This sometimes leads to the narrative being slightly disjointed. However, it is also insightful, enlightened and highly entertaining.