Book reviews from East Devon Resident

Book reviews from East Devon Resident

Book reviews from East Devon Resident - Credit: Archant

April is one of those months when you never know if you’re going to get rain or sunshine. It’s a bit like a good book! You need both happiness and tragedy for a tale to spin along says Sunday Times best-seller Jane Corry.

Ten to Zen

Ten to Zen - Credit: Archant

TEN TO ZEN by Owen O’Kane. Published by Bluebird Books For Life £10.99.

This book got me with the ‘blurb’ on the front cover which promised ‘Ten minutes a day to a calmer, happier you’.

Hah! I thought. But then I somehow made time to sit down and read it.

What a revelation. Now, every time I feel my pulse racing with deadlines or family life, I take time to ‘check in’ to my body and visualise myself in a calm quiet place. Try it. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

The Haven

The Haven - Credit: Archant

You may also want to watch:

THE HAVEN by Simon Lelic. Published by Hodder Children’s Books

Imagine a haven run by kids for kids.

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Their mission? To fight for justice.


Disturbance - Credit: Archant

When 13-year-old Ollie witnesses a killing, he has to go on the run. But then he is taken in by those in charge of the Haven and finds himself in a world he has never known before – full of secrets and danger.

Will he survive? And can he help his companions to bring about a better world? The characters have names which are reminiscent of those in Oliver Twist. A pacy novel for readers aged 11 plus.

DISTURBANCE by Marianne Kavanagh. Published by Hodder & Stoughton £18.99

Call Me Star Girl

Call Me Star Girl - Credit: Archant

There’s always something intriguing about a couple who appear to have the perfect marriage from the outside.

Sara and Mike seem to have it all: a lovely house, two sons and a happy family life. But all is not as it seems. Enter 18 year old Katie who arrives one day on the doorstep, offering to walk the dog. From then on, everything changes….Clever, dark and also funny.

CALL ME STAR GIRL by Louise Beech. Published by Orenda Books £8.99

Bob the Dog

Bob the Dog - Credit: Archant

Tonight is Stella McKeever’s final radio show.

Whenever you read lines like that, you just know something is going to happen. And it does. Stella is ready to share her personal secrets with listeners like the mother who abandoned her and the father she’s never known.

But in return, Stella wants readers to tell her their secrets too. Who, for example, was the mysterious man who called the radio station to say he knew who killed Victoria Valbon three weeks ago?

This will keep you on the edge of your seat!

The Right Wedding

The Right Wedding - Credit: Archant

BOB THE DOG; THE MEMOIRS OF EVIL BOB TERRIER by CBX Martin £8.49 (paperback) and £3.45 (ebook). Both available on Amazon.

I’m always keen to look at books which local authors have written.

After all, Devon is a hotbed of literary talent. This one is rather different. As it says on the back: ‘ You’ve read fluffy tales written by humans about how a dog helped them with this or that nonsense. Well, this is my tail, oops, tale.’

The narrator is Bob, a ‘charming dog’ with a ‘devilish dark side’ who works his patch on an industrial estate, foraging for food. It made me laugh. And it also brought tears to my eyes. I wonder what Bob will get up to next?

THE RIGHT WEDDING by Frances Chambers. Published by Mpress. £9

Weddings are always fascinating – both in real life and in books. So much can happen!

Antonia is a pretty and rather emotional girl who is engaged to ‘stuffy Roger’. When they start to plan their wedding, it becomes clear that their families have nothing in common.

Every member has his or her problems ranging from 17-year-old love-lorn Imogen to lonely grandmother Clarissa.

Add a crumbling country house in Cornwall and you have the perfect ‘confetti’ ingredients for a novel.

The author is local. She will keep you turning those pages…

HAVE YOU ALWAYS DREAMED OF GETTING INTO PRINT? Sidmouth Literary Festival is running a HOW TO GET PUBLISHED day on Sunday, June 9. Meanwhile, best-selling author Ann Cleeves (of ‘Vera’ and ‘Shetland’ fame) will be speaking on Saturday, June 8. For details on how to book, visit the website

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