Books

The School Investigation – Maarten Brand

Book Cover | Copyright Den Hertog Uitgeverij

My book review of “The School Investigation” [EN] / “Het Schoolonderzoek” [NL] written by Maarten Brand

In my view…

This book is written in a classic setting. A senior police officer and a young policeman are working together on a recent case. The difference with this book and other detectives I have read is though, that this story takes place in a setting of a high school with special attention for children who are in need of that. More or less it is quite the classic version but it touches because it has a lot to do with children. Halfway the book I discovered that I could guess who was guilty of the crime that was committed. Towards the end I thought I had to change my suspected criminal. But the plot twist…well I still do not know what to think of that. It did and it did not surprise me.

Writing style / spelling

In the book I have found a few minor spelling mistakes but overall it was oke written. The book is in the category of fiction for adults but in my opinion it also really suits for young adults. The sentences are short and therefore the book reads quick and the events follow each other up quickly. Overall it is oke.

Main characters

There are many characters in the book. The main character is police officer Job Kramer and his colleague Pascal van Deursen. Other names that occur in the book are Kars van Ewijk, Marnix Chavez, Ivo Chavez, Pieter Hansen, Bas Hansen, Lize Hansen, Floris van Trigt, Reimer, Andrei Stoppelbergen, Stef de Langeboom, Tineke van Sprangen, Natasja van de Weert, Boaz Golstyn, Fred Breur, Arie, Xander, Mathijs, Güniz, Lizzy, Kim and Mariët.

I hope you like the book too. It is oke to read it! I am not telling about the story too much– never do in my book reviews – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books

Citylights – Margreet Maljers

Image from Boek.nl

My book review of “Citylights” [EN] / “Licht over de stad” [NL] written by Margreet Maljers

In my view…

Where the first book in the series ‘The Guide – Margreet Maljers‘ left, this sequel starts. It is 1943 and The Netherlands are at war with Germany. In the middle of WWII the story starts. Elja van Lier is now really a young adult and is running a fabrics store in the city of Alkmaar. Her aunts are running a photo shop next to the fabrics store. Her best friend Helmy helps her in the daily routine of being a shop owner. The inhabitants of Alkmaar are having a tough time. In the middle of this WWII lots of people have to buy their food, drinks and basic needs with vouchers. But the vouchers are scarce and as soon as a voucher is valid, it becomes really busy in the fabrics store of Elja. Together with some friends and family she helps refugees and crashed pilots who are wanted by the enemy. Family, love and friendship but also conspiracy. The good versus bad and the incredible kindness of good people that always survives war.

Who would you really trust when a war breaks out? What would you trust? Where do you trust to live then? Those questions I asked myself while I was reading this sequel.

Writing style / spelling

In the book I found only one error, a double printed word. The pace of the writing was at first quick and slowed down towards the middle of the story. A little bit too long slowly for my taste but towards the end it was al quickened up and it made me even wonder how the story would evolve if every year was so descriptive written.

Main characters

The main character in the story is Elja van Lier. And the other very important characters are her friend Everardus (Evert) Koomen, her aunts Flora & Aline van Henegouwen, the parents and aunts and uncles from Elja and Evert and best friend Helmy and her family are important as well. Together roughly three families and a many other persons. But you discover that in the book otherwise a complete story would already be told.

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read it! I am not telling about the story too much– never do in my book reviews – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books

Worth The Wait – Karen Witemeyer

Image from Goodreads.com
My book review of “Worth the Wait” written by Karen Witemeyer

In my view…

This book is about a woman who lives with her son in a women’s village. Because of her past and because she met an important person she decided to live here, in Harper’s Station. This woman who is named Victoria Adams and is referred to often as ‘Tori’ [in the Dutch version though], is very ambitious and starts a shop. Every item that belongs to or is part of or is needed for a household, is a come and go in this shop. Business is going well and Victoria decides to travel to some nearby villages and stop at every house. Having a chat and maybe some business can be done and she will have more customers. In this story there is not an exact time period given in which this story takes place, but you can imagine a period like 1850, before cars were invented and people travelled by horses and carriages.

Writing style / spelling

In the book I rarely found a spelling mistake and the pace of the writing style is nice. It quickens up a bit towards the end. It is a really nice short book and is an inbetweener of a series named ‘Harper’s Station’. I did not know that when I was reading it, found out later on. You do not really notice it in the writing, only that a few people seem more familiar with each other and you think you miss a piece of history somewhere. Although towards the end these pieces are completed as well so you can read it as a standalone too.

Main characters

MAIN CHARACTER(S) EXPLANATION – NOT TELLING ABOUT THE STORY

There are a lot of characters that come forward in this short novel. The main characters are Victoria Adams, Lewis Adams, Benjamin Porter and Emma Chandler (Shaw). Other quickly mentioned character names are: Malachi Shaw, Alberta Chandler, Grace Mallory, Angus Johnson, Bartholomeüs Porter, Marlow Hutchins, Paul Crawley, Hazel McPhearson, Sarah McPhearson, Colin McPhearson, Helios, Hermes, Hercules, Maybelle, Jed Crawley, Frannie Crawley, Michael Crawley, and Daphne Crawley.

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read it! I am not telling about the story too much– never do in my book reviews – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | Part One and Part Two – J.K. Rowling | John Tiffany | Jack Thorne

Cover from Boek.nl, link to the bookinformation page (in Dutch)

My book review of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child | Part One and Part Two” written by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany and Jack Thorne

In my view…

This story is about the life of Harry Potter and his friends, 19 years after he has defeated Voldemort and escaped death. This part starts where the film of the seventh sequel ended. London’s King Cross train station. A lot of things happen in this sequel and definitely clears up a few questions you could have had after reading the first seven books. This book is also genius written in a psychological way. There is more dialogue and you get a better view of the thoughts of the different characters. You get the feeling you get to know them better. Even after seven Harry Potter books, this one can not be ignored. This book answers some questions you probably had and some questions you probably never wandered about.

Writing style / spelling

I have read the Dutch version, which is translated from English by Wiebe Buddingh’, and I really love the style of writing. It is a script form because it is a play, a theater production. But you recognise the same style in this 8th Harry Potter sequel as the previous sequels of Harry Potter which I have read in Dutch as well. I have read the first Harry Potter in English too and the second a bit in German. What is different mostly are the names of the characters. The names of the friends of Harry Potter, the teachers, the families, the enemies and so on. But this is not disturbing because it all fits well together for the Dutch version at least! So a really good translation job from Wiebe Buddingh’ throughout all the Harry Potter sequels in Dutch. I have read the book within three days and I like the pace of the story.

Main characters

This part is the hardest part to tell. Because Harry Potter, Ginny Potter (Weasley), Ron Weasley, Hermione Weasley (Granger) and Draco Malfoy are all back in this sequel. 19 Years later and a lot is going on. People come and go in the life of Harry Potter, people stay close or are torn apart of him. All this that we are used to that happens in the previous seven sequels, happens in this sequel too! Not exactly of course, but you recognise the flow of the book. You remember the previous sequels and their stories, you imagine the characters how they were and for some how they are now 19 years later. Even some plot twists of the other books are mentioned. How did J.K. Rowling think about writing it in such a genius way? Brilliant!

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read it! I am not telling about the story too much– never do in my book reviews – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Have you seen the theater play of this Harry Potter sequel?

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books

Between Title and Position – Marja Visscher

'Tussen rang en stand' [NL] - written by Marja Visscher.
‘Tussen rang en stand’ [NL] – written by Marja Visscher. Cover copyright by publisher Zomer & Keuning, official website link in the image.
My book review of “Between Title and Position [EN] | Tussen rang en stand [NL]” written by Marja Visscher

In my view…

This partly true-life story combines history and fiction. The author has done a lot of research to this person who really existed and to the historical background of the environment. I love reading those kind of books to retrieve a kind of imagination of how people have lived back then. The story starts in the midst of the 18th century (~1753) and tells about the life of Sara Louisa du Faget van Assendelft. She lives together with her parents in The Hague, The Netherlands, in a very famous street where the nobility lived. The ‘jours’, high tea’s, card, gambling and dinner parties are an every days subject. Your title is very important and your position can be of influence. Sara decides to explore more of life than the daily routines she experiences in The Hague. Together with her best friend and neighbour Hille Staal, she travels to the southern part of South Holland. She travels to Heinenoord where her family has an estate that needs some renovation due to storms of the past couple of years. What happens there during the first few months, changes her life forever. She could lose her position, she could lose her title. And the people do treat her like a person with status, not being just one of them who comes for a mindful peace and a renovation.

Writing style / spelling

In this book I have found no writing or spelling errors. It reads very lightly and the pace is normal to quick. Now and then it lets you think and now and then it speeds up. But this also happens because of the storytelling and the gaps in time that now and then occur. Especially more towards the end of the book so the pace of reading speeds up.

Main characters

Besides Sara Louisa du Faget, there are also many other persons mentioned now and then in the story. Her parents, her best friend Hille Staal and her dad Claudius Staal. In Heinenoord lived also many people who helped with and during the renovation. These persons were: Maaike Sevenbergen, Pieter Sevenbergen, Leeuwenburgh, Dirk van der Pligt and his kids, Teun Gorissen, Louter, Barendregt, and Dreesman. All these names are typical Dutch and some names appear really often in this part of Holland, even nowadays.

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read it! I have described the beginning of the story but I am not quoting facts of how the story exactly develops – you have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion. 

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books

Advent – Gunnar Gunnarsson

Advent - Gunnar Gunnarsson
Advent – Gunnar Gunnarsson

My book review of “Advent” written by Gunnar Gunnarsson

In my view… and the main characters

The story is about a good shepherd who, every year in the few autumn weeks and winter days before Christmas, goes up on the mountains. This shepherd named Benedikt does not travel alone. Together with his dog Leo and his buck Knoest he sets off to the smaller roads and paths that lead to the top of the mountain.

Every year herds of sheep are living on the mountain from spring until the end of autumn. Every shepherd has to look for his herd and bring them safe home in the valley before winter starts and it will be nearly too late to travel on the mountain to get home with the sheep.

Benedikt does not have his own herd of sheep. But together with Leo and Knoest he tries to bring every sheep safe back home. He helps the other farmers and shepherds who in fact too late. That something like this happens makes it a very dangerous expedition for Benedikt and his friends. Leo has as a dog a keen sense of smell and can locate the sheep way earlier than the eyes of Benedikt in a winter storm can see. Knoest has also his specialty. When a sheep is stubborn, Knoest knows how to deal with it so the sheep does follow the shepherd Benedikt who leads them all … hopefully … back home.

“A lovely story that shows the unconditional love from a man in a small community who dares to risk his life every year for the good.” – Sophie van den Akker – 12 april 2017

Writing style / spelling

This book is translated from Danish though Gunnar Gunnarsson is Icelandic. I did not discover any grammar or spelling mistakes in the Dutch version but I can not read Danish nor Icelandic.

I hope you like the book too. It is worth to read this short story! You have to read the book yourself and make your own opinion.  

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Books · Events · Pinterest

Atlas Maior – Belgica Foederata

Today I have visited a small exhibition in the National Library of The Netherlands. Wonderful books are exhibited there, accompanied with information. Nice little lessons about books in The Netherlands.

The ‘Atlas Maior’ is the largest atlas ever made. In Dutch more than 9 volumes, Latin 11 volumes, French 12 volumes, German 10 volumes and Spanish 10 volumes. Written by Joan Blaeu and published in Amsterdam between 1662 and 1672. The atlas has 594 different maps and around 3000 pages.

This is one of the maps, do you recognise some places?

Belgica Foederata (de noordelijke Nederlanden) Atlas Maior, Joan Blaeu, 1662. Copyright Edugis.nl on Pinterest
Belgica Foederata (de noordelijke Nederlanden) Atlas Maior, Joan Blaeu, 1662. Copyright Edugis.nl on Pinterest

The pinterest post:

Soon I will write about my experience of the exhibition and upload some photo’s.

Greetings by Sophie

Blog · Books · Social Media

Year 2015 and 2016 in Book Statistics

The year 2017 has started and Goodreads has an overview of my book statistics for 2016. I have not posted my 2015 book statistics of Goodreads last year so I combine 2015 and 2016 in this post. Lists makes a comparison more clear. It will not be a list of books (yet) but only a list of statistics.

The list of 2015
  • Books total: 60 books
  • Pages total: 7740 pages
  • Shortest book: 9 pages ‘Een lesje nederigheid’ [NL]  written by Astrid Marijn
  • Longest book: 350 pages ‘Call After Midnight’ written by Tess Gerritsen
  • Average length: 133
  • Most popular:Twilight director’s notebook’ written by Catherine Hardwicke
  • Least popular:Wolters Informatiekunde in je pocket’ written by Albert Lubberink
  • My average rating: 3,7 / 5 stars

Goodreads link to my 2015 overview: My Year 2015 in Books

Short recap of 2015:

In 2015 I started in september with a new study so I had plenty of time in the first months of 2015. And as soon as study started, I started to read books about programming languages too.

Book Reviews I have written in 2015

Chronological from oldest to newest

The list of 2016

Did the 2016 challenge beat the 2015 challenge?

Continue reading “Year 2015 and 2016 in Book Statistics”

Books

Martin Misunderstood – Karin Slaughter

Cover from goodreads.com
Cover from goodreads.com

My book review of “Martin Misunderstood” written by

In my view…

This story is about Martin Reed, a middle-aged man, still living at home with his mother and working for a cleaning company as accountant. He has a normal life that goes on and on in a simple way. The book is written in a such a way that it seems like you are just reading a novel about a man in his daily life. Suddenly events took place – not really written – and Martin gets accused of murder. At this point, nearly halfway the book, this book becomes a thriller story. I thought I would like the book but more and more towards the end I became less and less fond of it. I would have rated it with 1 star / 5 stars, when the story was not that genius. In the end the story is not solved, or solved in a bad sad way. Depends on how you see it, but I dislike it this way. The main character is genius written, that’s the positive thing.

Writing style / spelling

The pace of the story starts slow and halfway it speeds up. I have not found any grammar or spelling mistakes but some sentences were doubtful. The style of how this book is written, is not really suited for me. In my opinion it is even a psychological thriller and not just a thriller, nor a mystery crime because it is not really about the events that took place. It is more about the psychological go-through in such situations. Not what I expected to read at all.

Main characters

The main character is Martin Reed, a middle-aged man working as accountant at a cleaning company. He still lives with his mother Evelyn Reed together and her character totally turns 180º degrees. Nortan Shaw is the employer of Martin and his colleagues Daryl Matheson, Unique Jones, Sandra Burke and Darla Gantry. At a sudden point Martin gets visited by two detectives named Bruce Benedict and Anther Anabahda. His lawyer is Max Jergens who is a kind of pro-deo (pro bono) lawyer. And he meets Gloria Koslowski a shop owner. But from the moment on he gets the visit of the two detectives, I did not like the book anymore.

That I do not like the book does not mean it is not a good book. The book (style)  just not suited for me and probably I will not read it again. 

Greetings by Sophie

Book Facts:

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Blog · Books

Bookcatalog of 2017 | The first quarter

Whoohoo today I have received this awesome catalog full of books that will be published in the first quarter of 2017.

I was wondering…how do other bookblogger or bookfanatics keep up with what will be published in the upcoming month? Let me know in a comment

A big thanks to Hebban and publisher Van Ditmar for making this catalog.

Another blog post with a list of my favorites will be online later this week.

Enjoy browsing through this catalog!

Greetings by Sophie