Mid Week Quote: Benjamin Franklin

Hello!

My chosen quote for this week is by one of my favourites, Benjamin Franklin. Benjamin Franklin (1705/1706-1790) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and the first United States Postmaster General. 

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” 

Benjamin Franklin

Happy Reading

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WWW Wednesday: 31/08/2022

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words.

The rules are answer the questions below and share a link to your blog in the comments section of Sam’s blog.

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you will read next?

Hello!

I hope all my fellow Book Dragons are well and having a good week so far.

What I am Currently Reading

I started this today and I am flying through it. I have only read one Barbara Taylor Bradford before but really enjoyed it and I am enjoying this one so far.

What I have Recently Finished Reading

I finished this today and could not put it down. I enjoyed this book a lot more than when I read it in 2014. I can’t wait to read the next one!

What I Think I will Read Next

I really want to read book four of The Wheel of Time series but I know that I if I go straight into it without a little break I might go into a reading slump as I am never good going straight through a series.

Please drop me a comment with your WWW Wednesday and I will head over for a visit.

Happy Reading

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

Etsy

The Woolworths Girls by Elaine Everest (Review)

The Woolworths Girls by Elaine Everest

Blurb

It’s 1938 and as the threat of war hangs over the country, Sarah Caselton is preparing for her new job at Woolworths. Before long, she forms a tight bond with two of her colleagues: the glamorous Maisie and shy Freda. The trio couldn’t be more different, but they immediately form a close-knit friendship, sharing their hopes and dreams for the future.

Sarah soon falls into the rhythm of her new position, enjoying the social events hosted by Woolies and her blossoming romance with young assistant manager, Alan. But with the threat of war clouding the horizon, the young men and women of Woolworths realize that there are bigger battles ahead. It’s a dangerous time for the nation, and an even more perilous time to fall in love . . .

Review

This is my third Elaine Everest read and the first one that I haven’t read at Christmas. I read Christmas at Woolworths last Christmas which is actually the second in the series so I thought I would start at the beginning and read the full Woolworths series. 

I love Everest’s writing because I always find it so comforting, it gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling which is always a good thing with a book. This book introduces the characters of the series, focusing on Sarah Caselton. Sarah gets a job working for Woolworths and makes two firm friends, the glamorous and feisty Maisie and the shy Freda. The three women are all so different but together they are unstoppable and best friends. 

As Sarah, Maisie and Freda start to enjoy their working lives at Woolworths and meeting and making new friends they also have to deal with the threat of impending war. As romances blossom the girls begin to realise that the men they love will be sent to war and this leads to uncertain times. 

My favourite character in this book was Ruby who is Sarah’s grandmother. Ruby is a widow and her home is at the heart of this book, everyone is welcome. Ruby takes anyone who needs help under her wing. There is always a hot meal and a shoulder to cry on where Ruby is concerned. Ruby works hard and goes above and beyond to help people, she really is a treasure. 

Everest’s clever writing makes you want to know more about all the characters in this book and not just the details of the main characters. I felt immersed in the story desperately wanting to know more about the characters which also meant I found it hard to put the book down. 

This story is so beautifully written and the characters Everest has created are just so easy to love that I will definitely be continuing with the series and reading other books by Everest. Everest is definitely a new comfort author for me. I give this book 5 out of 5 Dragons.

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Purchase Links

Book Depository | Bookshop.org | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Elaine Everest was born and brought up in northwest Kent and has written widely – both short stories and features – for women’s magazines. When she isn’t writing, Everest runs The Write Place creative writing school in Dartford Kent, and the blog for Romantic Novelists’ Association. 

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

Goodreads Monday: 29/08/2022

Goodreads Monday is now hosted by Budget Tales Book Club.  All you have to do is show off a book from your TBR that you’re looking forward to reading.

Hello!

Happy Monday!

I hope everyone has had a good start to the week. I have had a lovely day off because it has been a bank holiday today.

My chosen book today is by a new author for me but one I have always planned on reading. Anthony Trollope wrote a great many books but I have gone for one of his more popular books.

At first savagely reviewed, The Way We Live Now (1875) has since emerged as Trollope’s masterpiece and the most admired of his works. When Trollope returned to England from the colonies in 1872 he was horrified by the immorality and dishonesty he found. In a fever of indignation he sat down to write The Way We Live Now, his longest novel. Nothing escaped the satirist’s whip: politics, finance, the aristocracy, the literary world, gambling, sex, and much else. In this world of bribes and vendettas, swindling and suicide, in which heiresses are won like gambling stakes, Trollope’s characters embody all the vices: Lady Carbury, a 43-year-old coquette, ‘false from head to foot’; her son Felix, with the ‘instincts of a horse, not approaching the higher sympathies of a dog’; and Melmotte, the colossal figure who dominates the book, a ‘horrid, big, rich scoundrel … a bloated swindler … a vile city ruffian’.

Purchase Links

Book Depository | Bookshop.org | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

Please drop me a comment if you have taken part in Goodreads Monday and I will head over for a visit.

Happy Reading

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

The Weekly Brief

Hello!

I hope everyone has had a good weekend so far. This week has been another good one on the blogging and reading front.

Posts this Week

Currently Reading

I’ve been really pushing forward with this book especially this weekend. I am really enjoying the book and I hope to finish it before the end of the month.

Happy Reading

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

The Black Mountain by Kate Mosse (Review)

The Black Mountain by Kate Mosse

Blurb

It is May, 1706. Ana, a young Spanish woman, lives in a small town on the north-west coast of Tenerife with her mother and twin younger brothers. The town is in the shadow of a mighty volcano, which legend says has the devil living inside it. However, there has been no eruption for thousands of years and no one believes it is a threat.

One day, Ana notices that the air feels strange and heavy, that the birds have stopped singing. Tending the family vineyard, a sudden strange tremor in the earth frightens her. Very soon it will be a race against time for Ana to help persuade the town that they are in danger and should flee before the volcano erupts and destroys their world. Will they listen? And Ana herself faces another danger . . .

Review

I will be honest I have a quite a collection of unread Kate Mosse books. I see one of her books and think that looks good and buy it but never read it. However, after reading this book I will be rectifying that situation. This is definitely my favourite Quick Reads book that I have read so far. 

The story is fast paced and although predictable I still really enjoyed it. The main character Ana has a lot on her shoulders for someone so young, she tends the family vineyard, tries to keep an eye on her younger twin brothers and helps and looks after her mom. If life wasn’t hard enough for Ana now there are strange things happening with the mountain her family’s vineyard and home is on but that is not the only danger. 

Thankfully, Ana has some remarkable friends in the form of Widow Silva, Antonio and Rudi. Antonio is a mysterious man who nobody knows much about but Ana knows she can trust him because her father trusted him. Widow Silva makes her living smoking fish on the beach but she also keeps an eye on Rudi who is a young boy sadly crippled because he was born too early. Rudi is my favourite character and is truly adorable, he starts off so shy and vulnerable but slowly you see his true nature and you can’t help but smile every time he is mentioned. 

I loved this book and read it one sitting and yes I know there could have been more character development but it is deliberately a short novel so lacks the space for the extra development. In a way I think that helped because it kept the novel fast paced. I loved Kate Mosse’s writing and will definitely be reading more of her books soon, although I realise a lot of her books are a lot longer than this one which is only 136 pages. I give this book 5 out of 5 Dragons. 

🐲🐲🐲🐲🐲

Purchase Links

Book Depository | Bookshop.org | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Kate Mosse is an international bestselling author with sales of more than five million copies in 42 languages. Her fiction includes the novels Labyrinth (2005), Sepulchre (2007), The Winter Ghosts (2009), and Citadel (2012), as well as an acclaimed collection of short stories, The Mistletoe Bride & Other Haunting Tales (2013). Kate’s new novel, The Taxidermist’s Daughter is out now.

Kate is the Co-Founder and Chair of the Board of the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction (previously the Orange Prize) and in June 2013, was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to literature. She lives in Sussex.

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

Friday Poetry: George Herbert

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has had a good week so far.

My chosen poem this week is by the Welsh poet, orator and priest George Herbert (1593-1633).

Prayer (I)

Prayer the Church's banquet, angels' age,
God's breath in man returning to his birth,
The soul in paraphrase, heart in pilgrimage,
The Christian plummet sounding heav'n and earth;
Engine against th' Almighty, sinners' tow'r,
Reversed thunder, Christ-side-piercing spear,
The six-days' world transposing in an hour,
A kind of tune, which all things hear and fear;
Softness, and peace, and joy, and love, and bliss,
Exalted manna, gladness of the best,
Heaven in ordinary, man well drest,
The milky way, the bird of Paradise,
Church-bells beyond the stars heard, the soul'd blood,
The land of spices; something understood. 

George Herbert

Happy Reading

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

The Empty House by Rosamunde Pilcher (Review)

The Empty House by Rosamunde Pilcher

Blurb

Virginia Keile has a secret dream. To have a second chance at loving the tall, handsome Cornish farmer she met – and foolishly lost – the heady summer she was a debutante. Life has taught Virginia a great deal in twenty-seven years – about wedding a titled bachelor picked out by her mother, about a lonely marriage that ended in her husband’s accidental death, and about nearly losing her children to her husband’s mother and bossy Nanny. Now she has come back to picturesque Cornwall to rent a battered seaside cottage. For herself and for the children. And to discover if this time she can fill an empty house with love.

Review

Pilcher is one of my all time favourite authors but I still haven’t read all of her books. This one was on offer on the Kindle so I bought it for my holiday. 

I enjoyed this book but sadly I didn’t gel with the main character Virginia. Virginia has spent her entire life so far being pushed around and told what to do, either by her mother, her husband, her mother in law and the family Nanny. Virginia is very good at making excuses, she has a lot of excuses for why she didn’t try to get back into touch with Eustace, she has excuses for why she doesn’t look after her own children and many more besides. To be honest I really disliked Virginia because she was such a weak character. 

Virginia really made her mother out as a baddie but actually I can see some of the reasons behind her mothers actions. Yes, she was also a bit of nightmare but overall she wanted the best for her daughter and wanted to protect her from a man who was a good deal older than her daughter. But Virginia as usual made it out as all her mothers fault rather than taking the blame herself. 

The book really paints Virginia as a victim but to be honest I have little sympathy for her. I also didn’t really like Eustace as he was rude and a bit of a bully. The thing that saved this story for me was Pilcher’s amazing descriptions and nobody can create an atmosphere like Pilcher. Pilcher’s writing is excellent but sadly I just didn’t get along with her characters. Overall, my rating is 3 out of 5 Dragons. 

Purchase Links

Book Depository | Bookshop.org | Foyles | Waterstones | Wordery

(All purchases made using one of the above affiliate links gives a small percentage of money to myself with no extra cost to yourself. All proceeds go towards the upkeep of this blog. Thank you ever so much, your support is gratefully received.)

About the author

Rosamunde Pilcher was born on the 22nd September 1924 in Cornwall. She began writing when she was 7 and published her first short story at the age of 15. From 1943 to 1946 she served with the Women’s Royal Naval Service. In 1946 she married her Graham Hope Pilcher and they moved to Dundee, Scotland together. In 1949 Pilcher’s first novel was published under the pseudonym Jane Fraser, she went on to publish a further ten novels under that name. In 1955 she published her first novel under her own name, by 1965 she had dropped the pseudonym entirely. Pilcher retired from writing in 2000, two years later she received her OBE.

Etsy

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you

WWW Wednesday: 24/08/2022

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words.

The rules are answer the questions below and share a link to your blog in the comments section of Sam’s blog.

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you will read next?

Hello!
I hope everyone is having a good week so far. I have been busy teaching and reading but I have some adventures planned for tomorrow that I am looking forward to.

What I am Currently Reading

I am still really enjoying this book but I must admit I want more Perrin as his storyline is my favourite.

What I have Recently Finished Reading

I took a little break from The Dragon Reborn this read because I needed a nice short read. When reading a large book I quite often like a little break with a short read.

What I Think I will Read Next

As usual I am never sure what I will read next but I might choose one of these. 

Please drop me a comment with your WWW Wednesday and I will head over for a visit.

Happy Reading

If you enjoy reading my blog and would like to make a donation I would be very grateful. Thank you