Footnotes by Peter Fiennes (Oneworld)In "Footnotes" Peter Fiennes journeys round Britain, from Cornwall to Skye, leaving no gaps in the journey, accompanied by as diverse a set of writers as can be imagined; Enid Blyton and Gerald of Wales, Charles Dickens, Wilkie Collins, Celia Fiennes, Beryl Bainbridge and J.B. Priestly, Somerville and Ross, Boswell and… Continue reading Review: Footnotes: A Journey Round Britain in the Company of Great Writers
The day after the General Election. I suppose we all cope with unfortunate news in our own way (for some people the news was not unfortunate, though I don't know any of those people). I went out for coffee with friends as had been the plan for weeks. When I got in I didn't know… Continue reading Wreath
By the Thames. A world apart from the grumbling, smoky red-tail-light traffic up above on the ring road A young tree points skywards. A cloudy Monday morning but there is still colour to be found in gentle browns, greens and greys. East Hendred. Birch and puddles beneath a suddenly blue sky. The crisp air sun… Continue reading Winter Notes : One
The Light in The Dark a Winter Hournal, by Horatio Claire (Paperback edition, Elliot & Thompson) I first reviewed The Light in the Dark (pub. 2018) in January 2019, in the hardback edition I borrowed from the library. The book is wonderfully written of course, the words and ideas are the important thing, and my… Continue reading Review: The Light in the Dark
Irreplaceable by Julian Hoffman (Penguin/Hamish Hamilton) We begin with a murmuration of starlings above Brighton Pier; some people have come especially to see this, some are caught up in it after a day at the seaside, or on their way elsewhere. Hoffman describes the birds "...being sieved unseen from the sea" and we can… Continue reading Review: Irreplaceable
Underland by Robert MacFarlane (Penguin/Hamish Hamilton) In the early 1980s I was 14 and we went on a geography field trip to the Dales. I wasn't what you'd describe an intrepid teenager, yet I found myself on high tightropes in tree top assault courses and caving. We went down Long Churn; I am convinced I… Continue reading Review: Underland, A Deep Time Journey.
I first wrote a version of this as a Twitter thread so some of you may have seen it before. Then I thought why not put it here too and try break though my blog-block (it's definitely a thing) at the same time. There are still a lot of books hanging about in the car… Continue reading Amelia’s Books, or, A Bit of Car Park Treasure.
You Are What You Read by Jodie Jackson (Unbound) As I clatter out this post on the deadline - pretty much like any number of journalists are required to do ten times a day, apparently - we've just had the European Parliament elections, Trump (ugh) is in the UK , politics seems quite insane and… Continue reading Blog Tour: You Are What You Read
The Good Bee - A Celebration of Bees and How To Save Them by Alison Benjamin & Brian McCallum (Michael O'Mara Books) The remarkably loud buzzing of a bumble bee in early spring, as it somehow* flies from place to place like a noisy levitating pompom is one of the loveliest sounds, a sign we… Continue reading Blog Tour: The Good Bee
Blood on the Stone by Jake Lynch (Unbound) It is March 1681 and Oxford is hosting the English Parliament under the ‘merry monarch’, King Charles II. As politicians and their hangers-on converge on the divided city, an MP is found murdered, triggering tensions that threaten mayhem on the streets. Luke Sandys, Chief Officer of the Oxford Bailiffs, must… Continue reading Blog Tour : Blood on the Stone