In short: The Man Who Died Twice; Aesop’s Animals; Breathtaking – evaluations
The Man Who Died Twice
Richard Osman Viking, £18.99, pp432
TV presenter Osman’s extremely entertaining second novel revisits the quartet of septuagenarians that made his debut, The Thursday Homicide Membership, a runaway hit. Ex-spy Elizabeth is visited by her former husband and colleague, Douglas, in want of assist to flee the clutches of MI5 and the mafia, sending the pensioners on their subsequent sleuthing journey. Osman’s characters are fantastically drawn, completely balancing humour and pathos, and the result’s a novel that’s pure pleasure to learn.
Aesop’s Animals: The Science Behind the Fables
Jo Wimpenny Bloomsbury, £16.99, pp368
Jo Wimpenny, a zoologist, questions whether or not there may be any scientific reasoning behind Aesop’s depictions of animals in his collected morality tales. Her canvas is wide-ranging, incorporating private reflections and analysis. In a single chapter, The Canine and Its Shadow, she sweeps from Darwin to fashionable neuroscience by the use of her personal childhood want to be a canine. Participating and complete, that is extremely readable standard science.
Rachel Clarke Abacus, £9.99, pp240
Dr Rachel Clarke’s award-winning 2020 e-book Pricey Life established her as a compassionate and lyrical voice inside medical literature. With Breathtaking, the palliative care specialist turns her consideration to Covid, in a uncooked and unflinching portrayal of life on the frontline of the pandemic. There may be her fury on the authorities’s ineptitude – right here we perceive the terrifying actuality of inadequate PPE – and an intimate portrayal of her colleagues on Oxford’s Covid wards. And there may be her grief for the sufferers, and colleagues, she loses. Deeply humane, Breathtaking is a e-book replete with braveness, resilience and empathy.
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