Real People by Alison Lurie

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Alison Lurie is an author I’ve been meaning to read for years. I picked this one to try first from the three Lurie books Darren had on his bookshelves because it was (a) the shortest (nothing’s worse than feeling you ought to give an author more of a chance when the long book you’ve picked up begins to bore you) and (b) it’s written in the first person (which I generally find an easier and faster read). I needn’t have worried really because I enjoyed both the story and the writing and will be going back to Darren’s shelves for another Lurie to read.

It’s the kind of book where nothing much happens in the book, but something happens all the same. Written in the form of Janet Belle Smith’s diary during a few days spent at Illyria, a kind of artist’s retreat; the characters really came to life for me. I think the book dates from the late sixties but apart from a few time related references (eg characters having grown up during the depression) it didn’t seem at all dated.

More information about this book can be found on goodreads.

hit map

Locations of visitors to this page

a bit of an experiment, it’ll probably show that no one’s reading because i’m barely posting anything at the mo….

[found via jill/txt]

Unweaving the Rainbow by Richard Dawkins

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Fascinating ramblings on various bits of science (physical science as well as Dawkins usual biological science) that basically come down to how the wonders of science aren’t appreciated as much as they ought to be. I found myself nodding my head and agreeing with Dawkins at about just about every turn. Questions like why people find astrology fascinating when astronomy is so much more amazing bemuse me too. The title refers to Keats claiming that Newton has destroyed the poetry of the rainbow by explaining how a prism splits light. Keats was talking rubbish and Newton just made rainbows even more fascinating. Dawkins keeps coming back to how science ought to be better at creating good poetry (and vice versa) , he comes up with lots of examples of people being misled by ‘bad poetic science’.

On the whole I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to actually read one of Dawkin’s books. I wouldn’t have read this if Darren hadn’t have had it out of the library and kept reading bits of it out to me. It’s that kind of book. In the early chapters at least nearly every sentence encapsulates an idea that you want to talk about and keep in your head to explain to other people. Definitely an author I’ll be reading more of.

More information about this book can be found on goodreads.

The NCT Book of Breastfeeding by Mary Smale

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I wanted to write down the details of this book before I sent it back to the library because I thought I might want it again. Then I realised that the fact that I’d read it cover to cover meant it passed my own conditions for inclusion on my booklog. Hopefully I’ll be able to find it again when I want it to help with the practical stuff in a few months time!

I’ve read so many pregnancy and babycare books lately that talk about everything for a page that it was nice to find one that went into real detail on a subject that I wanted to know more about. On the one hand it doesn’t seem that there ought to be enough to say about breastfeeding to fill an entire book but on the other hand I didn’t feel the book was getting at all repetitive and I did feel like I was getting a complete picture of the good stuff and the bad stuff, the technical stuff and the myth stuff. A lot of what’s talked about here comes down to basic assertiveness but it’s nice to have it detailed and in context.

More information about this book can be found on goodreads.


in a box in the attic somewhere lurks a collection of smartie tops spelling out my name, the whole 28 letter/4 word version. i seem to remember that i collected them throughout my undergraduate and sixth form days in the late eighties and early nineties.

having just read all sorts about the history of smarties lids i want to go and find mine and see if they are the ‘rowntree’ or the ‘smarties’ version. i’ll just read the rest of the smarties museum first…. it’s years and years since i last had a tube of smarties.

[found via sore eyes]


happy ruby wedding to enid and brian!

a very happy ruby wedding to darren’s parents enid and brian!

this is the first cross stitch i’ve done in years and years and years. the picture shows up all the imperfections :-/ the design is from jo verso’s book cross stitch cards and keepsakes. this card suffered from the cross stitcher’s worst nightmare: finding out that you’ve put the wrong damn date on the card less than an hour before you need to leave for the party….. i rescued it pretty well though and still got there on time. phew!

[yes, i am aware i have a major cross stitch gift outstanding – though frankly i can’t believe how long it’s been outstanding for either – remind me again which square number wedding anniversary was it for?]

ten years?

somewhat scarily it’s an entire decade since netscape was released. even scarier, i was navigating and piloting the web before netscape navigator, when mosaic was the coolest thing ever (and in retrospect i still think mosaic was pretty high on the coolest things ever list). where did those ten years go? and what will the next ten bring?

No Man Standing by Barbara Seranella

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I can’t say I was as entralled with Munch in this book as I have been before. I certainly enjoyed it though and I’ll keep reading the series. I liked how the mysteries in this book tied back to the story in the previous book so that it seemed like a continuation rather than ‘Munch finds herself a whole new set of trouble’.

More information about this book can be found on goodreads.
Purchased on 24th August 2004.