Sunday Post – 11th March, 2018


This is part of the weekly meme over at the Caffeinated Reviewer, where book bloggers can share the books and blogs they have written.

Thankfully, the weather has now returned to normal temperatures for the time of year. Last Sunday, I was lucky enough to attend a concert at the Worthing Assembly Hall with the Worthing Symphony Orchestra playing Elgar’s Cello Concerto featuring Sheku Kanneh-Mason, winner of the 2017 Young Musician of the Year. It was a marvellous experience and has me fizzing with pleasure every time I think about it. We live in a wonderful age where recorded music is always available to us – but there is nothing that beats a live performance.

It was a busy week as I also had to fit in an extra lesson for Tim to make up for the snow day we lost the previous week, as we are now on the last lap of his two-year programme of work and will be handing in his folder for marking at the end of the Easter holidays.

Himself, my sister and I also had a chance to go and see the Oscar-winning film The Shape of Water which was beautiful and wonderfully acted. However, the pacing was on the leisurely side and the main antagonist was unremittingly horrible to the point that he descended into a pantomime villain caricature which frankly became ludicrous and certainly ruined the last quarter of the film for me. At least we had a lovely meal afterwards at our favourite Chinese restaurant.

I hope everyone celebrating Mothering Sunday today has a lovely time. My daughter drove over with a card and a beautiful bouquet of flowers yesterday and we were able to have a natter over a cuppa and catch up. There is a major gathering of the clan at my youngest sister’s house today in honour of all the mothers gathered there.

And also let’s spare a thought for those who for various tragic reasons dread this day…

This week I have read:

Reclaiming Shilo Snow – Book 2 of The Evaporation of Sofi Snow duology by Mary Weber
Trapped on the ice-planet of Delon, gamer girl Sofi and Ambassador Miguel have discovered that nothing is what it seems, including their friends. On a quest to rescue her brother, Shilo, a boy everyone believes is dead, they must now escape and warn Earth of Delon’s designs on humanity. Except the more they unearth of the planet and Sofi’s past, the more they feel themselves unraveling, as each new revelation has Sofi questioning the very existence of reality. Meanwhile, back on Earth, Sofi’s mom, Inola, is battling a different kind of unraveling: a political one that could cost lives, positions, and a barely-rebuilt society, should they discover the deal made with the Delonese. But there’s a secret deeper than all that. One locked away inside Sofi and ticking away with the beginnings, endings, and answers to everything. Including how to save humanity.
It did take a bit of time to get into this one, as I haven’t read the first book in the series and there was a lot going on. However, when I got my bearings, I really enjoyed the dilemma confronting the protagonists. I’ll be reviewing it in due course.

My posts last week:

Sunday Post – 4th March 2018

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The Magic Chair Murder: a 1920s mystery – Book 1 of The Black and Dods Mysteries by Diane Janes

Teaser Tuesday featuring Reclaiming Shilo Snow – Book 1 of The Evaporation of Sofi Snow duology by Mary Weber

Can’t-Wait Wednesday featuring The Blood by E.S. Thomson

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Into the Thinnest of Air – Book 5 of the Ishmael Jones series by Simon R. Green

Friday Face-off – After every storm the sun will smile… featuring Sundiver – Book 1 of the Uplift novels by David Brin

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The Bitter Twins – Book 2 of The Winnowing Flame trilogy by Jen Williams

Interesting/outstanding blogs and articles that have caught my attention during the last week, in no particular order:

A Short Analysis of Wilfred Owen’s ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ I recall my shock at reading this poem when in school and very much enjoyed this article…

It’s OK to just share the book love. #BookBloggers #bookBlogger #books #blogger I enjoyed this thoughtful article from Drew, an outspoken book blogger and proud of it…

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Quotes from P.G. Wodehouse And this selection reminded me all over again, why Wodehouse is remembered with such affection…

Why I Quit my Dream Job This sobering article rang far too many bells with me – thank goodness I didn’t have to give up teaching. But thank goodness, I’m no longer battling with these issues, either…

My Mother’s Fairy Tales I loved this article and I happen to agree with Jennie – these stories are there as a preparation for children having to face a cruel, unfair world. What do you think?

Have a great week and thank you very much for taking the time and trouble to visit, like and comment on my site.

51 responses »

    • Oh yes! And the lushness of the sound and experiencing the energy and passion the musicians are pouring into that particular performance… I shall be returning! Have a lovely week, Deb:))

  1. PG Wodehouse! I believe Bo’s got a few of his books. Have you ever read Robert Benchley? I need to look at him sometime. He’s Bo’s all-time favorite author, being an essayist of knowledge, wit, and honesty. 🙂

    • No – I haven’t read Robert Benchley, though I have heard of him… The P.G. Wodehouse quotes are a delight, aren’t they? Have a lovely week, Jean:)x

  2. I agree with you. There really is something truly captivating about a live performance, no matter what kind of music it is.

    I haven’t seen The Shape of Water yet. I actually hadn’t even heard of it before the Oscars so I’m sure I’ll check it out once it’s available on DVD since that’s when I usually get around to watching all of the nominees and winners.

    I hope you have a wonderful week!

    • Thank you Suzanne:). Yes… I hadn’t heard of The Shape of Water, either. I’ll be fascinated to hear what you think of it when you get hold of it. Have a great week:)).

  3. I think I was the only person in my neck of the woods not complaining on Facebook about the snow but I have to say, I am now glad it’s gone and the sun is shining again. Have a good Mother’s Day x

    • That just show how restrained you are! I’m sooo relieved that the temperature is much higher and we have daffodils and catkins – yay! I hope you, too, have a lovely Mothers Day. I am hoping to get to our book this week – sorry I didn’t get to it last week:(.

  4. Happy Mothers Day, Sarah😁 I really want to see The Shape of Water since it just won best picture, I think a lot of people were surprised by that.

    • Thank you Tammy:). It was a lovely day. Yes… that’s why I wanted to watch The Shape of Water and now I’ve seen it, I can understand why is was such a suprise that it won. Frankly it didn’t deserve such an accolade – but I’d love to hear your opinion on it. Have a great week, Tammy:)

    • There are some lovely performances, but by the end, I simply wasn’t convinced by the OTT villain – and I like films with a paranormal twist… On the other hand – I’m waiting to see Billboards when it comes out on DVD because that looks awesome. Have a great week, Laurel.

  5. I agree – live performance is so energizing and different than listening to recorded music. Also makes for great experiences and memories. I’ve never listened to an orchestra, but I think I would like it. Happy Mother’s Day! I hope you enjoy celebrating with all the lovely women in your family.

    • Oh it really is… I’ve never heard an orchestra of that quality before – and Elgar’s concerto is my alltime favourite, so it was a real tingle moment hearing it:)). I recommend you put going to a concert on your Bucket List! Thank you for your kind good wishes – we had a lovely day together!

  6. The Symphony sounds wonderful! I wish my husband would go to events like that. My mother and I always went together growing up. I so want to see The Shape of Water. It looks amazing. Enjoy your day with family. Happy Mother’s Day!

    • The concert was, indeed, awesome. Perhaps you could find a friend to go with instead? I have definitely decided I want to attend more of them. I feel ashamed that I have lived in the area ALLL this time without knowing we had such a marvellous orchestra on the doorstep! I hope you, too, have a wonderful day, Jenea:)

  7. The weather is back to more normal for this time of the year here as well. That’s great you got to attend that live performance. That sounds fun how you had a night out with your husband and your sister to see a movie and have dinner at your favorite restaurant. I hope you’ll have a great week!

    • Thank you, Lola – yes, I had a lovely week. I’m glad your weather now more reasonable and I hope it continues to improve. Have a wonderful week, Lola:)

    • Yes, I was a bit fed up, too. But do bear in mind that it has won Best Movie and therefore, I am clearly in the minority:). Thank you for swinging by and have a fabulous week!

  8. Amen to live performances and concerts. I remember thinking the same thing when I was at the Anathema concert last summer. Their studio albums are always incredible to listen to… but when they play live, their songs take on a whole new life. There’s more emotion, more vitality, more… of everything that makes them so good. It’s sort of why I’m so excited to go to the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience this fall. To hear songs from the show played by a live orchestra…. I’m already feeling chills just by thinking about it!

    Glad to hear your weather is back to normal. Winter has decided to make a storm comeback here this month; we’re expecting another snowstorm on Tuesday. The good thing is, I have the ability / technology to work from home, so if it appears it’ll be too bad to travel, I’ll play it safe.

    How are things going with revisions to Miranda’s Tempest? You didn’t mention anything about it in your post…

    • Oh yes – I had forgotten that you are such a music fan and enjoy attending live gigs. Ooo… *envious intake of breath* Game of Thrones live musc experience?? You lucky, lucky writer!! I LOVE that opening music – in fact the quality of the music throughout, along with the general production values and performances is extraordinarily high…

      I hope the storm sweeping in hasn’t dumped too much more snow on top of you! We have a forecast for more bitterly cold weather at the weekend:(. I’m hoping it’s wrong! As for Miranda’s Tempest, it’s still going forward, thank you for asking. I’m very pleased with the way the last two rewritten scenes have turned out and hopefully I’m now on the final lap with just 20,000 words to go. Hopefully…

      • YES. 😀 The thought of hearing the main theme performed by a live orchestra is already sending thrills up and down my spine. I’m also staying away from YouTube bootlegs of last year’s GoT concert tour (I haven’t actively looked for them, but I’m sure they’re out there). I don’t want to spoil the magic of the experience for myself too soon!

        It’s funny that we’re talking about live orchestral music. I’m reading Ursula K. Le Guin’s “No Time to Spare,” and one of her blog posts / essays is about experiencing a live orchestra performance. The composition she focused on is “Become Ocean” by John Luther Adams, and she described in such an incredible way that I had to listen to it for myself. And, well… imagine an orchestral piece that sounds like the way the ocean moves. That’s the only way I know how to describe it, and it’s… just… <3.

        The good news about Tuesday's storm? We didn't lose power. The bad news? We got about 2 feet of snow in my hometown (about 60 centimeters). Yes. I know. And it's not the first time we've gotten this much in one fell swoop; you can expect a snowstorm like this in MA just about every year. Still…

        Good luck with the rest of your Miranda's Tempest rewrite! 🙂

      • Ooo… I need to track that down! The music that encapsulates the sea for me is Benjamin Britten’s Four Sea interludes from Peter Grimes – do look it up – it’s on YouTube – it’s wonderful…

      • I’ll make it easy for you. 😉 Link is posted below. My only suggestion would be to play it when you’ve got a decent span of time to listen to it, since it’s (*gasp*) 42 minutes long. But it’s worth each and every one of those minutes!

      • Thank you:)). Sadly the link won’t work and isn’t available this side of the pond… I hate it when that happens! I am playing a selection of his music that is available, though – many thanks:)).

        I also meant to commiserate with you over your hefty snowfall – and will do so now as once more the temperatures have dropped below freezing and we have a scattering of snow falling just as Spring is struggling to surface and this week I saw bumble bees and butterflies in the garden:(. I can only hope they can cope…

      • Silly YouTube. *pouts* But at least you were able to find some of his music. I should check out more of his compositions in the future, too.

        Funny you mention the bees and butterflies coming back and now enduring the (hopefully?) last gasps of winter. We had such a mild February here in MA that some of the local bird species have come back early from the winter migration. My dad told me the other day that ospreys were sighted on Cape Cod a few weeks earlier than usual – before our recent string of snowstorms happened. We may be getting another one Wednesday or Thursday, btw, though it looks like this one might be too far south to give us more than light rain / snow showers.

        Fingers crossed that we both get to see more signs of spring soon!

      • Yes… I feel a bit of an idiot moaning about the inch or so of snow we have just had – AGAIN. But it isn’t usual and I do worry about the wildlife…

  9. You had a great week again. Pity about the Shape of Water – I have seen it and it was okay. I wouldn’t say I was blown away. I see your point about the OTT villain. Like I said, it was okay and I would probably watch it again now that I know what to expect.
    Lynn 😀

    • Yes – it was okay, wasn’t it? But not amazingly good and certainly not of sufficient quality to win the Oscar… I wouldn’t watch again – the antagonist makes me too cross! But I was very lucky to have such a lovely week, again. That’s why it’s always great to do these roundups – my weeks are so flatout busy at present, they zip by too fast to fully appreciate, until I’m writing the Sunday Post!

  10. I definitely plan on seeing THE SHAPE OF WATER at some point soon. I hate when villains are over the top, unless they’re meant to be like The Joker. 🙂

    • Yes, it’s worth seeing. There is a lot that is lovely in the film and there are some fine performances. I’d love to hear your opinion about the villain…

  11. A great week as always! And I’m glad you had a lovely mother’s day 😀 I’m still unsure whether to see The Shape of Water… I might wait for it to come out on Netflix as I don’t think I could drag my other half to see it anyway!

    • To be honest, while it is beautifully shot, I don’t think you gain all that much more by seeing it on a large screen in the way that affects some films. And I am curious to know what you’d make of it, whether you see it at the cinema or on the small screen:). Thank you for your kind good wishes – it was a lovely Mother’s Day:)

  12. I didn’t know it was Mother’s Day on the other side of the pond until my UK blogging friends started talking about it. It sounds like you had a lovely week all around. Also, please keep posting the interesting posts/links you recommend. I am finding them worthy of looking into and quite interesting. TY

  13. Oooh, what a lovely week it was! And I’m here to remind you of all those events you might have forgotten.
    I agree with you that live music sounds the best, but at the same time, as a person who doesn’t like to go out much (especially into “crowded” places), I still appreciate that I don’t have to go anywhere to be immersed in music.
    I haven’t seen The Shape of Water yet, so thank you for the warning – I’ll trim down my expectations, so that I can enjoy the movie regardless of its shortcomings.

    • Thank you, Joanna:)). You’re right – it’s fabulous being reminded of wonderful weeks like this one! I appreciate you taking me back here. And I’m very interested to hear what you think of The Shape of Water when you get a chance to see it.

      • It’s a delight for me, actually. I really appreciate you taking the time and effort to read through posts I wrote months ago:)

      • I love your posts. This year has been rough when it comes to being on time with things, but I’m still hoping to catch up.
        If not, I’ll be eternally the Ghost of the Blog Posts Past ;).

      • Thank you so much for your kind words regarding the posts – there are times when I wonder whether I should keep going with it…

        Oh – when you’ve caught up, you’ll find all sorts of GAPS in my posting schedule where with all of my gallivanting around, my blog has really suffered… But at least catching up will be a lot less of a challenge:))

      • The good thing about reading “in bulk” is that I really don’t notice the gaps :). Once I’m done reading a post, the next one is already there, waiting. 😉

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