Monthly Archives: November 2014

Penguin Fiction Showcase & a fangirl moment with William Gibson

Last night I was privileged to be invited and able to attend Penguin’s General Fiction Showcase event at Foyles in London. It was lovely to meet several good blogging friends again there – Sakura, Kim, Simon my Shiny pal, Simon S (good luck with the Green Carnation prize tonight) and Luci from Curious Book Fans. Knowing that several other blogging friends… Read more »

I'm taking the TBR Double Dog Dare…

For the past few years I’ve signed up to take part in James’s TBR Dare. Hosted by James of James Reads Books and featuring his beloved pooch Dakota in the graphic, the TBR Dare is very simple – Read only from your TBR from Jan 1 until April 1. You can make your own exceptions for book groups, scheduled reviews… Read more »

Catching up … plus more stocking fillers

It’s been so busy this past week and weekend, I didn’t have time to post or read much. I’ve been preparing new pages for the Shiny New Books Christmas Inbetweenie issue – there are some goodies! (Coming to you on Thursday December 4th – click on the picture in the sidebar to sign up for the newsletter). On Saturday, I… Read more »

Not one, but two reworked fairy tales illustrated by Chris Riddell

I love Chris Riddell’s illustrations and children’s books. Amazingly he has only had one post to himself since I started this blog (see here), although he has featured in several others. Even here, he will be sharing this post with the two authors of some newly published reworked fairy tales… I had put these two books to the top of… Read more »

Short but not so sweet – The Galley Beggar Ghosts

I know it’s not quite December, but I am busy Christmas shopping – and between review posts for the next couple of weeks, I shall be recommending some books and bookish things that make ideal Christmas presents and stocking fillers. We’ll start with some stocking fillers…   Galley Beggar Ghosts Those lovely people at Galley Beggar Press in Norwich sent me… Read more »

An Evening with David Mitchell

Last night I went to see David Mitchell in conversation with Mark Thornton from Mostly Books at the theatre in David’s Alma Mater – Abingdon School. The 400+ tickets available for the event sold out in just a few days! The town and school alike, are proud to claim him as one of our own, (although he was born in… Read more »

"I've been to paradise, but I've never been to me"

Love & Fallout by Kathryn Simmonds Tessa is one of those middle-aged women that do causes. She co-runs a (failing) green charity running workshops for schools and colleges and she’s always got a local campaign on the go – this time saving the playing field from development. She doesn’t take much time for herself (or her family arguably) and lives… Read more »

A new historical saga – not for me…

The Brethren by Robert Merle I love the idea of getting stuck into reading an historical saga, I really do. I know I can do sagas spread over many novels – just not historical ones it seems. In particular, I started reading Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles with good intentions here but never progressed onto the second volume properly (I will… Read more »

It was surprising how many of us had a Jean Brodie in our schooldays…

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark Published in 1961, Spark’s delicious tale of a teacher who lives vicariously through her selected pupils was our book group’s choice this month. Our discussions were wide-ranging, but we started off by chatting about how real Miss Brodie was – and it turned out that most of us – certainly the older… Read more »

The Intruders were in my TBR!…

The Intruders by Michael Marshall British author Marshall began writing stylish SF novels as Michael Marshall Smith – winning the Philip K Dick Award for his debut Only Forward, which I’ve been meaning to re-read for years! After a few more, he dropped the ‘Smith’ and moved into the world of creepy thrillers winning plaudits for The Straw Men and… Read more »

Not just a novel of any letters…

Dear Committee Members by Julie Schumacher This novel certainly has one of the most attractive covers I’ve seen in a while – it rather gave me the urge to start colouring it in, but I restrained myself! (Interestingly, between the proof and the finished article, I can see that quite a few of the letters have been moved around, flipped or… Read more »