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GUEST BOOK REVIEW – Cute Emergency by Tony Heally

Guest Reviewer: Ami  (@mama_roach)

A great addition to anybody’s coffee table, this book is full of cute, and not just required in emergencies. Building on the success of the Twitter account, ‘Cute Emergency’ takes cute to another level – in print form.

The introduction states that since it began, @CuteEmergency has accumulated over 1.1 million followers and continues to grow each day. Fans were asked to submit their cute pet pictures so that they could be printed and shared through a different medium – the good old-fashioned way! What has been produced is a variety of images of animals – some of which, I don’t think are convincing enough to be pets – but nevertheless are exactly what it says on the cover – cute!
Split into useful sections, depending on the remedy required, there is guaranteed to be an image that will make you smile. From sleeping kittens to hugging monkeys, open this book on a rainy day and prepare to be instantly cured.

Buy from Waterstones.com
Out now from Transworld Publishers Ltd
ISBN: 9780593074169

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BOOK REVIEW – We Are Called To Rise by Laura McBride

We Are Called To Rise is about the connecting of people. The connection that we all have with each-other, whether we’re conscious of it or not. Four people from different corners of the world, differing lives and differing backgrounds are all connected in some way but before that connection, that meaning is discovered is it all going to be too late? A soldier who doesn’t quite know what going on around him, a social worker from Las Vegas, a run-of-the-mill housewife who is dealing the downward spiral that is her marriage and finally an immigrant child whose family are struggling…these are the four that we can all relate to.

When given the chance to sink or swim, which do you choose? Sink further and further down or rise with your head held high, knowing that what you did was the best you could possibly do?

This is the sad yet ridiculously beautiful tale of worlds colliding through a series of events that none of the individuals involved would see coming. We Are Called To Rise is a remarkable book about courage and bravery in the hardest of times and what we can do to keep ourselves sane even when there doesn’t seem to be a way out.

From the funny yet warm opening to the timely end that really is poignant, this book is an absolute triumph of a first novel from Laura McBride. Tough going at times if im brutally honest but the ‘pay off’ is more than worth it. I can almost guarantee that if you think that this isn’t the book for you then you’re wrong, step outside your comfort zone and give this a go. You will not be disappointed!

Buy from Waterstones.com
Out now from Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 9781471132599

BOOK REVIEW – The Beggar and the Hare by Tuomas Kyrö

The Beggar & the Hare is a modern re-telling of a Finnish classic tale The Year of the Hare by Arto Paasilinna. The story tells of a man, Vatanescu, who flees his home to lead a new life as a migrant trafficked beggar, all with the aim to raise enough cash to buy his son a pair of football boots.

He becomes embroiled with a Russian trafficker, Yegor, who revels at the dismay of others and profits in their losses. Soon after meeting Yegor, he (Vatanescu) finds out exactly what sort of person he is and he realises that he needs to find another way to make the money he so eagerly needs. His journey takes him far and wide and along the way he meets every sort of character thinkable…oh and a Hare! This injured creature provides Vatanescu with some respite and solace while he is essentially on the run from Yegor.

Vatanescu’s journey takes him to places he would have usually only dreamt of and on adventures that he would never have imagined. The Beggar & the Hare is a sweet tale of friendship and strength even during the hardest of times. Being down and out doesn’t mean that your life is over- make of it what you will.

Kyrö’s prose is often hilarious and I found myself smiling whilst reading the closing chapters, as I felt as though I’d really travelled with our plucky hero. I felt that the book was a little too zany in places and thought that it could have been toned down slightly here and there to have made for a much more welcome ending. Quite similar to Jonas Jonasson’s The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared in both style and content, fans of Jonasson’s work will enjoy this slightly over-the-top tale.

The version that I read was a brilliantly designed small hardback with a coppery bronze inlay for the eye and whiskers of the hare on the cover. A really nice touch that should make people pick it up for a look for sure.

Buy from Waterstones.com
Out now Short Books
ISBN: 9781780721644