Whichbook Blog

Keep up to date with Whichbook news and check out our weekly 'Whichbook of the week'

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How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia

On the surface, this is the archetypal rags to riches, boy meets girl story, but it is also a vividly honest morality tale and social satire. Written in the second person and historical present, the author draws 'you', the reader, into the unfolding drama, with its pretence of being a motivational 'get-rich' guide. It has the effect of being totally involving, cleverly undermining any preconceptions about the 'otherness' of a foreign culture.

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Y

This is a story about family, and who did what, and why. Through it we meet many flawed characters but most important is Shannon, a young girl abandoned at birth, who understandably needs, desperately, to know more about herself and her history. Set on Vancouver Island the book is funny, unsettling, emotional and written in such a wonderfully warm, engaging way that I felt bereft as I reached the end knowing I was saying goodbye to Shannon.|

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Horses of God

From beyond the grave the narrator, Yachine, recounts his impoverished but innocent childhood in a Casablanca shanty town, a life of squalor and football. Then Sheikh Abu Zoubeir enters his life and the innocence is lost forever as Yachine is slowly transformed into a suicide bomber. This is often a harrowing read, especially towards the book's climax but, in terms of understanding the mindset of a suicide bomber, I doubt there has been better.

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The Art of Fielding

Finished this book wishing for more - an absolutely mesmerising and seductive account of baseball, friendship, love, success and failure at a small university in mid-western USA. The characters of Henry, Schwartzy, 'Buddha', Pella and president Affenlight weedle themselves into your heart - guaranteed. And how fascinating is baseball! My book of the year, if not the decade.

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The Taliban Cricket Club

In the UK we moan about austerity and the breaching of our human rights. But we have no reason to complain compared to life in Afghanistan during the 1990s where freedom of speech, incorrect clothing or improper relationships could result in death. This novel shows the cruelty of the human race in all its entirety. However, there is a chink of light in the form of a lone female, Rukhsana and her love of cricket and her desire to be free.

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