Archive for November, 2013

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Scuba Diving

Flickr Pics 17th November 2013

on November 17, 2013 by kirsty

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Total Khéops

Total Kh?ops by Jean-Claude Izzo

In books read on November 16, 2013

I'm rating this as five stars more because I'm really impressed with myself for getting through a whole proper book in French than for any other reason. Not that it's a bad book, but I really don't know what rating I would have given it had I have read the English translation. I didn't really mean to read a whole book in French; and I didn't really mean to stop reading just about everything else for two months whilst I ploughed through it.

It started out, when I came back from my holidays in France this summer, as an exercise in whether it was possible to set up the Kindle for reading in a foreign language that you don't quite understand. I downloaded the Collins French-English dictionary to my Kindle, it's an ok dictionary though not as extensive as the Larousse one I have on my iPhone (this one I think). You can set it up as the default dictionary so that when you look up a definition it shows you the translation. This worked pretty well, it was much easier to find out what tenses of verbs that don't look like the infinitive meant than it is using a paper dictionary; and it was good at ignoring the "l'" for example on the beginning of a word and translating the actual word. I tried reading some "easy French" stories but quickly got bored with them. So I poked around Amazon's UK site to see whether there were proper books in French available (there were) and looked around the internet for well-regarded French crime authors until I found something that looked interesting and ended up reading the sample of this book. And then when I got to the end of the sample and felt I was doing alright I just carried on...

Often it was more like decoding than reading, but I definitely got better as I went on, and I ended up loving descriptive passages that I would probably have skimmed over in English, having to read each sentence carefully to pick up exactly what was happening was rather an odd experience, but I really enjoyed it and wonder how much I miss in English books by reading them too speedily. Concentrating on the details rather than the story meant I did get a bit lost in the ongoing plot and I know I got some of the secondary characters muddled up at times. But I don't think this was a strongly plot driven book anyway and I definitely got the atmosphere; it's billed as "Mediterranean noir" and I certainly picked up the essence of the city of Marseilles and its racially mixed population.

It's the first part of a trilogy and despite enjoying it I'm not going to be in any hurry to read parts two and three. I think my brain needs to decompress a bit. I would like to read some more French though, perhaps starting with a book that weighed in at 352 pages in paperback was punching a bit above my weight, I might find something shorter and lighter to read next time! But on the whole I'm really pleased I read this, though not displeased to be putting it down and finding something English to go at next...

This was a kindle eBook.

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Afternoon Sun

Flickr Pics 14th November 2013

on November 14, 2013 by kirsty

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Colourful TreesSunshiny Morning IIISunshiny Morning IISunshiny Morning I1000 Pieces

Flickr Pics 12th November 2013

on November 12, 2013 by kirsty

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Autumn Colours VIIAutumn Colours VIAutumn Colours VAutumn Colours IVAutumn Colours IIIAutumn Colours IIAutumn Colours IPudsey at B&Q VIIPudsey at B&Q VIPudsey at B&Q VPudsey at B&Q IVPudsey at B&Q IIIPudsey at B&Q IIPudsey at B&Q I

Flickr Pics 10th November 2013

on November 10, 2013 by kirsty

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1968 Encyclopædia BritannicaAlmost Done!Bathroom Tiles AgainNovember Cloud IIINovember Cloud IINovember Cloud I

Flickr Pics 8th November 2013

on November 8, 2013 by kirsty

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SparklersPumpkin & Walnut Cake

Flickr Pics 6th November 2013

on November 6, 2013 by kirsty

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Whitish BathroomTiles IIITiles IITiles IFrosty SheepSunshineFrost & Sunshine

Flickr Pics 4th November 2013

on November 4, 2013 by kirsty

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TrdelníkPlayground IIPlayground IPowder TowerYellow & Green

Flickr Pics 3rd November 2013

on November 3, 2013 by kirsty

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Giraffes waiting for SushiRed & GreenTreasuryCathedralFountainCastle Square PanoramaCastle SquareMiranda & the Castle GuardPrague Castle PanoramaKirsty & the Castle GuardFrom Prague Castle

Flickr Pics 2nd November 2013

on November 2, 2013 by kirsty

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