It’s International Women’s Day! And to celebrate, I would like to share some of literature’s feistiest women. I love reading books with a strong female character, even if not all of them are that likeable. My five choices are varied – some are brave and adventurous, others materialistic and selfish, but they are all feisty and great fun to read!
Once again Dido Twite’s journey back to her beloved England has been delayed (you must be wondering whether she will ever make it home!). This time it’s because of an order from the King to find Lord Herodsfoot, who is travelling the world in search of new and interesting games. He is much needed back home to help cure the King of a mysterious illness. Continue reading
Almost exactly two years ago, I quit a job that I hated and had the very good fortune to fall directly into a work experience position at Slightly Foxed. I wrote about it at the time, but for some reason never published the post! Seeing as it’s their tenth anniversary this year, I thought I’d finally share my experience…
In the last two weeks of February (2012) my reading habits changed drastically. This is because, instead of reading The Tiger’s Wife, I spent all of my reading time devouring as many back issues of Slightly Foxed: The Real Reader’s Quarterly as I possibly could.
This year it’s Slightly Foxed’s tenth birthday!
To celebrate, some (slightly) famous people have picked up their pens to draw their very own foxy characters in this delightful little book. (Quentin Blake, Carol Ann Duffy, Alan Garner, Kazuo Ishiguro, Michael Morpurgo and Alexander McCall Smith to name but a few).
It’s sweet and funny and all profits go to the Children’s Hospital School at Great Ormond Street. “The money will go to buy books to read for pleasure, which can mean so much to children who are away from home…” What a great cause!
A couple of years ago I did some work experience at Slightly Foxed. Keep an eye out on the blog tomorrow, there’ll be a post all about it!
Next in the Wolves of Willoughby Chase series, we have The Stolen Lake. It’s a wonderfully eerie book set in the strange country of New Cumbria, where Captain Hughes of the Thrush has mysteriously been sent for by their Queen. This is unfortunate for our heroine Dido Twite, whose journey back to England is interrupted once again. Continue reading
A couple of years ago I started to work for a large allotment site. I don’t have the greenest of fingers, but do enjoy pottering about on my balcony with the odd plant. What I love about ‘my’ allotments is the history, the sense of community and the beauty of the site. Neil Patrick’s debut novel has similar topics at its heart.
I was recently persuaded to re-read The Moonstone by a whole bunch of people on Twitter. They were participating in a read-a-long hosted by Lit Nerd and I kept wanting to join in! So I picked up my old and very battered copy (it no longer has a front or back cover!) on a cold November evening.
The Moonstone is the first real detective novel ever written, and indeed you can see elements of this story in many detective mysteries since; twists, red herrings, cliff hangers and seemingly impossible, unexplainable events. The writing is captivating, with a plot that digs deeper and deeper into mystery. Continue reading
The third book in the Wolves of Willoughby Chase series follows one of my favourite childhood heroines, Dido Twite. This is the first book (of quite a few), where she takes over as the main protagonist and she is simply brilliant.
Dido wakes up after a long sleep to find herself on a whaling ship with an odd captain who has a strange obsession with a pink whale. Although longing to get home to England, she promises Captain Casket that she will look after his timid daughter, Dutiful Penitence (as Dido would say, “glad I wasn’t saddled with such a handle!”) on the island of Nantucket. Continue reading
I often like to read books about places I have visited. So, after my amazing trip there last year, I was on the look out for a book set in Nepal. It was the colourful front cover that first attracted me to Little Princes, and the fact that the story sounded uplifting.
Finishing the final pages of Little Princes while sipping ‘milk tea’ which I bought on a souvenir shopping spree in Kathmandu, I felt a real craving to go back and explore more of Nepal. Closing my eyes, the spicy aroma from my mug made the dusty streets of Kathmandu seem not too far away. Continue reading
Last June my friend and I took a much anticipated trip to Rome and Florence. We met as au-pairs in Milan about five years ago and try to get back to our favourite country as often as we can. The night I got back from our holiday, I felt the post Italian blues so strongly, that I desperately searched around for films, books, food, anything! that would transport me back to the wonderful country that I love so much. I was so lucky to find The Enchanted April. The dreary, grey and depressing London in the first part of the book expressed perfectly how I felt about being back. Continue reading