Wednesday 21 September 2011

Tuesday 13 September 2011


I am not sure how much I have mentioned my dog Nyssa on the blog. She is 4 and a bit and the most gorgeous Chocolate Labrador in the world. She is in theory meant to sleep in her own bed at the end of ours. But, she quite often cheats and ends up sleeping with us.

Terry Brooks


I recently purchased The Measure of the Magic. I enjoyed a lot of his books but the last few have been quite disappointing, or maybe I was being grumpy. Anyway, as I have all his other books I thought that I should buy this one.

So I went to bed at 11pm last night, and didn't sleep until about 3.30am... Why? Because I really got into this book and enjoyed it. I will try to write a review if I have some time. But, I just wanted to do a quick post to say it was bloody enjoyable.

Sent from my iPhone

Sunday 11 September 2011

Sleepy Chickens

This is a picture of my four hens all snuggled up together last night in their coop.

Saturday 10 September 2011

Spellwright by Blake Charlton

Spellwright by Blake Charlton

A great fantasy read with a thoughtful look at magic. 8.4 out of 10. I am looking forward to the second book in the series. 

Sent from my iPhone

Sunday 4 September 2011

3rd Egg

I forgot to say, we went out today at lunchtime and when we got back home we had a nice surprise!! Our 3rd egg. 3 eggs from the 4 hens within 24 hours. We are very proud of them. It was just lying in their run.

One hen or two

Look at these two cute hens all snuggled up together.

Differences in our hens

Yellow ring, Norbert is the real bully of the pack. Strabo (red) seems willing to plod around with her. Poor Smaug (orange) is very shy and doesn't really seem keen on coming out of the coop. Errol is veryshy as well buthovers around the edge as If she is slightly less nervous and is about to bound out and enjoy herself soon. :-)

Sent from my iPhone


WOW, ok that is amazing after 17 hours we have two eggs!!!

Errol was the first that we saw, and we thought that was the only egg, and took it I side and came back out to look, and Norbert turned out to have been hiding a egg ;-) FANTASTIC. We gave an egg each. We are baking a loaf of bread so we can have poached or boiled egg with home-made bread.

So proud of our hens. Hehe

Saturday 3 September 2011


I have to thank @unravthreads for helping with chicken names. I was dithering over the last name for our chickens (baby dragons) and she reminded me of Strabo from Terry Brooks Landover series of Books. So thank you Kathryn.

Sent from my iPhone

Norbert - Bully

I would like to announce that Norbert (yellow ring) is a bully. She has had a go at the other three hens, they all bow as they go past her now!! If not she has a peck at them. Smaug (orange ring) seems quite nervous around her.

First view of our new home

So this is where I am going to live.

My Chickens

Hello Smaug, Strabo, Errol, and Norbert my 4 little Dragons!!

Friday 2 September 2011


I am very excited as tomorrow I become mum to 4 ex-battery hens.
My partner and I have been working hard to build a Coop and run for
them. When we are around we are hoping they will just be able to
wander around the rest of the garden. I am slightly nervous, as well
as very excited. Hope I treat them well. In return for a few eggs
they will hopefully have a nice life.

This is my Coop.

We are starting with 4 and seeing how many eggs they lay, and
also how much they cost to feed etc... but we might end up with upto
8 or so. If so, then we will have to start giving some eggs away :) I should do
a competition on this website to get a couple of free range eggs.

Thursday 1 September 2011

Into the Nightside by Simon R Green

Read my review of the omnibus containing the first two books in Simon R Greens Dark Urban Fantasy series. Featuring PI John Taylor at

Also. I am still having fun playing with posting to my blog directly from my iPhone, which is great fun.


Pudding - last night from Delicious Magazine

Well sending posts directly from my iPhone works.  That is quite fun being able to do that.

Wednesday 31 August 2011

My latest ramblings

I was feeling a bit poorly a couple of weeks ago so spent some time curled up in my bed with kindle.  I seem to have gone through a lot of Crime fiction in a few days.  It made me think that I actually read a lot of crime novels. I think in order of preference I prefer Fantsy then Sci-Fi then Crime. It's weird because I seem to have read a lot of crime this year.  I think I find it's a bit of a comfort thing reading Crime Novels.  I end up thinking well at least i'm not as badly off as the characters in these books.

So what have i been reading this year in Crime.

Girl 4 by Will Carver

His first book, and a nice chap to say hello to on twitter.  A slightly different book, which I really rather enjoyed.  It needs a second reading to hunt for clues that you might have missed the first time around.

Ruth Rendell

I've read quite a few of her books on and off but I just had a bit of a urge for some Ruth.  so I read.  End in Tears, which I enjoyed, Shake hands for ever.  struggled a bit with this.  The Vault.  OK, quite fun seeing Wexford as an ex cop. I then got stuck on The Speaker of Mandarin, and will go back to it some day i'm just not in the mood for it at the moment.

Stuart Pawson

I found a writer that has been around for a while who i've never read and found that his detective books are rather fun!! He is Stuart Pawson, His main character is DI Charlie Priest.  I was slightly frustrated as I wanted to read all of his books but there were only 4 on kindle.  So I read all of these which were. The Picasso Scam , A very Private Murder , Deadly Friends , The Judas Sheep .  They were all a really enjoyable read, not the worlds most modern author but I found them really enjoyable.  If there were more of his novels on Kindle I guarantee I would buy them.

Other Crime that i've been reading this year includes a lot of Scandinavian authors.  Karin Fossum , Anne Holt , Camilla Lackberg , Liza Marklund, Henning Mankell, Jo Nesbo , Hakan Nesser , Gunnar Staalesen , and Per Wahloo / Maj Sjowall

Also the latest Mark Millingham.

I'm trying to work out if I have actually read more crime novels than fantasy / Sci-Fi Novels.  I think the answer is no but I read a lot higher percentage of Crime novels on my kindle then I do Fantasy and Sci-Fi. 

I think some of this is that I am coming to these authors fresh without having a large library of their books.  for instance I buy Agatha Christie books, because I have all the Miss Marple and a few Poirot in Hardback, so i've only got one Christie on my kindle.  The same with a lot of fantasy.  I enjoy having the hardback copies of the books.  It's weird but I don't want hardback books to disappear.  I could do away with paperbacks and replace them all with books on a kindle but I just love the feel of a hardback book!! daft I know.  For example somehow I have ended up with first edition copies of all the Terry Brooks books.  I don't know how, but it's happened, so now it seems a shame even if I actually struggle to read them as they are all a bit samey, but it seems a shame to spoil the collection by not having the latest!!  [EDIT: The struggling to read it bit applies to Brooks but not the other authors mentioned] The same with Peter F Hamilton Alistair Reynolds , and various other authors, I just enjoy having a nice shiny hardback copy of their books.

It probably sounds daft, but there is a very small extra pleasure snuggling down with a decent hardback and a nice Whisky that just isn't quite there when I settle down with a Kindle.

Yes, I am a sad completist... (if such a word exists).

Thursday 4 August 2011


Nice evening. It rained earlier but it's all dry now.

Sitting in a deckchair in my garden, reading a book, pottering around the net. I have a decent whisky beside me, and I am keeping my feel warm as my choccie lab is curled up around them.

Hey, some evenings you just need to relax.


Wednesday 3 August 2011

The Joy of Books

I am sure a lot of people will put this better than I can, but isn't it fantastic when you find a new author who's books you instantly become addicted to.

This year it's happened to me for the first time in a while.  Mark Charan Newton is the author.  I picked up his first couple of books at the beginning of this year, and it is such a good series.  I have reviewed the 2nd and 3rd book of the series, Legends of the Red Sun. Follow the links on the right if you want to read them. 

This series has helped me to read and review more books this year.  I was getting a bit lazy reading the latest from the same old x author, and I stopped hunting around for new authors. I pretty much lost my passion for books. Now I feel re-energised and I have spent a lot more on books this year, and I have even gone to to some book events run by alt-fiction

So even though he will never find my tiny ikkle blog with 1 follower, thank you Mark for reigniting my passion for books.

What i've been upto and what I want to do.


Please do not faint!! I am a bit stuck working a lot at the moment, but to be honest I am just not very good at doing this blog thing.  I'm still writing book reviews on a very good site and you should spend your time reading lots of the reviews.

I've also signed up to be part of the Angry Robot Army, so I'll review some of their really interesting books.  Great small publisher, which a great offer for an annual supply of all their books as ebooks.  Take a look at their website

So hopefully I will get my busy work period of work out of the way in the next couple of weeks, and then I will try to update this site a bit more!!

Also I am trying to find the time to join in a great idea from @fantasyfaction to write 500 words, a day, and as an author pointed out recently if you type at 60 words a minute, then that's only 9 minutes of your time per day. 

Oh.  I also need a nicer editor to write these blogs it's horrible the basic editor within blogger.

Have fun in whatever you are doing, and just remember read lots of books.

Thursday 23 June 2011

Sea of Ghosts by Alan Campbell

Hi to all of you.

OK, probably only Hi to my one blog follower.  You know who you are. Anyway.  Please follow this link to see my review on

 It's a good book overall. some of the characters are slightly flat but the world itself is great and I enjoyed it a lot.

Friday 17 June 2011

Another reason I have not posted much

Oh, forgot to say.  One of the reasons that I haven't had much to say is that I managed to break my left wrist, and my left hand is my dominant hand.  So that way very annoying, and made reading difficult.  I don't know what I would have done with ipad and kindle :)

In case you are wondering the wrist is fine now.

I'm still here :)


Well it's been way to long since I have written anything.  I'm also to busy to write anything now, except to say i'm still around and reading / reviewing books.

Watching far to much Cricket both live and on TV, but still loving books, love my kindle as well by the way, but still really enjoy settling down with a decent hardback and a good whisky.

I will post something sensible soon.  

Friday 11 March 2011

World Book Night - 5th March 2011

I've read quite a bit on t'web about how bad World Book Night was for booksellers, mainly comments that giving away 1,000,000 books would just dilute the market.

Well from my point of view, that's rubbish I loved it, and thought it was fantastic.  I was one of the 20,000 people who gave out 48 books each.  My task was to give away 48 copies of "The spy who came in from the cold" by John Le Carre.

I also went to the opening party the evening before in Trafalger Square.

The lead up to World Book Night or World Boo Knight as some have dubbed it, was interestesing there were a few errors with the website, including the fact that it was nearly impossible to log on in advance of the night, but hey, teething troubles are expected. We were sent an email on the 3rd of March explaing that the books had all been registered on so that we can follow the books as they get passed on, if, they register that they have received the book on the website.

Launch Party

The party was fantastic.  It was sadly to short!! It went on for a couple of hours or so of famous authors, reading sometimes from their works, and sometimes just from books they enjoyed.  I have added some photographs and videos from the site added to my Picassa photo albums, so click on the Photos link and you should be able to see them if you want.

World Book Night.

OK, well I cheated and started early giving away 6 books at the end of the Launch Party.

On the 5th of March itself I took 16 books into Loughborough and just hung around giving away 16 copies to complete strangers.  Which was harder work then I expected. A lot of the people had a suspicious look as if they didn't believe me when I said free, as if they were expecting someone else to pounce and demand money for a charity related to me giving the books away.  Anyway I managed to give the books away and some people knew what the WBN was about and seemed quite excited to get the books.

I also gave away 10 copies in my own street to my neighbours. 

Later in the evening I went into Waterstones at 5 PM because they had a fantastic evening where lots of local people came to stand around swapping their books and giving them away to anyone who came into Waterstones and wanted a copy.  They stayed open late for an hour just to help give out books for WBN which I thought was fantastic.

I also ended up with 9 different books of the 25 given away to make the 1,000,000 books given away.

The last few books are going to a couple of friends and a new book club that I am going to in Nottingham at The Walk Cafe.  Which seems to be a fantastic bookclub.

Wednesday 23 February 2011

Surface Detail by Iain M Banks

What a fantastic book I really loveed this.

It's a fun and exciting book. The full review is on you can follow the link on the righthand side of this page to read it.

Tuesday 15 February 2011

Valentines Day

Well Valentines evening was fun.  Not the actual day, that was work as normal but I / we have a very nice evening afterwards.

The evening involved a couple of cute, and very fluffy movies surrounded by food. We started with raw oysters and half of a Chorizo Fougasse bread. Followed by watching Love Actually. Then main course, Steak, chips, asparagus, and cheesy cooked oysters. Followed by Notting Hill, and last but not least were strawberries covered in melted chocolate, with meringues and ice cream.

Books, well I must admit to curling up on the sofa when not eating in the evening and not touching a page of a book.  I did put some books on my new bookshelf at lunchtime when I dashed home from work.

 OK. I would have added photographs, except for the fact that when I click on the images link on the bar above it comes up with an error page not found!!  I really should sort out a flickr account and just link to the images on there.

Sunday 13 February 2011

Another Bookshelf plus Doctor Who confession.

Well we now have yet another Ikea Billy bookshelf.

I've just about run out of space to put bookshelves but we have managed to squeeze another one in. So, downstairs we have 4 x 80cm bookshelves, each with six shelves full of hardbacks. In the spare room upstairs there are now 5 x 80cm and 1 x 40cm bookshelves. At least half of the Bookshelves upstairs have had 4 or 5 extra shelves put into them to put in extra paperbacks, so finally I have room for all my books.

I have also spent a lot of time this weekend listening to the audiobook of Pushing Ice by Alastair Reynolds read by John Lee. A good book, one of my favourites, so listening to it has been good fun.

EDIT: My mistake, one of the bookshelves downstairs does not have hardbacks on. It's got my Doctor Who collection on it, virtually every story on audio cd's, video's, laser discs, DVD's and Blu-Ray. As well as all the BBC EDA and PDa books, no room for my target books, or the few Virgin books I have.

Thursday 10 February 2011


I'm thinking about getting some rescue/ex-battery chickens.

3 seems a good figure for enough eggs for two people.

My neighbour has loads of cats, wonder if I need a cover on top to keep em safe from the cats. I might be insane but I think they will be nice to look after.

Wednesday 9 February 2011

Domain move

I've now moved my blog to which seems to make sense as it matches my twitter name, and it's a name I've used on the Internet for a while.

Now I need to come up with a slightly artistic logo to stick on the site.

I've been out in the car quite a bit over the last couple of days, so I have managed to listen to a lot of Pushing Ice by Alistair Reynolds on audiobook. In homage to this, we have watched Moon and 2001 tonight on Blu-Ray.

Oh yes, I must say the puppy of the day today a silver labrador looks so cute. He can come and live with us and our chocolate Labrador if he wants.

Also I need to confess to being an idiot. I did not spot the section to create unto 10 extra pages on the site. So I actually created 4 blogs and linked them and had to play to give them all the same look. It's a lot easier now I can just create the extra pages.

Friday 4 February 2011

WorldBook Night - 5th March


Now I have to come up with some way of giving away the 45 copies I have of The man who came in from the cold on World Book Night. Anyone else near Loughborough giving away books as well?

Wednesday 2 February 2011

2nd February

Read a few more books.

I quite enjoy flicking through a few Crime novels.  I'm currently going through Jo Nesbo's books.  I've read three so far and am enjoying them.  Slightly longer than I expected, but still good fun.  They are not earth shattering, but they are a fun read.

I seem to have rather a lot of books on my list of books to read at the moment.  Which is good, but also means I seem to end up ignoring my better half and my dog to much, as i'm buried in a book.

Maybe I should just stop working then I would have enough time to read... I guess one of the troubles with this plan is that i would end up loosing my house, so if I had to carry all 2000 books around with me that would be awkward, oh, and I would have fun trying to find places to charge my kindle.

Talking about Kindles' I still love mine.  I've got about 30 books on it now, not a lot, but as only one of them was below £1 and a couple were about £10 it's not to bad.  I think I must be paying around £4 for an eBook.  I still find it frustrating that you can buy a new hardback book for less than the cost of buying it on Kindle it just does not seem sensible to me.

Hardback books i've got to read.  The second Mark Charan Newton book, the latest Tad williams, and Heroes by Joe Abercrombie.  It's a tight run contest between reading the Joe Abercrombie book and the Mark Charan Newton book next.  I'm also part way through reading The Snowman on my kindle from Jo Nesbo.

Of course, how could I forget I also have Darkest Hour the second Age of Misrule book by Mark Chadbourn to review. I'm getting that on my kindle. So that will be fun to read as well... Jo Nesbo might have to wait for a while before I finish Snowman.

Well onwards and upwards.  See what life has to come, etc...

Friday 21 January 2011


Today we went to the seaside, near Skegness.

It's about the closest nice beech, but still a long way as we live in about the middle of the country.

I started reading World's End in the car on the way back before it got to dark. Good start ;)

Thursday 20 January 2011

Mark Chadbourn

I am now Starting World's End Book one of the Age of Misrule.

I am hoping to read through the next nine books from Mark reviewing them all for I am excited about these as they look like they will be fun, and also it's nice to be able to review a quite local author.

Let the fun begin.

What have I been doing.

Well hello again.  I was meant to be writing a lot more on here and I have not.  Which is bad, because I said I would to myself.  Oh well..

I had a nice but quiet Xmas read quite a few books.  Spent Xmas day at my parents-out-of-law.  New Years eve down south with my family. 

What books, have I been reading. Quite a few.  a couple of physical books and a few on my Kindle.

1222 by Anne Holt
The Bomber by Liza Marklund
The Ultimate Science Fiction Collection
Muder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
The War of the Worlds: Aftermath by Tony Wright,
Lord of the Rings by J R R Tolkien
Surface Detail by Iain M Banks
The Painted Man by Peter V Brett
Nights of Villjamur by Mark Charan Newton,

All very good in their own way.  I think of the lot it's touch and go between the best of these Surface Detail, and Nights of Villjamur.  Surface Detail is pure class and better than the last few Iain M Banks, IMHO.  Mark Charan Newton's book is a great intro to a series and the third of the series is out soon.  So I have to get the second one and read that now.  It looks to be a fantastic series which is just a bit different from the ordinary. 

I'll try to put together some basic reviews of some of these in the next week or two.  But I've been having fun reading all of them.  LotR for the umpteenth time, but the first time in digital format. 

An honorable mention must go to Tony Wright, I've not finished War of the Worlds: Aftermath yet, but so far it's a darn exciting read, I promise i'll read the rest of it soon.

I'm still getting over spending all of New Year awake watching nearly all of the last two Ashes tests between England and Australia, which were fantastic.