After a run of pretty heavy going yet still inspiring non-fiction reads, I was determined to plump for a novel that would be easier on the eye for the next book I was to open for the late summer of 2021. I first heard Meg Mason (2021), "Sorrow and Bliss", London: Weidenfield and Nicolson enthusiastically … Continue reading “Sorrow and Bliss” by Meg Mason – but especially bliss!
Right back at the beginning of the pandemic, one of my neighbours died. Wendy lived directly opposite me, and our lives had been intertwined just so since 1973 when I was just a toddler. She was born in 1944, so she had been a part of my Mum’s life for much longer. When I moved … Continue reading To hope or to hide? Rutger Bregman: “Humankind – A Hopeful History”
There are some far flung corners of mind which can only be summoned by sound (just as with smell, texture, even colours) - some corners more distant than others. There is one vague, definitely greyed-out location, where I’m on some kind of quayside location. My grandad used to drive HGV lorries for a stint when … Continue reading “The Foghorn’s Lament: The Disappearing Music of the Coast”: Jennifer Lucy Allan
“We’ve followed the science” parrots a politician from a daily press conference podium. Defending themselves against charges of inaction or incompetence, the same politician responds in a monotone voice, from a pre-scripted reply that “we’re straining every sinew”. Words are important, but what is crucial is what they really mean – what is behind them. … Continue reading “Earth Emotions – New Words for a New World” by Glenn A. Albrecht
From that moment I first set eyes on the deep red hardback cover, and textured-like effect of the jackdaw artwork by John Lawrence evocative of the linocut works that have long stirred something in me, I knew I must have this book. Obviously, the content of the book was of more than a passing interest … Continue reading “Daemon Voices: Essays on Storytelling” – by Philip Pullman
Our relationship with time, and our planet are as much the theme for Robert Macfarlane's latest book, "Underland" (Hamish Hamilton/Penguin Books, 2019), as is the more literal exploration of underground spaces in a variety of places around the globe. Reading the book could not have come at a more opportune moment for me. I'm finding … Continue reading Underland – a deep time journey
I've just emerged from another Sunday morning appointment with the politicians on the TV, accompanied by my only real constant each week, a plate of the kippers that do get my vote (and maintain consistently his satisfaction levels). This week, we really are in the thick of it with the Tory leadership contest, the revelations … Continue reading Perfidious Albion
A curious railway company, running 'funeral trains' between its own terminus just off London Waterloo, and Brookwood Cemetery in Surrey provides the backdrop to a fantastically atmospheric detective story ["The Necropolis Railway", Andrew Martin (2005), London, Faber & Faber]. Brookwood was the largest cemetery in the world when it opened, and remains the largest in … Continue reading Necropolis Railway took me to a dramatic ultimate destination!
As with the main dynamic of this book, when reviews of “Lanny” by Max Porter first started appearing, it was as if I could hear this book talking to me, and I knew I had to read it. I was not disappointed at all. A number of themes spoke to me. The first and over-riding … Continue reading Lanny
There hasn't been a review of a book appear round these parts in quite a while. It's not been for the want of investing energy in attacking the pile of 'must read' books by the side of my bed - hopefully I will get around to reviewing them soon. But as soon as I had … Continue reading Till the Cows Come Home