Monthly Archives: March 2011

A young man and his dog against the world

God’s Own Country by Ross Raisin Sam Marsdyke is nineteen, and due to something that happened in his past, is stuck working on his family’s sheep farm on the North York Moors instead of getting a life.  Virtually ignored by his parents, he wanders the moors with his dog looking at the world from up there with a mixture of… Read more »

A bit of Brideshead with lots of sex and astral projection …

Farundell by L R Fredericks I was immediately drawn to the cover of this book, and indeed the blurb promises much too… There’s an enigmatic book, an erotic obsession, magic both black and white, a ghost who’s not a ghost, a murder that’s not a murder, a treasure that’s not a treasure. Who wouldn’t be tempted by that.  The blurb… Read more »

A thoroughly modern road trip & coming of age story

The Ice Age by Kirsten Reed Shame about the cover, my proof copy had a colourful wraparound parchment over the plain cover with a collage of American bald eagles, stalactites and vampire’s fangs amongst the images portrayed.  Underneath the bland exterior of the published book is a rather good debut. The story is narrated by a seventeen year old girl;… Read more »

An evening with Penguin

Living in a town near Oxford, it takes a lot to tempt me into London midweek during term-time – but when an invitation came to attend Penguin’s General Bloggers Evening in the swanky surroundings of a private room in a dining club in Soho, with a fantastic line-up of no less than seven authors attending, plus the lure of goody… Read more »

The Grand Cull Commences!

Having written an impassioned piece a couple of weeks ago about my dilemma on which books to keep once I’ve read them, I’m starting a grand stock take of all my books, and in particular my humungous TBR (to be read) piles.  Before any book goes back on the shelves, I will decide whether to keep or cull. For old classics that I’ve not… Read more »

…and the winner is …

Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde My daughter drew a name from the hat, and the winner of a signed paperback of Jasper Fforde’s wonderful novel Shades of Grey is … Mae I’ll be contacting you soon to get your mailing address. Thank you to everyone else who entered, and enjoy your weekends. * * * * * To buy… Read more »

Lemony Snicket for Grown-ups

Adverbs by Daniel Handler This author is best known as the writer of the fun Lemony Snicket series of novels for children.  I’ve read the first Lemony Snicket novel, and heard the audiobook narrated by Tim Curry, (I just love his voice!) and one day intend to read the rest of the series.  The film, which combines the first three… Read more »

A man, his lover, & his dog

Timoleon Vieta Come Home by Dan Rhodes This is the story of a mongrel dog with the ‘saddest eyes in the world’.   One day a stray dog turns up at retired British composer Cockcroft’s Italian villa.  The dog has beautiful eyes and Cockcroft is very happy to gain a new companion, for he has been lonely since his last… Read more »

Nothing is ever totally black and white

Shades of Grey by Jasper Fforde I finished reading this novel just before I went to see Jasper Fforde a few weeks ago. I was planning to write my thoughts about this brilliant book shortly thereafter, but I’ve been struck with a severe case of the ‘Jasper Fforde role-playing game’… This, he said, was how everyone gets stuck trying to… Read more »

We’re off to see the Wizard …

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by Frank L Baum The Wizard of Oz is one of our favourite family films at Gaskell Towers, and my daughter and I are really looking forward to going to see the new production at the Palladium during the Easter hols. It struck me though that I’d never actually read the original book, and the… Read more »