Favorites of 2015

Most recommended book: Circling The Sun 

Best Backlist: The Slap

Book I want everyone to read: Born to Walk

Best Survival Story: The Mountain Story

Best Literary Fiction: The Fishermen

Best Canadian (small press): The Mystics of Mile End

Best Canadian: Us Conductors

Best Book in Translation: The Truth and Other Lies

Best Unexpected Read: The Invaders



Calling on all readers!

Friends and readers, I’m calling on your skills and expertise to help me. I’m working on a bit of a side project and I need you to help me brainstorm a little.

I’m looking for novels that are based on the lives of real life, historical people set in the early 20th century. Circling The Sun by Paula McLain is exactly the type of book I’m looking for. So far I’ve gathered this list. What can you add to it?

Z by Therese Anne FowlercoverCollage

Local Customs by Audrey Thomas

Under the Wide and Starry Sky by Nancy Horan

Loving Frank by Nancy Horan

The Visitors by Sally Beauman

Mrs. Hemingway by Naomi Wood

Villa America by Liza Klaussmann

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

The Goddess of Small Victories by Yannik Grannec

The Indian Clark by David Leavitt

The Confabulist by Steven Galloway

Arctic Summer by Damon Galgut

Us Conductors by Sean Michaels

Mademoiselle Chanel by C.W. Gornter

Above All Things by Tanis Rideout.

Mr. Mac And Me by Esther Freud

Let me know what I’m missing and I’ll add to my list.


#30Authors Presents Richard Alley on Memphis Movie

#30authors2015It’s September, and you know what that means? One of the biggest events to hit the Book-ternet – #30Authors! Continue reading

Better Than The Book? The Podcast Edition

If there are two things i do consistently, they are read and listen to podcasts. Which is why I love it when a book crosses over into the podcast realm. Yeah, like books that get made into movies, mini-series or TV shows – only better.

I can really only think of two examples where this has been done really well. In fact, i prefer the podcasts to the books!

Are there other podcasts out there based on books? Which ones do you recommend?

Top Ten Tuesday: Summer Reading List

Ah, summer. It doesn’t feel like summer in Scotland these days, but according to the calendar, it is indeed summer. The program for the Edinburgh Book Festival has come out, so that means most of my summer will be dedicated to reading in preparation for it, with a few others thrown in for good measure.

  1. Villa America by Liza Klaussman. It’s Klaussman, so I’m going to read it anyways, but she’s also coming to Edinburgh! I’ve been waiting to read this for a while, and for once it is available in the UK before it comes out in North America.
  2. In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume. Enough said. And she’s not coming to Edinburgh.
  3. Bradstreet Gate by Robin Kirman. It’s described as a campus murder for fans of Tartt, Eugenides and Wolitzer. Yes please!
  4. The Way Things Were by Aatish Taseer. He’s coming to EdBookFest and I’m interested. Besides, he learned Sanskrit to write this book and I love me some Sanskrit.
  5. The Mark and the Void by Paul Murray. Loved Skippy Dies and he’ll be at EdBookFest.


  6. Man on Fire by Stephen Kelman. Will be appearing at EdBookFest with Paul Murray. And I will likely read Pigeon English as well because it’s already on my desk.
  7. The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan. Big buzz in India and I’m so glad it’s also being published in the UK.
  8. The Incarnations by Susan Barker. She’ll be at EdBookFest and I think this book is going to be BIG.
  9. The Ecliptic by Benjamin Wood. I saw him at EdBookFest when he was promoting his last novel, The Bellweather Revivals. Loved him, loved the book and he’ll be back in Edinburgh this summer.
  10. This is my wild card. Let’s keep it a mystery for now.

What Blume are you?

After 12 long years, Judy Blume has come out with another novel for adults, In the Unlikely Event. This has created a lot of conversation about the books of Blume’s that we all grew up with. It’s hard to find anyone who’s awkward years were not impacted in a positive way by at least one of Judy Blume’s many books. For me, Blubber is my all time favorite, with Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret and Then Again Maybe I Won’t following closely behind. I’m always surprised when one of these books does not rank with other fans. Continue reading

Armchair BEA – Introduction

abeaThat’s right, it’s the most exciting time of the year! Book Expo America (BEA). But for the poor sods like me who can’t make it to New York, we have Armchair BEA – all the bookish goodness of BEA without having to get out of pajamas!

On to Introductions! In the answers to just 5 questions I get to share all sorts of vital information with you (and I’m probably not going to stick to the questions). Continue reading

Readathon – Better Late Than Never!

I wasn’t going to participate in Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon but the peer pressure (and bad weather) have gotten to me. I’m going to do it, and I’m not alone. For the first time ever, my daughter will participating as well. And we will be reading to raise money for a new playground at her school.

Sophia will be focusing on a tome of a book, Opal Plumstead by Jacqueline Wilson (520 pages!!).

My list of potential books includes:


As we are reading for charity, we will raise 10p per page, to a maximum of £20 to go to Sciennes Primary School Playground Improvement.

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Authors Edition


Listing one’s favorite authors is like picking your favorite children – it just shouldn’t be done and is messy business. And yet, here I am doing it just the same thanks to The Broke and The Bookish.

To make it a little harder on myself I am only including authors who are still alive and have written at least 3 books so far. I know that excludes a lot of writers, but I had to make the list manageable somehow. Continue reading