North and South – Elizabeth Gaskell

I loved everything about the BBC adaptation of North and South (especially Richard Armitage as Mr. Thornton!) so I was very eager to read the book by Elizabeth Gaskell. Possibly watching the series first was a mistake, as it definitely made me biased towards certain characters. I believe that I would feel very differently about the book if I had read it first.

Margaret Hale, who has spent much of her life in London is returning to her family home in Helstone. When Gaskell describes the southern hamlet that Margaret loves so much, it sounds like heaven. Unfortunately for Margaret, her stay in Helstone is not to be permanent due to her father, the local pastor, refusing to renew his vows. The family leave behind their peaceful life in Helstone and move to the grimy, dirty and noisy industrial town of Milton, where Mr. Hale plans to become a tutor. Continue reading

Other People’s Shelves – The Copywriter and her Son

Last spring I spent two weeks in London for a work experience placement at Slightly Foxed: The Real Reader’s Quarterly. While I was there, I took the opportunity to invite myself for a meal at the lovely flat of a busy copywriter and mother. Lots of good food was had, including a very tasty cheesecake made by the eight-year-old son, and the wine flowed freely. But one of the reasons for the evening, was to talk about writing.

As many of you will know, getting any sort of work as a writer is very difficult with or without the relative experience. My host, having been a copywriter for about 12 years, is the perfect person to give advice about how to make it in this competitive industry.

I was pleased to discover that not only is this fab mother good with words, she also enjoys reading them. So while she was clearing away the remains of our delicious Coq au Vin, I sneaked off, wine glass in hand, to check out her bookshelves.

The fun began in her son’s bedroom, which is creative, colourful and, as every kid’s room should be, absolutely crammed with books!

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Happy Second Blog Birthday to Me!

Bundle of Books is two years old today! Doesn’t time fly when you’re having fun and reading fantastic books!? It seems like only yesterday that it was birthday number one. Find out about some of the exciting things that have happened over the last year and some of the great books that I have devoured here.

cartoon-birthday-cake Continue reading