Tag Archives: Murder

Review: Nutshell

Nutshell

Nutshell
By Ian McEwan
Anchor Books, 9780525431947, May 2017, 224pp.

The Short of It:

A clever take on Hamlet as told by a fetus.

The Rest of It:

You don’t need to be familiar with Hamlet in order to enjoy Nutshell but it certainly helps.

Trudy leaves her husband John for his brother, Claude. Together, Trudy and Claude come up with a plan to murder John. The house they occupy is quite valuable. With John out-of-the-way, they could potentially make quite a bit of money. But their plan is not a secret to Trudy’s unborn child. The child is fiercely loyal to his mother and somewhat loyal to his paternal father, John, Mostly because he cannot stand the vile Claude.

This is not a new idea. Movies like Look Who’s Talking have provided platforms for the unborn to voice their opinions but in Nutshell, Trudy and John’s child is very well-spoken, a wine connoisseur (due to his mother’s affinity for drink) and hilarious with his high-brow take on the dim-witted plan these two have hatched.

Nutshell is very literary and clever and superbly written. I’ve read many of McEwan’s books and all of them have been good, with Atonement being my favorite. However, Nutshell was very enjoyable. It was a book club pick and many in the group agreed that it was humorous in its own way, but some felt it was a little over-the-top with its pretentiousness. I didn’t mind that part of it and had no trouble suspending my disbelief over the fetus telling the story, but the scheme these two come up was riddled with holes from the beginning so believability in that regard is non-existent.

Have you read it? I think some readers are intimidated by McEwan and if that’s the case, I recommend Nutshell because it’s not as heavy as some of his other books.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

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Review: End of Watch (Audio)

End of Watch Audio

End of Watch
By Stephen King
Simon & Schuster Audio | ISBN 9781508211365 | June 2016

The Short of It:

A solid conclusion to the Bill Hodges trilogy.

The Rest of It:

*No Spoilers*

These days, I am not a fan of trilogies. When I read Mr. Mercedes, it had not been announced yet that it was the first book in a trilogy but it’s King so what do you do?  You read all of them.  When Finders Keepers came out, I ran right out to get it. It was pretty good but the story strayed a little from the main bad guy which made it less interesting to me.

However, with End of Watch, retired detective Bill Hodges is once again forced to deal with bad guy Brady Hartsfield which made my heart sing. He’s a real “baddie” and in this book, he’s taken it to a whole new level.

King has always been good at developing awesome characters and he built a good one in Bill Hodges. I always worry about the last book in a trilogy because it has to do so many things. It has to tie-up all the loose ends. It has to give the reader a sense of finality without bashing them over the head with some trite ending. It should be good…and this one is.

As you can see, I didn’t go into the story because I’d inadvertently give something away but as a trilogy this series is pretty solid and enjoyable to read and/or listen to.

Audio Note:

I listened to this book on audio and then alternated between it and print due to a technical glitch with my device. If you’ve not listened to a King book on audio then you are missing out.

Source: Review copy provided by the publisher.
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.