July 2020: Wrap Up

Hello Everyone!

I hope everyone has had a good July. I didn’t read as much as I was planning to but still got a few books read. As usual click the book to go to the review.

 

Books I Read in July

All the Lonely People by Mike Gayle

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Pages: 320

Format Read: Kindle

Dragon Rating: 4/5

Waterstones

Book Depository

 

 

 

The Lantern Men by Elly Griffiths

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Pages: 368

Format Read: Hardback

Dragon Rating: 5/5

Waterstones

Book Depository

 

 

 

The Tower is Full of Ghosts Today by Alison Weir

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Pages: 70

Format Read: Kindle

Dragon Rating: 3/5

 

 

 

 

The Chateau of Briis: A Lesson in Love by Alison Weir

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Pages: 79

Format Read: Kindle

Dragon Rating: 4/5

 

 

 

 

Dear NHS: 100 Stories to Say Thank You edited by Adam Kay

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Pages: 408

Format Read: Hardback

Dragon Rating: 3/5

Waterstones

Book Depository

 

 

 

The Iliad by Homer

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Pages: 260

Format Read: Kindle

Dragon Rating: 5/5

Waterstones

Book Depository

 

 

 

Total Books Read: 4

Total E-Shorts Read: 2

Total Pages Read: 1505

So there it is another month done. Please drop me a comment if you want to have a chat!

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First Line Friday: 31/07/2020

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!

 

It is time for another guessing game! Here we go…

“Tell me about a complicated man.”

 

As usual the answer is below the cats.

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The answer is…

The Odyssey by Homer (translated by Emily Wilson)

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Composed at the rosy-fingered dawn of world literature almost three millennia ago, The Odyssey is a poem about violence and the aftermath of war; about wealth, poverty and power; about marriage and family; about travelers, hospitality, and the yearning for home.

This fresh, authoritative translation captures the beauty of this ancient poem as well as the drama of its narrative. Its characters are unforgettable, none more so than the “complicated” hero himself, a man of many disguises, many tricks, and many moods, who emerges in this version as a more fully rounded human being than ever before.

Written in iambic pentameter verse and a vivid, contemporary idiom, Emily Wilson’s Odyssey sings with a voice that echoes Homer’s music; matching the number of lines in the Greek original, the poem sails along at Homer’s swift, smooth pace.

A fascinating, informative introduction explores the Bronze Age milieu that produced the epic, the poem’s major themes, the controversies about its origins, and the unparalleled scope of its impact and influence. Maps drawn especially for this volume, a pronunciation glossary, and extensive notes and summaries of each book make this is an Odyssey that will be treasured by a new generation of readers.

 

Did you guess it? Please drop me a link with your First Lines Friday and I will go over for a visit and see if I can guess the answer.

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WWW Wednesday: 29/07/2020

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!

It is that time again! The weekly reading update is here. I hope everyone is having a good week so far.

 

What I am Currently Reading

I started The Odyssey yesterday so far so good.

 

What I have Recently Finished

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I finished this yesterday and throughly enjoyed it. Click the picture for the review.

 

What I think I will Read Next

It will definitely be one of these but not sure which one yet.

 

There is my WWW Wednesday. Drop me a comment with the link to your WWW Wednesday and I will head over for a visit.

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The Iliad by Homer (Review)

The Iliad by Homer (translated by Alexander Pope)

About the author

Homer is the presumed author of the Iliad and the Odyssey. There are loads of legends regarding the life of Homer however, what we can definitely confirm about him is his centrality to ancient Greek culture.

About the translator

Alexander Pope (1688-1744) is considered one of the greatest English poets, and the foremost poet of the early eighteenth century. He is best known for his satirical and discursive poetry, and his translations of the Iliad and the Odyssesy.

Blurb

The Iliad in Classical Attic; sometimes referred to as the Song of Ilion or Song of Ilium) is an ancient Greek epic poem in dactylic hexameter, traditionally attributed to Homer. Set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy (Ilium) by a coalition of Greek states, it tells of the battles and events during the weeks of a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles.

Review

I have been meaning to read this for many years and have finally got around to it and so I chose Alexander Pope’s translation that I had also used for a recent assignment.

Although I had never read this in its entirety before I am well aware of the story and have loved anything Greek Myth based since I can remember.

It took me a while to get into this as I must admit I found the translation rather stilted to begin with. However, once I got into the style I really began to enjoy the text and was happily reading it whenever I could.

This poem is absolutely wonderful. It has love, sex, violence, friendship and much more. Oh and it also has some very interfering Greek Gods who can’t help but meddle in the Greek and Trojan affairs.

The war between the Trojans and the Greeks begins because of Paris stealing Helen from Menelaus, or Helen went willingly depending on your take of events. Menelaus goes to his brother Agamemnon who immediately uses the situation to go to war on the Trojans who he has long wanted to conquer. Achilles the half man half god hero is the main character in this tale who goes to war with Agamemnon. Achilles does not take being told what to do well though and causes many problems for Agamemnon, including refusing to fight in the war for a very long time.

This is essentially a love story and not a love story about Paris and Helen. This is the love story of Achilles and Patroclus. Patroclus is everything that Achilles isn’t. He is a much better man, he is loving and he hates to see all the death caused by the war, he wants to help stop this war. Achilles on the other hand is too proud and when his pride is injured he refuses to help and does not care about the damage it causes.

Overall, I can see why this book has lasted through the centuries as I absolutely loved this book and I really want to read other translations of the text to see how different translators treat the story. I give this book a big 5 out of 5 Dragons.

Purchase Links

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The Weekly Brief

Welcome to the first Weekly Brief!

This post will appear every Sunday and it will list the past weeks posts (links included), a reading update and what books I have acquired in the week. Oh, and probably anything else I randomly think of.

Posts this week

 

Currently Reading

 

Books Acquired

Looking forward to reading these soon.

 

So that is my first Weekly Brief. Now I’m off to take the lemon drizzle cake out of the oven.

Have a good week everyone.

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Mid Week Quote: Joss Whedon

Happy Wednesday!

My chosen quote today is by the great Joss Whedon, the creator of so many of my favourite TV shows and films. The current one that I am watching being the Buffy the Vampire Slayer series.

 

“Write it. Shoot it. Publish it. Crochet it, sauté it, whatever. MAKE.”

 

Joss Whedon

 

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The Chateau of Briis: A Lesson in Love by Alison Weir (E-Short Review)

The Chateau of Briis: A Lesson in Love by Alison Weir

About the author

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Alison Weir was born in 1951 and is a British writer of history books, and latterly historical novels, mostly in the form of biographies about British Royalty.

Blurb

1515 – Dressed in wine-coloured satin, with her dark hair worn loose, a young Anne Boleyn attends a great ball at the French court. The palace is exquisitely decorated for the occasion, and the hall is full with lords and ladies – the dancing has begun. Anne adores watching the game of courtly love play out before her eyes, though she is not expecting to be thrown into it herself. But moments later, a charming young man named Philippe du Moulin approaches to ask for her hand in the dance. And before she can resist, so begins Anne’s first lesson in love.

Review

Another short story from the Six Tudor Queens series and I must admit I really enjoyed this one. It was somewhat more satisfying than The Tower is Full of Ghosts Today as that just left me feeling a bit frustrated with the story.

This is a wonderful little story but it was a little emotional rollercoaster. Anne Boleyn has her first lesson in love in this story and although it is only something Weir has made up it would explain a great deal about Anne Boleyn’s character. I couldn’t help but feel sorry for her at times.

This little glimpse into Anne’s life in the French court is wonderful and full of detail. I throughly enjoyed it but again found it was very short, just a few extra pages and I would have been happier but it is a perfect little novella to read between Anne Boleyn: A King’s Obsession and Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen. I have given this story 4 out of 5 Dragons.

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The Tower is Full of Ghosts Today by Alison Weir (E-Short Review)

The Tower is Full of Ghosts Today by Alison Weir

About the author

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Alison Weir was born in 1951 and is a British writer of history books, and latterly historical novels, mostly in the form of biographies about British Royalty.

Blurb

Jo, historian and long-term admirer of Anne Boleyn, takes a group on a guided tour of the Tower of London, to walk in the shoes of her Tudor heroine. But as she becomes enthralled by the historical accuracy of her tour guide and the dramatic setting that she has come to love, something spectral is lurking in the shadows . . .

Review

I am sure I have read this little story before but I don’t know where from as I have never owned it. I do not mind though as I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this little story again.

I have always been fascinated by the history of the Tower of London and have often thought it is probably the home to many ghosts so this little story is right up my street.

This little story centres around a tour group who Jo is in charge of and she books a special tour guide to take them all around the Tower. This tour guide is dressed up like Anne Boleyn and looks incredible, everyone is impressed. As the tour progresses though a spectral figure is spotted in another group.

I really enjoyed this story but it was just too short! Seven pages just wasn’t enough. I was begging Weir to make it longer but sadly no. I loved the detail in this story, the detail of the Anne Boleyn lookalike tour guide’s dress was fantastically described and had me hooked. I can sadly only give this short story 3 out of 5 Dragons because it was just too short for me.

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WWW Wednesday: 15/07/2020

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?

 

Happy Wednesday!

I am very happy because yet again I have another week where I can take part in this meme because I have read and finished some books this week. I hope my fellow book bloggers have also had a good reading week.

 

What I am Currently Reading

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This wasn’t my intended next read but it arrived in the post and I started the first few pages and became hooked. It is so far a brilliant read and very emotional in places.

 

What I have Recently Finished Reading

I finished The Lantern Men earlier this week and then read the two E-Shorts by Alison Weir in preparation for reading the next book in the Six Tudor Queens series.

 

What I will read next

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I said that I would read this next on last week’s post but I promise this will be my next read.

So that is my WWW Wednesday for this week. Please drop me a comment with any thoughts of the books I have listed and of course if you have also taken part in WWW Wednesday please leave your link and I will head over for a visit.

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