I had been doing fairly well with concentrating on reading my own books – until recently. At the moment I have quite a few out and I’m waiting for one to turn up. I need to read The Chalk Pit by Elly Griffiths before going on to read the one that comes after that in her Dr Ruth Galloway series which is – The Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths.
Today I just picked up The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place by Alan Bradley, I’m really looking forward to that one.
I borrowed The Fair Maid of Perth by Sir Walter Scott, I have an ancient hardback edition of it but the print is teeny and this new Edinburgh edition has loads of explanatory notes which I’m reliably informed are really interesting.
The Great War Diaries of Georgina Lee – Home Fires Burning shouted at me from a display in the library so I couldn’t leave the place without it.
Christmas at Little Beach Street Bakery by Jenny Colgan is one that I hope will help out with getting me into the Christmas spirit.
Sew Your Own Vintage Keepsakes by Lucinda Ganderton has a wide variety of things to make in it but it’s the pattern of the wee rag doll which interests me. I’ve always liked the look of rag dolls so I plan to get around to making one – if I have enough time.
The Last one is a book that I’ve already finished. The Sealwoman’s Gift by Sally Magnusson. It was a great read and I hope that she writes some more books. I’ll write about it in another blogpost.
That lot should keep me busy although I’ll have to renew some of them as there’s no way I’ll get them all read within three weeks. But in 2019 I’m definitely concentrating on reading my own books – honest!
Have you read any of these ones?
I’ve just heard that there’s going to be a book festival taking place at Birnam on the weekend of 23rd to 25th of November, I’m really annoyed that I won’t be able to attend it this year as I’m busy that weekend. In fact there are about five things on that weekend that I wanted to go to, it seems that everyone decided that a month before Christmas was the best time for an art fair/festival/antiques fair and I’m fully booked up already.
Jenny Colgan will be one of the many writers appearing at this first book festival next weekend! (23rd to 25th of November). You can check out the programme here. Tickets are available at the Birnam Arts website.
Birnam is of course just a hop and a skip away from Dunkeld which is one of my favourite places to go for a day out and if the book festival doesn’t take up all of your time then there are some lovely walks to go on in the area, but it looks to me like there’s plenty of interest going on at the book festival.
I hope it’s a great success as I want to go to the next one!
The Summer Seaside Kitchen by Jenny Colgan was published in 2017 and I believe it’s the first book by the author that I’ve read. I decided to read it as I’ve been avoiding really heavy books for a wee while, the Brexit mayhem and such was getting me down and this one seemed to fit the bill as a light read. I really enjoyed this it – to a point, there were some things that annoyed me, but more about those later.
Although the setting at the beginning is dirty and sticky London it isn’t long before the action moves to a peaceful Scottish island called Mure (it’s fictional). Flora has been working in London, she’s a very junior lawyer there and her mother had always encouraged her to get an education and have a life away from Mure and spread her wings. A billionaire has moved to the island and although he had promised to bring work and to invest in the island in reality he has kept very much to himself, employed non-islanders and the islanders haven’t gained anything from his presence. Now he needs the help of a hot-shot law firm as the luxury hotel he has looks likely to have an off-shore wind farm as a view – and he wants to put a stop to that.
Flora is sent up to Mure as she obviously has local knowledge, she’s not happy to be back, there are too many bad memories, her mother is now dead and her father and three brothers aren’t exactly happy to see her.
So far so good, I liked Flora and in fact there are plenty of likeable characters in this book as well as a lovely sense of the island landscape.
What annoyed me was that I think that if a writer is writing fiction then they should make sure that they change things that might be too much like real life. I know a few authors and they often say that they get ideas for their books from the news, but don’t make it obvious. Surely everybody knows that Donald Trump threw a hissy fit when he didn’t manage to get the plans for an offshore windfarm close to his Aberdeenshire golf course thrown out. I think at the very least Jenny Colgan should have changed the windfarm to a salmon farm or even to a tidal wave energy turbine – anything but wind turbines.
Otherwise the story was too predictable and it annoyed me how many times Colgan had Flora turning red or pink, she seemed to suffer from terminal embarrassment. Otherwise this fitted the bill as an entertaining light read.