Coversations with Friends by Sally Rooney
Conversations with Friends has been on my reading list for a good few months. I’ve been slowly working my way through my list and stored it on my phone. However I’ve accidentally deleted it somewhere along the way, much to my horror, so I am desperately trying to remember what was on there.
Conversations with Friends is like reading your friend’s diary. It’s an intimate portrayal of a fragile friendship which is full of love but the dynamics can change so easily.
Frances is a self conscious twenty one year old who is at university in Dublin and spends her life writing poetry. Her friend and former lover Bobbi is the exact opposite of Frances, self assured and self obsessed. When they meet married couple Nick and Melissa one evening their friendship and lives face the ultimate test. Frances and Nick embark on an affair, neither of them voicing them true feelings or fighting for each other. Nick is quite a wet character who I just wanted to shake. He’s been surrounded by strong women and doesn’t know what to do when he encounters Frances, who needs some guidance along the way. Previously he’s relied on women to give him the guidance.
Nick is an actor and knows that his wife has embarked on numerous affairs. Initially I thought he was with Frances to try and get one up on his wife but as the affair continues it becomes clear that deep down Nick does have feelings for Frances which tests the marriage and Frances and Bobbi’s friendship.
This novel is so raw and at times this feels like your are intruding into the character’s lives. I loved this book and it’s rare to find an author that does create such real characters.
The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
I was doing work experience at Little Brown publishers a couple of weeks after news broke that Robert Galbraith was actually J K Rowling. I remember wanting to get my hands on a copy of The Cuckoo’s Calling however it wasn’t meant to be. Fast forward a few years later and I’ve finally read it.
I watched the tv adaption and really enjoyed it, however missed the last episode and never found out what happened so when reading the book there was still an element of mystery left!
What struck me about the book is the level of detail it goes into. There are other threads in the novel however the main focus is finding out who murdered model and socialite Luna Landry. Each suspect and connection to Luna is meticulously questioned.
Cormorant Strike has bills mounting up in his detective agency and is sleeping in the office, however decides to take on temp Robin to help him with his administrative work. When Luna’s brother asks Strike to investigate his sister’s murder, the detective jumps at the chance and Robin relishes the opportunity to find out what has happened to the celebrity.
Throughout the book I found there was no leaning towards one character playing a part in Luna’s death and when it was revealed at the end I was quiet shocked. I loved the difference between the dark and depressing world Strike lives in and the glamourous life Luna and her pals led.
I did enjoy the book and read it in lots of small sections rather than having a good amount of time to read a hundred of pages in one sitting. However on reflection because it is so in depth it’s not something you can read a lot of in one go.