This tag is associated with 13 posts

A Summer’s Afternoon in Marylebone

It says something about this year’s so-called ‘summer’ in the UK that an afternoon out in my home city without getting soaked merits a blog post, but this, in pictures and words, is the tale of a lovely outing yesterday with my husband and 10 year old son. The London district of Marylebone is one of the … Continue reading

Book Review – Arcadia by Lauren Groff

The question of what literary fiction is, or isn’t, is one that both frustrates and fascinates me.  I’ve read many novels designated literary and not understood what distinguishes them from really well-written commercial fiction (now sometimes referred to as upmarket commercial).  One criterion common to the various definitions of literary fiction is that the writing itself, the … Continue reading

Book Review – The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman

Sometimes you just get a feeling about a book.  As I mentioned in a recent post Book Titles – (Don’t) Call It What You Like,  I wanted to read The Light Between Oceans from the moment I heard the title:  it is original, it conveys the theme and gives a real taste of the beauty … Continue reading

Book Review – Life! Death! Prizes! by Stephen May

I wanted variety in my Fiction Hot Picks for 2012 and this book is certainly different, even down to the way it made it onto the list. Most of the novels are included because I’d heard the author’s agent/editor raving about them, which they are after all paid to do; thanks to their good judgement I haven’t had a … Continue reading

Book Review – We Had It So Good by Linda Grant

Last week’s blogpost 2011 – My Year in Books was about the way certain novels become significant in our lives in a way which transcends the words on the page.  A couple more of mine are The Line of Beauty (2004) by Alan Hollinghurst which awed me to the point of putting me off trying to write (ridiculous, … Continue reading

Columbia Road Market in Words & Pictures

Yesterday was the day for one of our festive family traditions.  By that, I mean my own little family, which is me, my husband and our two sons age 13 and 9, whose childhood experiences of Christmas are different to mine in every way.  I took a few pictures, which gave me the idea for this … Continue reading

Book Review: Are We Nearly There Yet? by Ben Hatch

I feel as though I’ve robbed Ben Hatch.  To have paid only  99p on Kindle for Are We Nearly There Yet? doesn’t seem right.  But I’m going to make up for it by buying some hard copies because it would make a brilliant Christmas present for anyone who (sorry, this is quite a list):  has kids … Continue reading

Book Review: The Devil’s Music by Jane Rusbridge

I recently spent some time on the coast in Dorset, but I’ve been thinking about the sea for weeks, since reading The Devil’s Music by Jane Rusbridge.  When you read a lot (and I’m up to 46 novels so far this year), even good books fade and blur in the memory, but a month after … Continue reading

A Citydweller’s Week by the Sea

Back in London now after a fantastic week away from it all in Dorset, in Lyme Regis on the Jurassic Coast (South Coast of England about 4 hrs from London for those who don’t know it) which is a designated World Heritage Site. It covers 95 miles of truly stunning coastline from East Devon to Dorset, … Continue reading

Luck: When one good thing comes of another

On one of the many three-day weekends we had this year (with the royal wedding and all) we went to visit my husband’s family in the place where he grew up and the rest of them still live.  The Wye is a beautiful wooded river valley that snakes back and forth across the border between England and Wales.  We … Continue reading