Book Review - Bullseye

by James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge (Century) ISBN 978-1-78-089273-3


Michael Bennett returns in this action-packed story, this time to stop an assassination attempt on the US president. 

Similar to most of the stories in the series, Mike showcases his incredible detective skills as, together with the NYPD, he goes on a hunt to not only prevent the assassination attempt, but to figure out exactly who is behind it. With many more characters than normal, I was confused as suspects kept changing and people were cleared. As he delves deeper, he discovers that a couple might actually be behind the assassination attempt. 

There isn’t much movement in Bennett’s family drama, or further clarification in his on/off relationship with Mary Catherine. However the subplot line does offer some insight into the older children. 

Although the ending felt rather abrupt, as if things weren’t wrapped up properly, it left me waiting eagerly for the next mission. 

Bullseye is an overall good read for Michael Bennett fans. 

Alicia Sibanda
www.writerswrite.co.za
3/5  

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

Book Review - Magic: A Novel

by Danielle Steel (Delacorte Press) ISBN: 9780593069110


Magic is a thrilling story of three couples brought together by the magic of an all-white, invitation-only dinner held in the remotest of places in Paris. 

The novel follows the ups and downs of Jean-Philippe and Valerie Dumas’s relationship. It is tested when he moves to China for an impossible to resist career move, leaving Valerie with three small kids. She begins to toy with the strings of an affair with one of her bosses. 

Chantal, a widow with three older kids has finally found love with a much younger man. As she tries to balance her role as a mother and girlfriend, we experience the anxiety as she waits for Javier to leave her for a much younger woman. 

After 20 years of marriage and countless affairs, Benedetta finally divorces Gregorio Mariani after his mistress falls pregnant. She is portrayed as a very strong woman as she picks up the pieces and eventually falls in love with another man. Gregorio on the other hand faces his own tragedies that leave him a broken man caring for a baby on his own. 

The storyline is somewhat predictable, but the ending will leave you questioning how love really works. 

Alicia Sibanda
www.writerswrite.co.za
3/5  

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

Book Review - Baby Doll

by Hollie Overton (Century) ISBN: 9781780895079


Baby Doll tells the story of Lily, kidnapped at the age of sixteen, who has managed to escape from her captor eight years later. 

The story begins the night of her escape when we are taken on a spiralling journey as she returns home and tries to pick up the pieces of her life. As she rediscovers herself and tries to regain her stolen youth, together with her child, Skye, she comes to terms with the severity of what happened. She realises that as much as she suffered, her disappearance affected a lot of people in ways even she never expected. 

Written from the perspectives of Lily, her twin sister Abby, her mother, Eve as well as her captor, we experience first-hand the fear, determination and betrayal as they try to mend their lives and get past the ordeal. The story comes to life as Lily deals with the aftermath of her abduction, and as the family learns who her captor was. 

As much as her return was a miracle, they all have to come to terms with what happened. 

Alicia Sibanda
www.writerswrite.co.za
5/5  

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

Book Review - The Moment She Left

by Susan Lewis (Century) ISBN: 9781780891859 


What happened to Jessica Leonard? That’s the question that everybody in the book wants answered. 

The story is set in Kesterly-on-Sea, a small town where people think they know each other only to discover they have skeletons in their closets. It’s a sad story of a family who refuse to lose hope that their daughter will one day return home safely. 

Two years after Jessica’s disappearance, Andee, an ex-detective going through a divorce and trying to mend her relationship with her children, reopens the case and tries to find answers that will bring closure to the family. 

In the meantime, Rowzee, an older woman who is loved by all discovers she has terminal cancer and goes through the difficult decision of whether to tell her eccentric sister, Pamela and the rest of the town, or keep it to herself. I fell in love with the characters as their stories were revealed through their interlinked lives. The small town bonds as news of Jessica’s whereabouts come to light and as they wait together in hospital waiting room. 

As the secrets and lies are revealed, the story comes together, bringing along with it a totally unexpected ending. 

Alicia Sibanda
www.writerswrite.co.za
4/5  

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

Book Review - In The Maid’s Room

by Hagen Engler (Jacana) ISBN 978-1-4314-2376-7 


"How to be white when you’re no longer centre of attention? When you no longer even matter? How to be white when everyone’s patience runs out? Disco Dave is a South African hipster on the Port Elizabeth social scene, such as it is. His dreams of media moguldom evaporate before his eyes as the scene becomes overwhelmingly blacker and his understanding of it more tenuous. Hard-up for bucks, he moves into the maid’s room on his property and rents out the main house. Sizwe arrives and swiftly sets about taking over Disco’s life…. ” – In The Maid’s Room 

In The Maid’s Room took me by surprise. In just 52 hours, I was taken to a world not so far from the reality I live, where people constantly strive to find relevance and fit into an ever-changing world. The challenges our hero, Disco faces are a reality most of us face every day. 

As much as racism and ‘white entitlement’ is a sensitive topic, Engler manages to skirt past these issues with rib-cracking humour throughout the novel. The only negative was the amount of profanity he used. The sleeve notes could do with a note on the explicit language. You need to read the novel with an open mind to get past this. 

This novel allowed me to experience everything though Disco’s mind, although I did struggle to catch on to all the references. In The Maid’s Room is an important lesson on how to view life. This is an interesting perspective we need from local writers. 

Alicia Sibanda
www.writerswrite.co.za
5/5

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

Book Review - Black Ops

by Stephen Leather (Hodder & Stoughton) ISBN 978-1-444-73664-9

Black Ops gripped me from the first chapter as we are thrust into the exciting life of the main character, Spider and experience how he deals with revenge, betrayal and danger in an action packed sequence of events. Linking the plots in the book to real life events made it all the more real and made it easier for me to connect with the characters. 

Overall I found the book intriguing. I felt as though I was in the drama, following the action alongside Spider and Charlie. As the drama continued to unfold, and deception and revenge sprang from just about every character I found I could no longer put the book down. 

Reading Black Ops made me want to go back and read all the previous books in the series. All in all a great read that has me fascinated with action novels. 

Alicia Sibanda
Www.writerswrite.co.za
5/5

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate