January 2023 Wrap Up

Hello!

Welcome to the first Wrap Up of 2023. I really can’t believe we are already at the end of January, it seems to have flown by.

I am really pleased with the reading I have managed in January, I just hope I can keep it up for the rest of the year 2023.

Statistics

Books

Pages: 388

Format Read: Hardback

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲🐲🐲

Review

Pages: 91

Format Read: Paperback

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲

Review

Pages: 468

Format Read: Paperback

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲🐲🐲

Review

Pages: 576

Format Read: Paperback (Proof Copy)

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲

Review

Pages: 304

Format Read: Hardback

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲🐲🐲

Review

Pages: 144

Format Read: Paperback

Dragon Rating: 🐲🐲🐲🐲

Review

6/80 Goodreads Monday

I’m really pleased I managed to read one non-fiction book and an Ancient Greek book this month hopefully I can continue. I had wanted to finish a book off my Classics Club list as well but I haven’t quite finished it yet but I do only have 40 pages left so it won’t be long.

I hope everyone had a good January for reading.

Happy Reading

Etsy

Goodreads Monday: 30/01/2023

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.

Happy Monday!

I hope everyone has had a good start to the week so far. I have had a rather long day but I did manage a bit of reading during my lunch break which is good as I am taking part in the Bookly Readathon over the next few days.

Taking place in the years leading up to the First Reform Bill of 1832, Middlemarch explores nearly every subject of concern to modern life: art, religion, science, politics, self, society, human relationships. Among her characters are some of the most remarkable portraits in English literature: Dorothea Brooke, the heroine, idealistic but naive; Rosamond Vincy, beautiful and egoistic: Edward Casaubon, the dry-as-dust scholar: Tertius Lydgate, the brilliant but morally-flawed physician: the passionate artist Will Ladislaw: and Fred Vincey and Mary Garth, childhood sweethearts whose charming courtship is one of the many humorous elements in the novel’s rich comic vein.

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

Happy Reading

Etsy

The Weekly Brief

Hello!

I hope everyone is having a good weekend so far. My husband and myself only had to work this morning so we decided to go out for lunch which was a nice treat.

Blogging wise I am still up to date with all my reviews and the reading is going well.

Posts this Week

Currently Reading

Happy Reading

Etsy

Darkness Rising by A. A. Dhand (Review #6)

Darkness Rising by A. A. Dhand

Blurb

Detective Inspector Harry Virdee has a lot on his plate. His team is facing government cuts, tensions are building between Bradford’s two rival drugs gangs and his wife Saima is due to give birth any day now.

So when bodies start turning up in the old industrial district, the pressure is on to get the case wrapped up as quickly as possible, or risk a full-scale gang war.

But the man behind the murders is ruthless and pushy. And things are getting personal. Harry must think fast and bend the rules if he wants to keep his city, and his family, safe . . .

Review

I picked this up because I was craving a quick and easy read and I always find the Quick Reads series perfect for this. As soon as I picked this book up and started reading it I couldn’t put it down. 

I really like the character of Harry Virdee. Harry wants to protect Bradford, he wants to make it a good place again because it is his home and he has happy memories there as well as painful ones. However, Harry doesn’t always play by the rules that a man of the law should play by. He likes to bend them slightly to get the results he needs. 

Along with cleaning the streets of Bradford from crime with a skeleton team due to cuts he also has a heavily pregnant wife at home who could go into labour at anytime. This can lead to quite a stressful situation when multiple murders suddenly take place and Harry must try and find the murderer.

This book is fast paced and action packed and keeps the reader engaged from start to finish. And unlike certain Quick Reads books it feels like a proper story and not a cut down or rushed story. Although the book doesn’t give much chance for the characters to develop or for the reader to learn the characters’ history, it is a perfect introduction to the series where you hope that you will learn more about the main characters. 

I really enjoyed this book and I plan on reading the next book in the series as soon as it arrives because I am not willing to abandon the characters just yet. I give this book 4 out of 5 Dragons. 

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Purchase Links

Book Depository | 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

A.A. Dhand was raised in Bradford and spent his youth observing the city from behind the counter of a small convenience store. After qualifying as a pharmacist, he worked in London and travelled extensively before returning to Bradford to start his own business and begin writing. The history, diversity and darkness of the city have inspired his Harry Virdee novels.

Etsy

Friday Poetry: Charles Causley

Happy Friday!

I hope you all have some fab plans for the weekend.

My chosen poem for this week is by the English poet, school teacher and writer Charles Causley (1917-2003).

I am the Song

I am the song that sings the bird.
I am the leaf that grows the land.
I am the tide that moves the moon.
I am the stream that halts the sand.
I am the cloud that drives the storm.
I am the earth that lights the sun.
I am the fire that strikes the stone.
I am the clay that shapes the hand.
I am the word that speaks the man.

Charles Causley

Happy Reading

Etsy

First Lines Friday: 27/01/2023

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

Happy Friday!

I hope everyone has had a good week so far. I started a new book this evening so I thought I would feature it on First Lines Friday.

“Zak Choudary was sitting alone by the window inside a late-night kebab shop on Great Horton Road. It was midnight.

Freedom

After four years of prison”

Get Guessing

Detective Inspector Harry Virdee has a lot on his plate. His team is facing government cuts, tensions are building between Bradford’s two rival drugs gangs and his wife Saima is due to give birth any day now.

So when bodies start turning up in the old industrial district, the pressure is on to get the case wrapped up as quickly as possible, or risk a full-scale gang war.

But the man behind the murders is ruthless and pushy. And things are getting personal. Harry must think fast and bend the rules if he wants to keep his city, and his family, safe . . .

Did anybody guess correctly?

Please drop me a comment with your First Line Friday and I will head over for a visit.

Happy Reading

Etsy

The Greek Myths that Shape the Way We Think by Richard Buxton (Review #5)

The Greek Myths that Shape the Way We Think by Richard Buxton

Blurb

How do ancient Greek myths find themselves retold and reinterpreted in cultures across the world, several millennia later? In this volume, bestselling author Richard Buxton explores the power that eight iconic Greek myths hold in the modern world. Buxton traces these stories and archetypes from their ancient forms through their transformations over time in literature, art, cinema, psychology, and politics.

Review

I bought this book and started reading it last year but I only read the first chapter then for some reason I stopped reading it. This week I decided to pick the book back up and I will be honest I couldn’t put it down or work out why I stopped reading it in the first place. 

As my regular followers will probably know I completed a Masters degree in Classics a couple of years ago and since then I try to regularly read nonfiction about Ancient Greece and Rome. I have never read anything by Buxton before so I was excited to read this book and see what Buxton had to say about some of the myths we know so well. 

The first thing I realised about this book was just how accessible it was. You really don’t have to have a background in Classics to understand this book because Buxton explains everything in a way that anybody can understand. He explains the original myth and what texts the myth appears in. He then explains how the myths appear in Ancient Roman texts and plays and goes from there through history right to modern day. There were some films that he mentioned like The Others (2001) starring Nicole Kidman that I hadn’t even associated with an Ancient Greek myth but when Buxton highlighted the fact it all became clear. 

The other thing I loved about this book was the clever use of images. It is really clear that Buxton has carefully selected his visual sources to help highlight his examples. The images are of ancient vases, ancient sculptors, medieval paintings and modern day images from movies. The images are mainly black and white but there are also some fantastic colour images. 

I will be honest the book only skimmed the edges of the political and psychological aspects of the ancient myths but I suspect that was because Buxton wanted to keep the book as accessible as possible. The focus on the literature, art and cinema definitely makes it more relatable for people. I would have liked a more in-depth look at the political and psychological aspects but I’m not overly disappointed. 

I really enjoyed this book and once I started reading it this week I couldn’t put it down. The book is a fantastic introduction for people who are not familiar with the Ancient Greek myths and makes the myths applicable and relevant to modern day thinking. The book is expertly researched and written and a fantastic read. I will definitely be reading more books by Buxton. 5 out of 5 Dragons from me. 

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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

Richard Buxton works on ancient Greek literature (especially tragedy), and ancient mythology and religion. One of his main aims is to explore the contexts – for example, social life and the landscape – which can help us to recover the meanings which myths had for their tellers and hearers/readers (see his Imaginary Greece, 1994, and The Complete World of Greek Mythology, 2004).

In 1996 he organized a major international conference at Bristol, whose proceedings appeared as From Myth to Reason? (1999) Since 2003 he has been one of the editors of Thesaurus Cultus et Rituum Antiquorum and since 2006 he has been President of the LIMC Foundation. His book ‘Forms of Astonishment: Greek Myths of Metamorphosis’ was published in 2009. He will next be revising for publication a selection of his papers on Greek myth and tragedy.

He has taken part in a number of radio programs about myth. His work has been translated into nine languages.

Etsy

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

WWW Wednesday: 25/01/2023

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 saw a lovely thing today whilst at school. Children were outside during first break with their books reading together, apparently they have set up their own little bookclub and it was just wonderful to see a group of children enjoying reading together and talking about what they were reading.

What I am Currently Reading

I am only 15 pages into this so far as I started it during my lunch break at school today.

What I have Recently Finished Reading

I must admit I didn’t really enjoy Who Killed Jerusalem? that much. It was one of those books that felt too much like hard work. Here is the review. I just finished The Greek Myths by Richard Buxton and I absolutely loved it! Review will follow shortly.

What I Think I will Read Next

I think I will definitely read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius in February as that is my next ancient text I want to read but I’m not sure what other books I will read In February.

Please drop me a comment with your WWW Wednesday 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

Persephone Books

Hello!

Now you might have noticed that Persephone Books in Bath is one of my all time favourite book shops. I love the books that Persephone Books produce because they have introduced me to authors I have never come across before. After a few trips to Bath I have a growing collection of Persephone Books to read and this year I have decided to really make an effort to read the books I own and also increase my collection of Persephone Books.

So lets see how many of the Persephone Books I can read…

  1. William – an Englishman by Cicely Hamilton
  2. Mariana by Monica Dickens
  3. Someone at a Distance by Dorothy Whipple
  4. Fidelity by Susan Glaspell
  5. An Interrupted Life: The Diaries and Letters of Etty Hillesum 1941-42 by Etty Hillesum
  6. The Victorian Chaise-longue by Marghanita Laski
  7. The Home-Maker by Dorothy Canfield Fisher
  8. Good Evening, Mrs Craven: The Wartime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes by Mollie Panter-Downes
  9. Few Eggs and No Oranges by Vere Hodgson
  10. Good Things in England by Florence White
  11. Julian Grenfell by Nicholas Mosley
  12. It’s Hard to Be Hip Over Thirty by Judith Viorst
  13. Consequences by E M Delafield
  14. Farewell Leicester Square by Betty Miller
  15. Tell It to a Stranger by Elizabeth Berridge
  16. Saplings by Noel Streatfield
  17. Marjory Fleming by Oriel Malet
  18. Every Eye by Isobel English
  19. They Knew Mr Knight by Dorothy Whipple
  20. A Woman’s Place: 1910-75 by Ruth Adam
  21. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson
  22. Consider the Years by Viginia Graham
  23. Reuben Sachs by Amy Levy
  24. Family Roundabout by Richmal Crompton
  25. The Montana Stories by Katherine Mansfield
  26. Brook Evans by Susan Glaspell
  27. The Children who Lived in a Barn by Eleanor Graham
  28. Little Boy Lost by Marghanita Laski
  29. The Making of Marchioness by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  30. Kitchen Essays by Agnes Jekyll
  31. A House in the Country by Jocelyn Playfair
  32. The Carlyles at Home by Thea Holme
  33. The Far Cry by Emma Smith
  34. Minnie’s Room: The Peacetime Stories of Mollie Panter-Downes by Mollie Panter-Downes
  35. Greenery Street by Denis Mackail
  36. Lettice Delmer by Susan Miles
  37. The Runaway by Elizabeth Anna Hart
  38. Cheerful Weather for the Wedding by Julia Strachey
  39. Manja by Anna Gmeyner
  40. The Priory by Dorothy Whipple
  41. Hostages to Fortune by Elizabeth Cambridge
  42. The Blank Wall by Elisabeth Sanxay Holding
  43. The Wise Virgins by Leonard Woolf
  44. Tea with Mr Rochester by Frances Towers
  45. Good Food on the Aga by Ambrose Heath
  46. Miss Ranskill Comes Home by Barbara Euphan Todd
  47. The New House by Lettice Cooper
  48. The Casino by Margaret Bonham
  49. Bricks and Mortar by Helen Ashton
  50. The World that was Ours by Hilda Bernstein
  51. Operation Heartbreak by Duff Cooper
  52. The Village by Marghanita Laski
  53. Lady Rose and Mrs Memmary by Ruby Ferguson
  54. They can’t Ration These by Vicomte de Mauduit
  55. Flush by Virginia Woolf
  56. They Were Sisters by Dorothy Whipple
  57. The Hopkins Manuscript by RC Sherriff
  58. Hetty Dorval by Ethel Wilson
  59. There Were No Windows by Norah Hoult
  60. Doreen by Barbara Noble
  61. A London Child of the 1870s by Molly Hughes
  62. How To Run Your Home Without Help by Kay Smallshaw
  63. Princes in the Land by Joanna Cannan
  64. The Woman Novelist and Other Stories by Diana Gardner
  65. Alas, Poor Lady by Rachel Ferguson
  66. Gardener’s Nightcap by Muriel Stuart
  67. The Fortnight in September by RC Sherriff
  68. The Expendable Man by Dorothy B Hughes
  69. Journal by Katherine Mansfield
  70. Plats du Jour by Patience Gray
  71. The Shuttle by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  72. House-Bound by Winifred Peck
  73. The Young Pretenders by Edith Henrietta Fowler
  74. The Closed Door and Other Stories by Dorothy Whipple
  75. On the Other Side: Letters to my Children from Germany 1940–46 by Mathilde Wolff-Mönckeberg
  76. The Crowded Street by Winifred Holtby
  77. Daddy’s Gone A-Hunting by Penelope Mortimer
  78. A Very Great Profession by Nicola Beauman
  79. Round About a Pound a Week by Maud Pember Reeves
  80. The Country Housewife’s Book by Lucy H Yates
  81. Miss Buncle’s Book by DE Stevenson
  82. Amours de Voyage by Arthur Hugh Clough
  83. Making Conversation by Christine Longford
  84. A New System of Domestic Cookery by Mrs Rundell
  85. High Wages by Dorothy Whipple
  86. To Bed With Grand Music by Marghanita Laski
  87. Dimanche and Other Stories by Irène Némirovsky
  88. Still Missing by Beth Gutcheon
  89. The Mystery of Mrs Blencarrow by Mrs Oliphant
  90. The Winds of Heaven by Monica Dickens
  91. Miss Buncle Married by DE Stevenson
  92. Midsummer Night in the Workhouse by Diana Athill
  93. The Sack of Bath by Adam Fergusson
  94. No Surrender by Constance Maud
  95. Greenbanks by Dorothy Whipple
  96. Dinners for Beginners by Rachel and Margaret Ryan
  97. Harriet by Elizabeth Jenkins
  98. A Writer’s Diary by Virginia Woolf
  99. Patience by John Coates
  100. The Persephone Book of Short Stories by Persephone Books
  101. Heat Lightning by Helen Hull
  102. The Exiles Return by Elisabeth de Waal
  103. The Squire by Enid Bagnold
  104. The Two Mrs Abbotts by DE Stevenson
  105. Diary of a Provincial Lady by E M Delafield
  106. Into the Whirlwind by Eugenia Ginzburg
  107. Wilfred and Eileen by Jonathan Smith
  108. The Happy Tree by Rosalind Murray
  109. The Country Life Cookery Book by Ambrose Heath
  110. Because of the Lockwoods by Dorothy Whipple
  111. London War Notes by Mollie Panter-Downes
  112. Vain Shadow by Jane Hervey
  113. Greengates by RC Sherriff
  114. Gardeners’ Choice by Evelyn Dunbar and Charles Mahoney
  115. Maman, What Are We Called Now? by Jacqueline Mesnil-Amar
  116. A Lady and Her Husband by Amber Reeves
  117. The Godwits Fly by Robin Hyde
  118. Every Good Deed and Other Stories by Dorothy Whipple
  119. Long Live Great Bardfield by Tirzah Garwood
  120. Madame Solario by Gladys Huntington
  121. Effi Briest by Theodor Fontane
  122. Earth and High Heaven by Gwethalyn Graham
  123. Emmeline by Judith Rossner
  124. The Journey Home and Other Stories by Malachi Whitaker
  125. Guard Your Daughters by Diana Tutton
  126. Despised and Rejected by Rose Allatini
  127. Young Anne by Dorothy Whipple
  128. Tory Heaven by Marghanita Laski
  129. The Call by Edith Ayrton Zangwill
  130. National Provincial by Lettice Cooper
  131. Milton Place by Elisabeth de Waal
  132. The Second Persephone Book of Short Stories by Persephone Books
  133. Expiation by Elizabeth von Arnim
  134. A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
  135. One Woman’s Year by Stella Martin Currey
  136. The Oppermanns by Lion Feuchtwanger
  137. English Climate: Wartime Stories by Sylvia Townsend Warner
  138. The New Magdalen by Wilkie Collins
  139. Random Commentary by Dorothy Whipple
  140. The Rector’s Daughter by F M Mayor
  141. The Deepening Stream by Dorothy Canfield Fisher
  142. As It Was by Helen Thomas
  143. A Well Full of Leaves by Elizabeth Myers
  144. The Other Day by Dorothy Whipple
  145. The Waters under the Earth by John Moore

I know the list is huge and books are always getting added but I would love to read more off the list.

Have you read any of these books?

Happy Reading

Etsy