March Wrap Up

Hello!

Well March has proven to be a strange month and I imagine April will also be strange but if will all stay home and stay safe hopefully everything will be ok.

Being as I am currently not working I have been busy essay writing but also reading, practising my different instruments and doing jigsaws. Two essays are due on Thursday so hopefully they will be ok. I have been managing to read more which is nice.

 

Books I have read in March (if you click on the picture it will take you to the review)

Star Trek Discovery: The Enterprise War by  John Jackson Miller

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Andromache, Hecuba, Trojan Women by Euripides

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Trojan Women by Seneca

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Star Trek Discovery: Dead Endless by Dave Galanter (review to follow)

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Again only a few books but they did include more pages than last month’s books.

Please drop me a comment if you have read any of these books.

Stay safe everyone.

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Sunday Reflections: Psalm 130

Hello everyone!

It is time for my second Sunday reflection, I must admit I almost forgot that it was a Sunday, all the days are blending into one at the moment.

Psalm 130

Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord;

 Lord, hear my voice.

Let your ears be attentive

to my cry for mercy.

If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,

Lord, who could stand?

But with you there is forgiveness,

so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,

and in his word I put my hope.

I wait for the Lord

more than watchmen wait for the morning,

more than watchmen wait for the morning.

Israel, put your hope in the Lord,

for with the Lord is unfailing love

and with him is full redemption.

He himself will redeem Israel

from all their sins.

 

So for this Sunday’s reflection I have chosen the Psalm for the day. The reason I have done this is because from an early age I have always struggled with the psalms and because of this I have avoided them. But no longer will I ignore them, I am determined to read more psalms and think more about them.

Psalm 130 is one of the repentance psalms which are quite often read during Lent. However, with the world in its current crisis with the Coronavirus I find that the first couple of verses we could all be praying each day, desperately wanting God’s help with this awful virus that is claiming so many lives.

The psalm is about our sin and how we are waiting for God. The psalm begins with the psalmist crying out to the Lord from the depths. When we think of depths we think of a hole or deep in the ocean but the psalmist is deep in troubles, they find themselves surrounded by trouble with no way out, so they cry to the Lord.

These troubles that are surrounding the psalmist are in my opinion the sins that they have committed and they are crying out for God’s forgiveness because by admitting our sins and asking for forgiveness we gain God’s forgiveness so we can continue working for the Lord.

The psalm then moves onto waiting and whilst waiting putting our trust in the Lord’s word. So whilst we wait for the Lord what better to do than read our Bibles? Reading our Bibles and taking in the Lord’s word and trusting the Lord’s word so it helps us continue on our path to God.

I really love the part in this psalm where the psalmist associates waiting for the Lord like waiting for the morning. We all have those times where we want the night to be over and for the morning to appear, to see and feel the sun on our faces and to see the beauty of a new morning. This for me is how I like to think of our time with the Lord, to feel the peace and beauty of being in his presence.

The psalm ends with telling us to put our hope and faith in the Lord because the Lord has never-ending love and forgiveness for us. The psalm finishes by giving us hope and an assurance that God is love and he is there for us and all we have to do is trust in his word, ask for forgiveness and continue to live in his light.

This psalm gives me hope during Lent that our waiting will pay off.

Happy Sunday, stay safe and well everyone.

 

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Book Club

Hello!

I hope this post finds everyone safe and well.

So, since Monday we have been on lockdown but before this my husband and myself started self shielding from Wednesday last week as my health is not great, so other than going out for a walk each day and checking on our parents we have been at home. This has meant lots more reading, studying, music and just generally wondering what to do next. I have now started to write a daily To-do list!

However, before the self shielding a local independent bookshop that set up in the town where my sister lives announced they were planning on starting a Book Club. I was very excited about this because I’ve always wanted to join a Book Club but because of work etc I’ve never found one that I can actually get to. This Book Club was going to be on my day off though, so I was planning on joining. Then things got put on hold due to the present circumstances we all find ourselves in. However, I am pleased to announce the book shop has decided to set the Book Club up on Facebook and have accepted my request to join.

This wonderful book shop is called Wyre Forest Books which is in Bewdley, and I was so excited when it opened as some of my fondest memories as a child were visiting an independent book shop called Bewdley Books and sometimes following our visit with a visit to a little sweet shop, what could be better than books and sweets? So I made sure I visited the new book shop as soon as I could. Now I am very worried about this book shop and all independent book shops during this difficult time and want to do my part in keeping them going. However, I am also not currently working and as I am self employed not earning so fund wise I don’t really have many pennies to spare and have decided that if I want to buy a book I will use whatever Waterstones points I have. But to support Wyre Forest Books today I gave them a ring and ordered the first club book read and I plan on ordering all future Book Club reads from there, funds allowing.

So what is the book?

The book is Half a World Away by Mike Gayle

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Strangers living worlds apart.
Strangers with nothing in common.

But it wasn’t always that way…

Kerry Hayes is single mum, living on a tough south London estate. She provides for her son by cleaning houses she could never hope to afford. Taken into care as a child, Kerry cannot ever forget her past.

Noah Martineau is a successful barrister with a beautiful wife, daughter and home in fashionable Primrose Hill. Adopted as a child, Noah always looks forward, never back.

When Kerry reaches out to the sibling she lost on the day they were torn apart as children, she sets in motion a chain of events that will have life-changing consequences for them both.

 

Mike Gayle was meant to be visiting Wyre Forest Books but has sadly had to cancel due to present circumstances but is planning to visit when hopefully normality returns. Hopefully I might get my copy signed!

So that is my exciting news! I will keep you updated about my Book Club adventures.

Here is the Facebook link to my little book shop Wyre Forest Books

My final word today though is support your local book shop if you can, let’s help keep them going so we have a wonderful shop to visit when all this is over and not another closed book shop never to return again. Order a book over the phone or online, buy a book voucher, anything to keep them going, and if you can’t support them financially give them a like and share on social media and show them some love. Thank you my fellow Book Dragons!

Please drop me a comment for a chat!

Stay safe everyone.

Happy Reading

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Friday Poetry: R. S. Thomas

Happy Friday!

I must admit currently the only thing keeping me on track knowing the days of the week is this blog as I am all over the place with not working. I am trying to stay busy though with reading, studying, exercise and a Christmas jigsaw I found. I know it isn’t Christmas but nothing is right at the moment. I have a few lessons booked up to teach online so that will be interesting as I have never taught online before.

Anyway it is poem time…

The Small Window

 

In Wales there are jewels

To gather, but with the eye

Only. A hill lights up

Suddenly; a field trembles

With colour and goes out

In its turn; in one day

You can witness the extent

Of the spectrum and grow rich

With looking. Have a care;

The wealth is for the few

And chosen. Those who crowd

A small window dirty it

With their breathing, though sublime

And inexhaustible the view.

 

R. S. Thomas

 

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WWW Wednesday- 25/03/2020

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

The rules are answer the questions below and a 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 well and getting lots of reading done whilst we are all at home. I myself have managed to get a bit more reading done recently. So here is my WWW Wednesday…

 

What I am currently reading

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Just the one book at the moment but I am dipping into several poetry books. I was planning on reading another book before this but I changed my mind.

 

What I recently finished reading

Two of the books I read for my course and I will admit I loved the Euripides! I finally finished The Enterprise War which has taken me forever and to be honest I am glad that is over as it just dragged so much.

What I will read next

I will put these two on the list but who knows as I do tend to change my mind. I had planned to read The Lantern Men next but decided to stick with Star Trek so we will wait and see what happens when I finish my current read.

 

So that is my WWW Wednesday! Please drop me a comment with the link to your WWW Wednesday or let me know your thoughts on my chosen reads or both.

Stay safe my fellow book dragons.

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Mid Week Quote: Isaac Newton

Hello!

I hope this post finds everyone well and safe. I must admit I am finding it very strange not working. I am reading more and studying so I am trying to fill my days productively.

So here is my chosen quote but I will just mention that this quote is only attributed to Isaac Newton.

 

“Tact is the art of making a point without making an enemy.”

 

Isaac Newton (c. 1650)

 

Happy reading and stay safe everyone.

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Andromache, Hecuba, Trojan Women by Euripides (Review)

Andromache, Hecuba, Trojan Women by Euripides

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About the author

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Euripides (Ancient Greek: Εὐριπίδης) (ca. 480 BC–406 BC) was the last of the three great tragedians of classical Athens (the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles). Ancient scholars thought that Euripides had written ninety-five plays, although four of those were probably written by Critias. Eighteen of Euripides’ plays have survived complete. It is now widely believed that what was thought to be a nineteenth, Rhesus, was probably not by Euripides. Fragments, some substantial, of most of the other plays also survive. More of his plays have survived than those of Aeschylus and Sophocles together, partly because of the chance preservation of a manuscript that was probably part of a complete collection of his works in alphabetical order.

Blurb

Diane Arnson Svarlien’s translation of Euripides’ Andromache, Hecuba, and Trojan Women exhibits the same scholarly and poetic standards that have won praise for her Alcestis, Medea, Hippolytus. Ruth Scodel’s Introduction examines the cultural and political context in which Euripides wrote, and provides analysis of the themes, structure, and characters of the plays included. Her notes offer expert guidance to readers encountering these works for the first time.

Review

I got this book because Trojan Women is a set text that I am studying for my course but I must admit that I enjoyed reading Trojan Women so much I read the whole book.

I found the introduction and notes by Ruth Scodel hugely informative and really helpful with my research but also not too in depth and easy to read which was wonderful because sometimes introductions can be a bit of bore I find.

Andromache

I loved this play and my heart bled for poor Andromache, she really has not had the best of lives having already suffered losing her child and husband in Troy she now suffers in her new home as Neoptolemus’ concubine and risks losing everything including her life again.

Andromache is a wonderful character who tries to do everything she can to save her own life and her child’s and works out a plan that if it works should keep them both safe.

Hermione is a spoilt brat who is used to getting her own way and will do anything to get it and her father will let her get her own way. I found her character rather annoying but you could tell that was what Euripides was after.

My favourite character was Peleus, he was a true gentleman who though mature in years was not frightened to stand up for the weak and vulnerable and send Menelaus scurrying off with his tail between his legs.

I loved this play and would love to see it on stage one day.

Hecuba

Wow! What a character Hecuba is in this play. After everything she has been through with the fall of Troy and the knowledge that her future is bleak she still has strength.

Hecuba has lost her kingdom, her husband, most of her children but she believes her one son and some Trojan treasure is safe with a family friend Polymestor. However, she discovers that her beloved son Polydorus is no longer safe and Hecuba seeks revenge.

Agamemnon in this play seems very different to the Agamemnon that I am used to. He listens to Hecuba’s plea and lets her carry out her plan. He shows pity and in my opinion almost reverence for the fallen queen.

I loved this play because it showed the true power of a woman who seeks revenge.

Trojan Women

This play was heart breaking, you can’t help but feel sorry for the women of Troy and see the unfairness of war on those who are left behind.

Hecuba in this play disappointed me slightly because when she was mourning what she had lost the main thing she kept focusing on was her kingdom and the fact she was no longer queen. Her lost family always seemed to be an after thought.

Cassandra was perfect in my opinion and a hard act for any actress to perform. Poor Cassandra who has been dealt such a hard blow and is now mad.

Andromache, the perfect wife who is now left with nothing who you can’t help but pity. A stark contrast to Helen that you can’t help but hate.

Helen, the woman who brings destruction wherever she goes but gets away with it because of her beauty. Menelaus was basically a lamb to slaughter where Helen was concerned. As much as the women of Troy hated her and Hecuba made the case pretty clear that Helen should be punished, you just know that Menelaus will buckle and let Helen get away with her deeds.

All in all I loved these plays and thought the translation by Diane Arnson Svarlien was really well done, the added stage directions were also excellent. I give this book a big 5 out of 5 Dragons.

Purchase Links

Book Depository

Waterstones

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