5 Stars
Following Atticus: How a little dog led one man on a journey of rediscovery to the top of the world
Following Atticus - Tom  Ryan
I normally keep away from books about pets and their lives, because these books are mostly written after the beloved pet is dead and I know I’m gonna weep and weep and weep, not enjoying the read itself. Following Atticus by Tom Ryan however I couldn’t resist. First of all, it is an account of a miniature schnauzer (just like my dog). Secondly, after seeing the book in a catalogue I checked out the internet and found Atticus M. Finch’s and Tom’s blog and was happily surprised Atticus was still alive.

I could actually read this book!

As soon the book was out and my dear colleague put one copy aside for me, I started immediately. And after the ‘long’ wait I wasn’t disappointed. Better yet, I got much more than I thought I would get.

It’s not “just” a story about a special little dog (aren’t they all?) and his master, but a story of self-discovery by taking the road less travelled, daring to say that the main road with all the people on it doesn’t have to be the best road for you, even if that means being “different” or “special”. Just like with Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s not about whether you win or lose a set goal, you don’t have to know where you are going or where you have to end up. It’s all about trying and the changes in yourself.

So, what am I talking about?

I’m talking about Tom Ryan, a controversial journalist in a small town in New Hampshire, reluctantly taking in Max, an elderly miniature schnauzer who hadn’t had much luck in his life up ’till then. Max opens up a new life for Tom, but after only a year and a half Max dies and Tom is by himself yet again. But something changed already in Tom and he decides to have another dog. In comes a puppy miniature schnauzer he calls Atticus M(ax) Finch. With the help from the breeder Tom and Atticus find a way in the world together, both enjoying their walks, the peace and quiet and the best company they can have: each other. Some of the mountains close to home they take on in the summer, but after a friend of Tom dies of cancer they decide on taking on the forty-eight highest peaks twice in winter time, and to raise money for a cancer fund.

Do they know what to expect? No.
Are they crazy? Some might say yes.
Are they courageous? I think so.
Will they make their goal? Not important.
Will they have the time of their lives? Most definitely!

And it is only the beginning…

PS How did the refrain of that song go again?:

When the river was deep I didn’t falter
When the mountain was high I still believed
When the valley was low it didn’t stop me, no no
I knew you were waiting
I knew you were waiting for me
1 Stars
What Every Man Thinks About Apart from Sex
What Every Man Thinks About Apart from Sex - 'Sheridan Simove',  'Shed Simove'
5 Stars
Last Scene Alive (Aurora Teagarden Mysteries, No. 7)
Last Scene Alive (Aurora Teagarden Mystery, #7) - Charlaine Harris
Normally I only read one or two books of this series neatly spread out over a year, to have something to look forward to, but also because I don't want to overload myself with Aurora Teagarden; she really is an overwhelming character. For this book (no. 7 of 8) I made an exception and started it the day after I finished The Fool and His Honey (no. 6 of 8), because that one ended so badly and sad, I just had to read on and know how Harris would manage to get the Aurora and her life going again. Harris didn't disappoint me, I really enjoyed this story. It's uplifting and I needed that. A character from the first book is back again and that is just how Aurora and the series got a new 'start'. Together with no.3 in the series I think I like this book best.
3 Stars
A Fool and His Honey (Aurora Teagarden Mystery, #6)
A Fool and His Honey (Aurora Teagarden Mystery, #6) - Charlaine Harris
Probably the saddest book in the series, all the situations and things that happen are too close to home for Aurora, but nonetheless a fairly good one. The conclusion of the mystery and the solution for the side story (well, a little mystery in the first chapter, apart from the main murder) was, in my honest opinion, too easily and not convincible written out. It seemed like Harris herself forgot that she put it at the beginning of the story.
4 Stars
Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman
Neil Gaiman is a master of storytelling and I enjoyed the book highly. Some bits however reminded me of stories I already read, like Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy and some Greek Myths. Especially the bit with the Labyrinth and the Beast in it, was lacking in imagination in my opinion. That said: Gaiman knows how to keep the reader's attention from the first sentence 'till the end.
4 Stars
Dirk Gently Omnibus
The Dirk Gently Omnibus - Douglas Adams
Dirk Gently is a detective, but not some ordinary detective. He seeks answers in the fact that things are con nected with each other in an almost unexplainable way, a metaphysical way, or as Dirk says it: in an holistic way. So try to explain how these following components fit together in one story: a missing cat, two ghosts, a dodo, an Electric Monk, a professor, an ex university student, a greedy detective, detecting and triangulating vectors of intercon­nectedness of all things and the saving of the human race from total extinc­tion. It’s a tough job, even for Dirk together with his col lege mate Richard, but hey, some body has to do it.

Douglas Adams knows how to entertain people with the right mixture of humour, (science) fiction and philosophy. If you liked The hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy, you certainly going to appreciate this one too.
3 Stars
Mrs. Fry's Diary
Mrs Fry's Diary - Mrs. Stephen Fry, Stephen Fry
Funny, sometimes even hilarious, account of what life is when being Mrs. Stephen Fry.
3 Stars
Seven Lies: A Novel
Seven Lies - James Lasdun
James Las­dun has writ­ten a intriguing story about the youth in for­mer East Berlin. What their dreams and what their pos­si­bil­i­ties were. How they sur­vived the com­mu­nis­tic soci­ety they lived in.
5 Stars
Rebecca (Virago Modern Classics)
Rebecca - Daphne du Maurier, Sally Beauman
It is an impres­sive story. Du Mau­rier knows how to cre­ate an atmos­phere that is omi­nous, obscure but lovely at the same time, and she does it with the great­est ease and the lit­tlest of means.

A very good read indeed!
5 Stars
Ten Sorry Tales
Ten Sorry Tales - Mick Jackson, David Roberts II
All you need to have is an open mind and you’re all set for a good time.
5 Stars
Ordinary People
Ordinary People - Judith Guest
If you want to be swept away and read and read and read, pick up this book with believ­able char­ac­ters in a really pro­found story.
Just a mag­nif­i­cent book. A sort of Catcher in the rye, but than ten times better.
As I said: this book is bril­liant. You feel what the char­ac­ters feel, you see what the char­ac­ters see, you are one of the fam­ily for as long as you’re read­ing. Very con­vinc­ing, very real, very true.
3 Stars
I Capture the Castle
I Capture the Castle - Dodie Smith
Enough romance for a book full intrigues and trou­bles of all sorts. The story is told with humor and great spirit. If you like romance you should try this book.
2 Stars
Quite Honestly
Quite Honestly - John Mortimer
I con­stantly had the feel­ing there had to be more to come, more depth in the story and char­ac­ters, more action-reaction between the char­ac­ters. But as I read along, it became clear that wasn’t going to hap­pen. A real shame, because for me the story/book had the poten­tial to become a real page turner. Now it was just an okay read.
4 Stars
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (P.S.)
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Betty  Smith
We get to see that a woman’s life in the 1910’s isn’t easy, but we can also see there are many things that are worth­while and the hope that if you want to make some­thing of your life, you can accom­plish it by try­ing and have strength and faith.
4 Stars
The Tournament: A Novel of the 20th Century
The Tournament: A Novel of the 20th Century - John  Clarke
What will hap­pen if Hem­ing­way plays ten­nis against Hei­deg­ger, or T.S. Eliot against Marx? And what are their state­ments after­words? You will read it in this crazy (in the good sense of the word) book. A reporter gives all of us a cov­er­age of the biggest sports event of the decade. Each nation is field­ing their great­est names and each of those names wants to be the best. So make way for the great­est minds of the last cen­tury in the great­est bat­tle of all times.

Quite a dif­fer­ent book. This book for one has no plot. But really, does that mat­ter when you have such a great line-up? It is a super read with moments you will never forget.
4 Stars
The Tenth Man
The Tenth Man - Graham Greene
This book you have to read for your­self. It has a great under­ly­ing sus­pense through­out the story that makes it a good thriller. The plot is well thought of and is even bet­ter worked out. Noth­ing unnec­es­sary about things being told, but every detail in the story has his place for a rea­son. Great stuff!