Book Reviews

‘The best moments in reading are when you come across something - a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things - which you had thought special and particular to you. And now, here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out, and taken yours.’ Alan Bennett

“Many a book is like a key to unknown chambers within the castle of one’s own self.” ― Franz Kafka

Friday, 28 June 2013

Book Beginnings (2)

Gilion at Rose City Reader hosts Book Beginnings on Fridays

The idea, as stated on the host's blog, is 'to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.' There's a hash tag #BookBeginnings for twitter etc too, and a master linky list on the host's blog. I've got a couple of books on the go at the moment so I've just picked one out to mention here.

My Book Beginning

'They finally stopped me at Dover as I was trying to get back into the country. I was half expecting it, but it still came as kind of a shock when the barrier stayed down. It's funny how some things can be so mixed up like that. Having come this far, I'd started to think I might make it the whole way home after all. It would have been nice to have been able to explain things to my mother. You know: before anyone else had to get involved.'

What an intriguing opening this is; someone has been stopped when trying to get back into the UK, and what's more, it suggests they've got something to hide because they're not totally surprised to have been stopped, so I'm wondering straight away, who is this and what could they have done, and why, what is the background to it? 

(Reading the synopsis below does actually reveal who this is and what they have on their person though...)

Published by Hodder


Here's the story synopsis from goodreads:

A tale of an unexpected friendship, an unlikely hero and an improbable journey...This novel might just strike you as one of the funniest, most heartbreaking novels you've ever read. This is the story of seventeen-year-old Alex Woods - born to a clairvoyant mother and a phantom father, victim of an improbable childhood accident - who is stopped at Dover customs in possession of 113 grams of marijuana and the ashes of his best friend, Vietnam veteran Isaac Peterson. What follows is a highly original and compelling account of Alex's life and the strange series of events that brought him here.


  1. I have to admit that that sentence doesn't particularly grab my attention whereas the synopsis does.

    Looking forward to your full review of this, happy reading.

    1. Thanks Tracy, I need to spend more time reading this one, I haven't got far yet...

  2. The opening drew me in...and the synopsis makes it even more appealing. I'm putting this book on my TBR list.

    Here's my Friday Beginning/56:

    1. I'm glad you like the sound of this one! Thanks for commenting!

  3. I am curious about this one, now. Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

  4. Sounds like an interesting book--very unusual premise!

  5. This is a 'read now' on Netgalley but I've been trying loads to transfer it onto my Kindle and it just won't go. I really want to read it!

  6. Fascinating!

    Thanks for playing along with Book Beginnings on Fridays!

    Rose City Reader

  7. I recently finished this one; I really liked it .. the friendship was pretty superb!

    1. I've been slow reading it so far Julie, not because of the book but because of time, but I am looking forward to getting back to it. I'm glad to hear how much you liked it.


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