Book Reviews for May 2012

Those in Peril
By Wilbur A Smith
Published by Pan
£7.99 less £1
Hazel Bannock is heir to the Bannock Oil Corporation, one of the major global oil producers. While cruising the Indian Ocean, her yacht is hijacked by Somalian pirates and her nineteen-year-old daughter, Cayla, kidnapped. The pirates demand a crippling twenty-billion-dollar ransom for her release, and complicated political and diplomatic sensitivities render the major powers incapable of intervening.
With growing evidence of the horrific torture to which Cayla is being subjected, Hazel calls on Hector Cross to help her rescue her daughter. Hector is the man behind Cross Bow Security, the company contracted to Bannock Oil Corporation to provide all their protection. He is a formidable fighting man. Between them, Hazel and Hector are determined to take the law into their own hands.

Headhunters
By Jo Nesbo
Published by Vintage
£6.99 less £1
Roger Brown is a corporate headhunter, and he’s a master of his profession. But one career simply can’t support his luxurious lifestyle and his wife’s fledgling art gallery. At an art opening one night he meets Clas Greve, who is not only the perfect candidate for a major CEO job, but also, perhaps, the answer to his financial woes. Greve just so happens to mention that he owns a priceless Peter Paul Rubens painting that’s been lost since World War II and Roger Brown just so happens to dabble in art theft. But when he breaks into Greve’s apartment, he finds more than just the painting. And Clas Greve may turn out to be the worst thing that’s ever happened to Roger Brown.

Welcome to Rosie Hopkins’ Sweet Chocolate Dream
By Jenny Colgan
Published by Sphere
£6.99 less £1
Were you a sherbet lemon or chocolate lime fan? Penny chews or hard boiled sweeties, you do get more for your money that way? The jangle of your pocket money, the rustle of the pink and green striped paper bag, Rosie Hopkins thinks leaving her busy London life, and her boyfriend Gerard, to sort out her elderly Aunt Lilian’s sweetshop in a small country village is going to be dull. Boy, is she wrong. Lilian Hopkins has spent her life running Lipton’s sweetshop, through wartime and family feuds. As she struggles with the idea that it might finally be time to settle up, she also wrestles with the secret history hidden behind the jars of beautifully coloured sweets. Welcome to Rosie Hopkins’ Sweet shop of Dreams, a novel, with recipes.

The Boy in the Dress
By David Walliams
Published by Harper Collins
£6.99 less £1.00
It’s a first novel aimed at children of nine and upwards, about a 12-year-old boy called Dennis who lives with his obese, junk food-guzzling dad and 14-year-old brother. Their mother walked out two years earlier and Dennis consoles himself by watching a TV chat show called Trisha, think Oprah, and reading Vogue. Mind you, he’s also the best football player in the school and has a crush on Lisa James, ‘the most beautiful girl in the school’.
So he’s straight.
One day Lisa persuades Dennis to wear drag and make-up into school, with devastating consequences, although it all works out in the end. It’s a great and comic tale, Walliams is a natural wit and good with words.