SUNDAY SHOUT OUT

SHOUTOUT

Is there ever such a thing as too many books? I don’t think there are too many books to read, but there can definitely be too many to review. Often I’m sent books and, with an already sagging review shelf, these unsolicited books often end being overlooked – I just can’t fit them in to my schedule. Sunday Shout-Out aims to acknowledge these books and the publishers who have sent them to me.

Sunday Shout-Out is bookish meme hosted by Monique of Write Note Reviews. If you’re a book blogger and you want to join in, just:

  • Share the title, author, blurb and image from a book (or more than one) you want to acknowledge
  • Share the genre, price and link to the publisher so readers can follow up if they like the sound of the book
  • Ping back to Write Note Reviews in your post.

War Clouds Gather1. War Clouds Gather by Peter Watt (fiction RRP $29.99) – published by Pan Macmillan Australia

Against the backdrop of impending war and the rise of the Nazi Party, the epic saga of the Macintosh and Duffy families continues. It’s 1936. While Europe is starting to feel the shadow of the upcoming turmoil, George Macintosh is determined to keep control of his business empire. He takes extreme measures to prevent his nephew David from taking a seat on the Board. Meanwhile, George’s son Donald is packed off to the family station Glen View in Northern Queensland in an effort to curb his excesses. In Iraq, Captain Matthew Duffy doesn’t escape the stain of growing fanaticism. Recruited by British Intelligence, he once more faces a German enemy, although this one has a more pleasing aspect. Matthew is confused by his attraction to Diane and finds himself having to make a hard decision. And just as he is coming to terms with his choice, he meets his estranged son, James Barrington Jnr. In the middle of all this upheaval, the two families experience loss, love, greatness and tragedy, and find themselves brought closer together and pulled further apart. Romance blooms in the unlikeliest of hearts under the gathering clouds of war.

I haven’t read the first book in this saga, but judging from the email excerpts inside, it has been well received; Watt has even been described as the home-grown version of Wilbur Smith by The Sunday Age.

First Sight2. First Sight by Danielle Steel (fiction RRP $) – published by Bantam Press (Random House imprint)

New York. London. Milan. Paris. Fashion week in all four cities. A month of endless interviews, parties, unflagging work and attention to detail. At the centre of the storm is Timmie O’Neill, whose renowned line, ‘Timmie O’, is the embodiment of casual chic, in fashion and for the home. She has created an international empire that inspires, fills, and consumes her life.
In a world where humility and compassion are all too rare, Timmie’s humour, kindness, integrity, and creativity are inspirational. Yet as blessed as she feels by her success, she harbours the private wounds of a devastating childhood and past tragedy. Always willing to take risks in business, she never risks her heart – until an intriguing Frenchman comes into her life during Paris Fashion Week. There is every reason why they must remain apart. But neither can deny their growing friendship and the electricity that sparks whenever they meet. Are they brave enough to face what comes next? And will they do it together – or apart?

I think I last read a Danielle Steel book in my early 20’s … a long time ago now. I wanted to read this one (I did request it, rather than it being unsolicited), but found I just couldn’t get into it, despite trying to on a number of occasions. What I read seemed repetitive, formulaic and clunky. However, with over 600 million copies of her novels sold, Steel really has no need of my thoughts, anyway – her books will sell themselves. Here’s the first chapter – see what you think.

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What do you think? Which of these books would you read?