This is part of the weekly meme over at the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, where book bloggers can share the books and blogs they have written.
Last Sunday we had the pleasure of Oscar’s company for the week-end and on Sunday we went to the Look and Sea Centre for breakfast, before walking down to the beach and out onto the small pier where we could watch boats negotiate the entrance of the River Arun. It was another wonderful, sunny day and later we took my sister with us when driving Oscar home so she could visit Rebecca’s home and amazing garden.
I’ve been working hard on the line edit for Dying for Space and also treating myself to watching Wimbledon, which I love. On Friday evening we had a meal at my sister’s and played Nostalgia and Dobble after going through her photo album of us as girls and remembering family holidays another lifetime ago…
This week I have read:
Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood
In Margaret Atwood’s ‘novel take’ on Shakespeare’s original, theatre director Felix has been unceremoniously ousted from his role as Artistic Director of the Makeshiweg Festival. When he lands a job teaching theatre in a prison, the possibility of revenge presents itself – and his cast find themselves taking part in an interactive and illusion-ridden version of The Tempest that will change their lives forever.
I loved this one – there are so many clever allusions and nods to Shakespeare’s play embedded in this entertaining story of revenge and redemption. But Atwood doesn’t allow them to hamper her narrative pace – great stuff! I’ll be reviewing this one in due course.
The Last Straw – Book 3 of the Diary of a Wimpey Kid series by Jeff Kinney
Let’s face it: Greg Heffley will never change his wimpy ways. Somebody just needs to explain that to Greg’s father. You see, Frank Heffley actually thinks he can get his son to toughen up, and he enlists Greg in organized sports and other “manly” endeavors. Of course, Greg is easily able to sidestep his father’s efforts to change him. But when Greg’s dad threatens to send him to military academy, Greg realizes he has to shape up . . . or get shipped out.
Oscar was keen to get this one out of the library when he came to stay last week-end and between us, we managed to finish reading the story before he went home on Sunday afternoon. I was impressed at the humour and strong narrative, as well as how accessible the vocabulary is for emerging young readers – no wonder these books are so popular. Review to follow.
The Stargazer’s Embassy by Eleanor Lerman
The Stargazer’s Embassy explores the frightening phenomenon of alien abduction from a different point of view: in this story, it is the aliens who seem fearful of Julia Glazer, the woman they are desperately trying to make contact with.
This is an interesting and unusual approach to this subject, where Julia’s fury at being constantly visited throughout her life has affected her, making her suspicious and hostile of humans and aliens alike.
Face the Change – Book 3 of the Menopausal Superheroes series by Samantha Bryant
The Menopausal Superheroes are coming out of the closet and the pressure is high, on the job and on the homefront. Now that he knows what it’s like to be a hero, Leonel “Fuerte” Alvarez can’t imagine going back to his former life as a grandmother and housewife. But putting his life on the line may cost him his husband even while he saves the city. Jessica “Flygirl” Roark is holding on to her second chance at love with both hands while learning to balance single parenthood with her new career in crime-fighting. Patricia “Lizard Woman” O’Neill is blindsided by an unexpected romance just as she signs on to join the team. Meanwhile enemies abound–old and new. When superpowers alone aren’t enough, what a woman really needs are her friends.
I jumped at the opportunity to review this entertaining and unusual take of the superhero genre and it didn’t disappoint. I shall be posting my review this coming week.
Star Witch – Book 2 of The Lazy Girl’s Guide to Magic series by Helen Harper
Ivy Wilde, the laziest witch in the West, is still entangled with the Hallowed Order of Magical Enlightenment. That’s not a bad thing, however, because it gives her plenty of excuses to spend more time with sapphire eyed Raphael Winter, her supposed nemesis. And when he comes knocking because he needs her to spy on the latest series of Enchantment, she jumps at the chance. Hanging around a film set can’t be hard … or dangerous … right?
I thoroughly enjoyed the smart snappy writing of the first book – and was delighted when Himself treated us to this second instalment. Another real delight to read and I shall be posting my review in due course.
My posts last week:
*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of How to Stop Time by Matt Haig
Teaser Tuesday featuring Face the Change – Book 3 of the Menopausal Superheroes series by Samantha Bryant
*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Dichronauts by Greg Egan
*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The Stargazer’s Embassy by Eleanor Lerman
Friday Face-off – I must go down to the sea again…featuring Ship of Magic – Book 1 of the Liveship Traders series by Robin Hobb
*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Slouch Witch – Book 1 of The Lazy Girl’s Guide to Magic series by Helen Harper
Interesting/outstanding blogs and articles that have caught my attention during the last week, in no particular order:
Peace Talks 101 – https://wandaluthman.wordpress.com/2017/07/10/peace-talks-101/ Now the children are at home for the summer break, World War 3 can break out between siblings – these top tips help you cope…
Anne Valley Walk – https://inesemjphotography.com/2017/07/09/anne-valley-walk/ Inese talks us on a wonderful walk featuring the fauna and flora…
Proxima Centauri b keeps getting attention http://earthianhivemind.net/2017/07/12/proxima-centauri-b-keeps-getting-attention/ Another excellent article from Steph about some of the latest investigations on one of our near neighbours.
Six Word Stories: Wet – https://richardankers.com/2017/07/12/six-word-stories-wet/ Another snappy gem from Richard…
10 of the Best Plays by Women Dramatists – https://interestingliterature.com/2017/07/12/10-of-the-best-plays-by-women-dramatists/ An interesting, informative article on some of the foremost women dramatists through the ages.
Thank you very much for taking the time and trouble to visit, like and comment on my site and may you have a great week.
I am eyeing Hag-Seed…I enjoy a lot of what Margaret Atwood writes, the exception being the MaddAddam series.
I read and enjoyed another of the Hogarth Shakespearen series: Anne Tyler’s Vinegar Girl.
Have a great week, and thanks for visiting my blog.
I’m not always a fan of her writing, but I cannot recommend this one highly enough. I must get hold of the rest of the Hogarth Shakespearean series as I think it is a great idea. Have a great week, Laurel.
It sounds like you had a wonderful week, Sarah. And you read some really good-sounding books, too–the Margaret Atwood and The Stargazer’s Embassy sound especially good to me.
I hope you have a great week!
They are both interesting books with an unusual take and well written, Jan. I hope you, too, have a great week, despite the heat and those Japanese beetles!
Glad you’ve had some amazing weather, and family time as well. I’ve seen the Diary of a Wimpy Kid books around of course, but didn’t realize there were quite so well done. And thanks for the link to Anne Valley Walk- I enjoyed that a lot.
I haven’t watched any Wimbledon but I’ve been hearing a little about it.
I’ve just watched the closing match of the tournament, Greg:). I love watching it…
Star-Witch series sounds really good! And I’ve read a lot of positive reviews too 🙂 Sounds like you had a good week 🙂
Yes – it was a good week, Anastasia:). Yes – I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the first two books in the series and I’m looking forward to reading the third next month.
I’m glad that you were still able to read, even though you had some fun company! Have a good week, and happy reading! 🙂
Thank you – yes… I managed to get a fair amount of reading done this week:). I hope you, too, enjoy your books this week!
Your weekend sounds wonderful, Sarah. We had rain, and rain, and let’s see….more rain. Ugh. Such a wet summer. Looking forward to your reviews for these interesting books.
My Sunday Post
Oh I’m sorry to hear about the wet weather you’re having, Laura:(. This has been the best summer we’ve had since 2006!
I enjoy checking out Shakespeare retellings and Hag-Seed is one that’s been on my list for a long time! I’m so happy you loved it, I hope I can get to it soon 😀
Yes, I really recommend it. An entertaining story without a hint of literary snobbery – but all sorts of clever, cool parallels if you really know The Tempest…
What a awesome week you had. I only read two books last week. I hope you have another wonderful week. Anyway, thanks for sharing the other blog links. I always love reading other blogs’ articles. Happy reading, my friend. 😁
I hope you, too, have a great reading week:))
Sounds like you had a fun weekend with Oscar. And those wonderful visits with your sister, too. You must feel blessed to have her living so closeby now. 🙂
I don’t read the Wimpy Kids series, but I do know that the author Jeff Kinney and his wife live in the town next door to me. They also own a fantastic indie bookstore called An Unlikely Story. Actually, I think I might have written about the bookstore in a past edition of What’s Making Me Happy….
Oh my goodness! You have Jeff Kinney living nearby? Yes… now you mention it, I recall you talking about the bookstore An Unlikely Story – what a great name for a bookshop! Yes – it’s lovely having my sister so close:).
Yup. 🙂 I’ve never met him, but I’m thankful that he and his wife decided to open that bookstore. Not just for the bookstore part, but upstairs they have a fantastic event space that’s used for everything from author signings to exercise and yoga classes. I actually went to a yoga and essential oils workshop there a couple months ago. It’s just an all-around welcoming and beautiful place.
It sounds wonderful, Sara – thank you for telling me about it. I’ll be able to impress Oscar with all these details – not necessarily an easy achievement these days…
Glad you had a great weekend! I haven’t read that Margaret Atwood book! I will check it out!
I do recommend it – and I’d like to know what you think about it…
Glad to see you are enjoying The Lazy Girl’s Guide to Magic series. I have both but still need to read them. Wonderful haul!
I hope you get a chance to read these soon – you’re in for a treat:). Many thanks for swinging by and have a great week.
I look forward to your review of Hagseed. That’s a book that I’ve been fancying for a while.
Yes, it should be appearing in the next couple of weeks…
Oh I am so glad you loved HagSeed! One of my favourites of last year.
Oh yes – one of my favourites this year… Along with Miranda and Caliban! I’ll be posting my review sometime soon.
Thank you so much for the mention!
You’re welcome – it’s a wonderful article and I wanted to spread the pleasure…
Sounds like you had a fun day with Oscar! i hope your edits are going well. Star Witch sounds like a fun read. I know the Dairy of a Wimpy Kid books are popular, but haven’t read any of them myself. Glad to hear it was a good read. I hope you’re having a great week!
It’s turned out to be a good week, thank you Lola:). Both Slouch Witch and Star Witch have turned out to be huge fun – I’ve really enjoyed them. I’m looking forward to spending more time with Oscar and doubtless we will be reading more of Diary of a Wimpy Kid…
Sounds like a week well-spent: working hard and treating yourself to something you love!
Oh yes! It was an excellent week… I could do with another one of those – but I’ve got lots of hard work ahead of me and not much down time.