Monthly Archives: December 2010

Art is a commodity not for looking at!

An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin Steve Martin’s latest novel is not funny. He plays it straight in An Object of Beauty as the world chronicled within is so full of self-parody that there’s little need to add extra layers of satire to achieve a certain sort of vicious comedy. Set in New York during the 1990s, the story… Read more »

Reading Resolutions 2010 – How did I do?

Back in January, as always, I made some reading resolutions.  There were just four of them, so how did I do this year? 1. As always, try and reduce the TBR mountains – goes without saying really. That also means acquiring less books – but I’m not going to impose any out and out purchasing restrictions. Instead I shall try… Read more »

It’s Christmas!

Annabel   25th December 2010   10 Comments on It’s Christmas!

Bah Humbug!

Annabel   22nd December 2010   4 Comments on Bah Humbug!

I Am Scrooge: A Zombie Story for Christmas by Adam Roberts Given that Yellow Blue Tibia by Roberts was both the maddest and best SF book I read this year, I had high hopes of this zombie take on Dickens’ A Christmas Carol as a bit of fun this festive season.  Would it live up to the fun I had… Read more »

The TBR Dare – are you brave enough to take it?

In a possibly mad moment of bravery, I’ve signed up for the TBR Dare over at Ready When You Are CB. Deliberately posed as a dare rather than a challenge, participants are asked to commit to reading only from their TBR piles for a certain length of time or a number of books. The dare will finish on April 1, and if… Read more »

My Books of the Year

Annabel   20th December 2010   12 Comments on My Books of the Year

Now I’ve read 100 books and it is nearly Christmas, I thought I’d look back on my year of reading and pick out my favourites from a very varied bunch.  To celebrate that depth, I’ve chosen a bunch of categories to separate them into,  so without further ado, here are my top eleven (couldn’t manage just ten), and the links… Read more »

The World of Ephemera #9 – The Cockney Alphabet & Railway Porter’s Prayer

I rediscovered these whilst sorting out a pile of cuttings and other assorted papers I’d built up the other day.  They come from articles in old editions of the Folio Society magazine. The Cockney Alphabet I love the this, yet apparently there are millions of variations on it – so here are two, the first traditional, the second more modern… Read more »

Where ‘they beat him up until the teardrops start’ …

Following the Detectives: Real Locations in Crime Fiction edited by Maxim Jakubowski Taking twenty key locations in crime novels and investigating what the areas mean to the authors and their detectives, this book contains a mine of useful information. From Inspector Morse’s Oxford to Wallander’s southern Sweden, from Brunetti’s Venice to Marlowe’s LA – each of the locations gets an… Read more »

What could have possessed Dr Jekyll?

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by R L Stevenson When I received an email from the publicist for this new series of classic novels in quality pocket hardback format from Whites books, Jekyll and Hyde was the one that leapt out of the list as I’d never read it before. The book duly arrived – a… Read more »

An evening with Toby Mundy

My local indie bookshop Mostly Books had an extra member of staff yesterday. Courtesy of an initiative by the Independent Alliance – a collective of ten independent UK publishers founded by Faber, Toby Mundy the CEO of Atlantic Books worked in the shop during the afternoon, and stayed on to give a talk about independent publishing in the evening. I… Read more »