Category: videos

Janet Evanovitch & Easy Reads (AKA Popcorn for the Brain)

Janet Evanovitch & Easy Reads (AKA Popcorn for the Brain)

In which I talk about the necessity of hanging up your brain sometimes, and how for me the only way to do that is with easy reads, as TV and movies still leave too much of my brain running around like a ferret in a sock factory. (Please note that I’ve never seen a ferret in a sock factory, so they may in fact be very calm, but I’m assuming they would run about the place tearing socks up, abandoning them, and racing off to find some more.)

I also talk about going through phases with my easy read preferences, and how at the moment Janet Evanovitch’s Stephanie Plum series is pretty much perfect, as it involves an inept bounty hunter, exploding cars, and gun-happy senior citizens. What more do you need?

Plus I manage to muddle up Dirk Pitt and Dirk Gently, which will surprise no one.

 

 

How about you, lovely people? Do you like a little reading popcorn, or do you prefer TV, games, movies…? Let me know your preferences and recommendations below!

 

Book Recommendations & Terry Pratchett

Book Recommendations & Terry Pratchett

In which I admit (once again) just how terrible I am at making book recommendations, and apologise to my lovely friend Lynda (whose blog you should really check out for lovely humour and fab editing tips) for basically suggesting she start reading Terry Pratchett by choosing any book at random. I then attempt to refine that recommendation a little, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t work.

Yeah, I’m entirely rubbish at book recommendations. Entirely.

I try to make up for it by waffling on about the different ways in which his books are good, and how re-reading them is an entirely different experience as an adult, choose my favourite character (sort of), and call the Stepper from the Long Earth series a time machine. Sigh.

 

 

So, help Lynda out here, lovely people – are you a Pratchett fan? What book would you recommend to a Discworld novice? Who’s your favourite character? let me know below!

 

The Sadness of Being Let Down by a Book

The Sadness of Being Let Down by a Book

In which I express my deep disappointment that the science book I thought might clear up my general scientific confusion proved to be written rather confusingly.

Although that may all be down to taste. But I’m not at all clear on why the outfits of the scientists interviewed were given almost as much page space as the science they were talking about.

Okay, that’s not fair, but still – there were lots of words in this book, and most of them didn’t help me understand anything. There were a few that did, but it took too long to wade through all the padding to find them. Which I’m really disappointed by, because the author can write, and I was really excited by the concept. I thought I might come out of it with a good grasp on the basics of science.

Instead I was bored and upset because I hate DNF-ing. 🙁

 

 

How about you, lovely people? Have you been let down by a book you were excited to read? Or do you have any book suggestions for the scientifically challenged, like me? Let me know below!

Accidental Book Discoveries & Deserted Islands

Accidental Book Discoveries & Deserted Islands

In which I admit the horrible extent of my Kindle book hoarding, and how little I actually get around to reading them. And the fact that I am starting to suffer from pretty cover syndrome, especially as it’s led me right twice now, first with Philip Pullman, now with Scarlett Thomas.

I did my magpie thing with this book (pretty! Gimme!) in the local English secondhand bookshop, and if I hadn’t, I probably wouldn’t have discovered Scarlett Thomas until at least the next long flight, which is when I’ll start digging into the depths of my Kindle TBR again. But Bright Young Things was certainly pretty, and sounded intriguing, so… I love accidental book discoveries 🙂

And, as yet another example of being behind the times, I seem to have read the less well-known book before the famous one, and now want to read all her books. Good thing I have the well-known one in my Kindle. Which I really should charge…

 

 

How about you, lovely people? What have your accidental book discoveries been? Have you read any Scarlett Thomas? Do you have any favourites? Let me know below!

 

Fear & Loathing & Confusing Books

Fear & Loathing & Confusing Books

In which I confess to a love of books that sweep you up and carry you along with their sheer energy, even if you have no idea where they’re going. And you’re pretty sure that the author’s not really got much of an idea, either. And while I haven’t enjoyed all of Hunter S Thompson’s books at all, I did enjoy these ones.

And yes – they’re both better than the movies. Well, I think they are. I’m pretty sure I saw The Rum Diary, but I don’t remember it, so it can’t have been that good…

 

 

How about you, lovely people? Have you read any Hunter S Thompson? What did you think? Do you enjoy books with that sort of manic energy? Let me know below!

Roald Dahl & Twisted Tales

Roald Dahl & Twisted Tales

In which I talk about still being in awe of Roald Dahl’s ability to put an amazing twist in his stories, but also discover that, on rereading as an adult, some of his treatment of female characters doesn’t really do it for me (although this was only really in one collection out of the five in the book, so I’d still recommend the other four, because not many people can tell a short story quite as well as this).

One of the things I particularly love is that there’s no guarantee that the bad guys will get their comeuppance in his stories – you’re never quite sure until the end just how things are going to unfold. And while that can make it a little too much like real life for comfort, it also lends a quite wonderful uncertainty to the reading.

But, well. This is the man who wrote about Little Red Riding Hood killing not just her Big Bad Wolf, but also the huffing and puffing one, and his three little pigs into the bargain. So we really can’t expect them to be nice stories.

And I’m not complaining…

 

 

How about you, lovely readers? Have you read any of Roald Dahl’s short stories? Any other good twisted tales you’d recommend? Let me know your thoughts below!

 

A Bedtime Rhyme from Robert Louis Stevenson

A Bedtime Rhyme from Robert Louis Stevenson

In which I blame my terrible memory on Robert Louis Stevenson, because I can still remember his poems from when I was a kid, meaning I have no memory space available for shopping lists or appointment times. I mean, I’ve got to blame someone, right?

I also show off my favourite mercaticorn nightie, and the little furry muse makes an appearance, although she is suitably unimpressed.

 

 

I’m also going to allocate some blame (not for the memory thing, for the whole reading in a nightie on a public video thing), on my lovely Twitter friend M.L Moos, who may or may not remember telling me to read a bedtime story…

And how about you, lovely people? Do you have any favourite bedtime stories that have stayed with you? Let me know below!

 

Lesser-Known Books by Well-Known Authors

Lesser-Known Books by Well-Known Authors

In which I talk about books by Paul Torday, Mark Haddon and Marcus Zusak that you might not be able to name straight off.

Or you might. As has been observed, I’m not very good at keeping up with trends. Maybe these have been just as popular as their big hit books, and I just missed the memo. Entirely possible.

 

 

How about you? Do you have any lesser-known books that you think I should check out? Any surprise discoveries? Let me know in the comments!

 

The Rivers of London

The Rivers of London

In which I get a little over-enthusiastic about just how good Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series in, and complain about losing books while moving. Again.

But really, if you haven’t read these – why not? Modern police work, ancient magic, and the river gods of London, among other things. They’re good!

 

 

Do you have any favourite modern fantasy/ contemporary fantasy series you’ve really enjoyed? And hidden treasures I need to know about? Tell me in the comments!

 

Being Behind the Times

Being Behind the Times

In which I admit just how terribly off-trend I am, and how bad I am at watching movies. I also admit just how awesome those books (and sometimes movies) are once I catch up.

Seriously, how long did it take me to read How to Train Your Dragon? What do I write about? What age group do I write for? I’m disappointed in myself.

 

 

Are you good at keeping up with the latest books or not? Are there any books you know you should have read, but still haven’t? Let me know in the comments!

 

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