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22 May

Attachments

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell Reviewed by Lulu Hamdan It’s 1999. The hype of the Y2K bug is in the air, and lonely Lincoln O’Neil reluctantly accepts a night-shift job as an internet security officer of a newsroom company to make sure employees are using the internet for work purposes only. Monitoring emails, Lincoln comes across a daily exchange between work besties Jennifer and Beth, who are aware of the company policy yet rebelliously chat online about their romances, baby fevers, and break-ups. Lincoln doesn’t flag the emails, but can’t fight the temptation of reading them either, finding himself falling in love with one of them before even meeting her. This book is laugh-out-loud funny and warm at heart. You grow to love the main...
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11 Apr

Eligible

A Modern Retelling of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice by Curtis Sittenfeld Reviewed by Lulu Hamdan Whether or not you’ve read Jane Austin’s classic, Pride and Prejudice, Curtis Sittenfeld’s modern day version, Eligible, will have you hooked. It’s told in third person from the perspective of Liz Bennet, a journalist for a prestigious New York magazine and the second oldest of five Bennet sisters, who returns home to Cincinnati with her elder sister Jane after their father suffers a heart scare. The two arrive in time to meet the star of ‘Eligible’, a play-off of ‘The Bachelor’, Chip Bingley – who to the mother’s delight – falls for Jane at first sight. Liz’s own love life is in for a rollercoaster of a...
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27 Feb

The Island Escape

by Kerry Fisher They say to never judge a book by its cover, but it was obvious from the start that this would be a great beach read. It's about two women going through some major changes. Roberta is trying to explore the hilarious and scary world of dating after leaving her husband of over a decade, while Octavia is dealing with the banality of a traditional life with three kids when all she has ever wanted was to travel the world. The book takes place in England, with sojourns in Corsica and Italy. It's a light read that will have you involved in the lives of the characters. I read it in two days. Enjoy! Booklovers will rejoice in the fact that Kinokuniya...
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2 Feb

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Yes, yes, that movie that brought us so many fantastic phrases (quel rat!) is based on a perfect beach read. A short novel, it combines the charm of Holly Golightly's on screen character with unbeatable prose by author Truman Capote. In turns seductive and naive, you'll fall in love with this perfectly flawed character who believes nothing bad could ever happen at Tiffany's. And yes, it is worth reading even if you have seen (and loved!) the film, because the book is quite different. The film invented a whole new - and in my opinion, unnecessary and boring - character in the rich woman who treats good ol' Fred like he's a prostitute. In the book, he's just a struggling...
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7 Nov

The Other Boleyn Girl

by Philippa Gregory There's a reason this book was made into a movie with Scarlett Johansson and Natalie Portman. Despite being over 400 pages long, it's a dizzying page turner full of deceit, strategy, sex and settings in palaces. It's even better than House of Cards. Narrated by Mary Boleyn, a blonde beauty who catches the eye of the dashing King Henry VIII, the story moves to how they become lovers, then he leaves her while pregnant and begins a romance with her dark haired sister Anne. Anne Boleyn famously goes on to become queen, but the crown sits heavy on her head and she meets a tragic end. The author has a fascination for history and a witty writing style that...
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15 Oct

The Worst Date Ever

by Jane Bussmann When was the last time a book really made you laugh out loud? In the first paragraph alone? This memoir, written by a British comedy writer, takes turns being incredibly witty about the author's experiences in the vacant world of Hollywood, then on to her journey to Uganda writing about political corruption. It all happens because she wants to impress a gorgeous 'serious' journalist who she keeps trying to meet by attending conferences in remote places. While hilariously trying to see if her hot date will ever pan out, she teaches us a thing or two about the important things in life and a troublesome situation in Africa that doesn't get enough attention from the media. An absolutely fabulous beach...
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12 Sep

Rules of Civility

By Amor Towles This novel, set in 1930s Manhattan, is lots of fun. Shopping at Bendel's, gin martinis at a debutante mansion and jazz bands that play until 3 am - Rules of Civility is a perfect vacation read. The prose is witty and colourful. Evie Ross is the daughter of a wealthy Russian immigrant and Katey Kontent is her roommate. They both fall for the banker bachelor Tinker Grey. A car crash brings an interesting turn of events that lead Katey from a low level secretarial job into the executive suite at Conde Nast publications...
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28 Aug

The Evora Trilogy: The Secret Child

I love shining a light on regional designers, hotels, and authors - so *drum roll* here is a book by Kuwaiti Dana Al Jouder! She's an artist, interior design aficionado, and she writes fantastical books - a true creative force to keep on your radar. Exclusively for Holidays in Heels, she presents in her own words her novel The Evora Trilogy: The Secret Child. "We write continents apart; Nicole is in Los Angeles, and Dana is in Kuwait. Our story unifies African, Arab, Brazilian, and Portuguese folktales into one – the Evora trilogy. Our story begins with a beckoning lure and the arrival of vast ships onto Evora’s shores. It all happens on the night of the pink moon, an event that marks the birth of...
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11 Jul

Beautiful Ruins

By Jess Walters In the opening paragraphs, a beautiful blonde woman in a boat approaches a secluded Italian beach with a simple hotel that is usually always empty. The hotelier, in his broken English, is excited to welcome what turns out to be an American actress who has a small role in the infamous film Cleopatra. The plot twists and turns, featuring quirky characters and even a cameo from Richard Burton, as it transports readers from Italy to the US and to the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh. Beautiful Ruins is a beautiful beach read full of travel, suspense and a pretty moving story about holding out for love. Voted a Notable Book of the Year by NY Times Book Review, Best Novel of the...
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25 Jun

The Help

By Kathryn Stockett Reviewed by Lulu Hamdan We’re warning you – once you pick this novel up for a cozy read, you will not be able to put it down. I read it in two days flat. Taking place in Mississippi in the 1960s, a Southern society girl with big dreams of becoming a writer defies the cultural norm by writing a book based on secret interviews with black housekeepers during the Anti-Civil Rights movement. Novelist Kathryn Stockett alternates the chapters between different perspectives, ranging from the hilarious and outspoken Minny Jackson, to college graduate and aspiring writer Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan, and finally to well-mannered Aibileen Clark.  The best part is, you can enjoy a bowl of popcorn and watch Tate Taylor’s adapted movie of the...
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