Monthly Archives: November 2011

An Oulipo French classic

Zazie in the Metro by Raymond Queneau, translated by Barbara Wright Zazie’s mother has a hot date in Paris, so she has to leave her eleven year old daughter with her Uncle Gabriel.  Zazie is a mischievous and potty-mouthed youngster who, unable to achieve her aim of travelling on the Métro as they are on strike, runs rings about Gabriel… Read more »

Man, lost, needs space.

Buzz Aldrin, What Happened to You in All the Confusion? by Johan Harstad, translated by Deborah Dawkin Written in 2005 in Norwegian and newly available in translation, this novel had an irresistible title for me being a bit of fan of all things space related.  However, it’s not really about the Apollo space program, it concerns one man’s view on… Read more »

Incoming … Yes, it’s a filler, but I know you all love new books!

Apologies for the slight blogging lull – these couple of weeks since half term have been a) hectic, b) I’ve been full of lergy, and c) I have to fight my daughter to get on the laptop these days!  Those are my excuses, and I’m sticking with them. Meanwhile, I know most of you love looking at new acquisitions, so… Read more »

Home, sweet home, or not as the case may be…

Wall Of Daysby Alastair Bruce A man stands on a rocky outcrop, watching the sea-green water. He is called Bran. He survives alone on a small island just big enough to sustain him where he has lived for ten years ever since he was banished from his homeland. Life on his rain-soaked island is hard, but there are fish, tubers, roots… Read more »

Handbagging it …

Annabel   11th November 2011   2 Comments on Handbagging it …

It’s in the Bag: What Purses Reveal and Conceal by Winifred Gallagher I’ve never been terribly concerned about handbags. For everyday use, I like a big bag which carries everything in enough pockets so that I can find things. I’m a big fan of Kipling bags which I buy in their outlet shop at Bicester Shopping Village for half price!… Read more »

Book Group Report: Half of a Yellow Sun

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Our book group read this month was one of those archetypal earnest stories featuring real events that can generate great discussions. This novel takes place in 1960s Nigeria before and during the Nigerian-Biafran war which started in 1967.  It follows the lives of two sisters, their lovers, and a young houseboy…. Read more »

Another quirky fable of men and their work

A Cruel Bird Came to the Nest and Looked in by Magnus Mills Don’t you just love the cover of this book?  Having just finished reading it, I love it even more, as it encapsulates the kingdom within its pages perfectly. I can identify its buildings including ‘The Cake’ – the dome-topped concert hall (middle left) and the post office… Read more »

The Baroness takes on Austen

Death Comes to Pemberleyby P D James Novels that take on the classics have a chequered history, and will always be subjected to increased scrutiny to see if they live up to the premise.  Jane Eyre, Rebecca, and Gone with the wind, for instance, have all had prequels, sequels and adapations written with varying degrees of success. Published this week… Read more »