What I read in May 2020 (Part 1)

There are two book reviews in this post.

The Healing Knife Could revenge cut her free? by SL Russell was published in March 2020.

I bought this book from a local bookshop, which was able to send out books during the early stages of lockdown. It is a novel about a female heart surgeon. Although it was almost possible to guess some of the twists in the story, others were completely unexpected, including some amusing ones. The writing is good and the author draws on her experience of places to set the scene for parts of the story, which is divided into four parts rather like the acts of a play with the setting changing between each. It was a completely different story from two earlier books of hers, which I have read and reviewed. I enjoyed it.

I have met both the author and Wendy H. Jones, who interviewed her in a podcast about writing medical thrillers.

I bought Picked for a Purpose Bearing fruit through times of hardship by Mel Menzies from the author’s website. She has a special offer during the lockdown and purchasing her books is a way of supporting The Prince’s Trust. I was impressed by the speed with which the book arrived and the communications regarding its dispatch. I have read and reviewed a few earlier books by Mel Menzies. Picked for a Purpose is an autobiography with a difference. After each chapter there are questions about the reader’s response to various issues, raised through events in the story. These can be helpful in finding new ways to approach the difficulties in our own lives and perhaps letting go of damaging or hurtful things from the past. Then there is a reflection on how the Bible helps in a specific relevant manner. The analogy of a Christian life being like a plant is carried through the book with chapter headings and Bible verses.

I found the book particularly interesting as some of the places were familiar to me. I had even attended one of the same schools as the author, but some time later!

In spite of (or perhaps because of) some very difficult times in her life, Mel Menzies’ aim is to comfort others with the comfort she has received. This is a book, which has the potential to help readers understand themselves better and to give them hope no matter what problems they are facing in life. I intend to reread it to consider more deeply some of the questions with respect to my own life.

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