A couple of weeks ago by sheer coincidence I received emails on almost the same day asking if I would review a couple of books. As the steadier gardening months are upon us I decided that I would. If nothing else, it would give me some extra subject matter for blog posts.
I get quite a few similar requests, as I know many gardening bloggers do, but one request was different in that it wasn't a gardening book but a novella. If like me you are unsure of what a novella actually is, it's 'a fictional, prose narrative normally longer than a short story but shorter than a novel'. This novella is 79 pages long in manuscript format but is estimated to have 117 pages in Kindle format.
The reason the author approached me was that the story was set on an allotment site.
The book arrived in manuscript format so I had my first foray into reading a book on an Ipad, something that Martyn has been trying to get this resistant paperback reader to try.
The book itself will be available on Kindle as of today.
The title of the book 'One for the Rook' intrigued me but I was soon to learn that the disappearance of the resident rooks from the edge of the allotment site was considered to be a bad omen and the events that followed were, by some, attributed to this disappearance.
The author D S Nelson has been an Agatha Christie fan from a young age and her books are very much of this genre. It isn't the type of book that I would choose to buy but the story did keep my interest. It is an easy read written from the perspective of the main, Miss Marple type, character.
Blake Hetherington is an elderly miliner who in his spare time tends his allotment plot with his young friend Delilah. His dream is to grow a giant pumpkin that will win a prize at the garden show. When the allotment site becomes a scene of murder, the pair cannot resist trying to unravel the mystery.
Despite being a murder mystery the book is a light-hearted read with humour creeping in, for example Hetherington can't help reflecting on how the murder is affecting his chances of winning a prize for the best pumpkin.
Being an allotment gardener, I read the book with an eye to any glaring gardening errors but I found nothing serious enough to have me shouting "That's rubbish!" at the screen. A few of the allotment tenants in the story would struggle to keep their plots but I'll allow this for artistic licence.
If you go for the Agatha Christie type of story and don't mind only being able to read it in Kindle format then this may be a 'book' for you but be warned it may also make you view fellow allotment tenants in a new light.
The price is £1.56