Sunday Post – 26th July, 2020 #Brainfluffbookblog #SundayPost


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

It’s been a sociable week. On Wednesday evening, my writing group was able to meet in Debbie’s garden and I read parts of Picky Eaters Part 2. It was great meeting up in real life again, though we noticed how much earlier the nights are drawing in, already. On Thursday I visited my friend, Sally and saw Tim for the first time since the lockdown – to discover he’s grown a beard! And it really suits him😊. We were celebrating the fact she has now received the proof copy of her book Miracle in Slow Motion, which looks absolutely fantastic. It was lovely catching up with her – it’s been so long since we had a chance to talk face to face.

On Friday, I drove up to see my daughter and the children – after lunch, we visited Washbrook Farm, where they keep animals for children to see and an amazing swing park. It was a beautiful day, warm and sunny, ideal for such a visit. The great thing about this place is that we could walk there. Eliza took all the animals in her stride – but was far more excited about the small tractor and rushed across, wanting to clamber aboard. All the children then spent time at one of the biggest swing parks I’ve ever seen. I was impressed at how much steadier she is on her feet and how adventurous she is. We had the loveliest time.

This weekend is a bit tense in the garden, as the young gulls nesting next door are fledging. The trouble is, if they land in our garden, they are trapped as they cannot take off again and we need to gently herd them through the sidegate and out to the front where they are able to fly. Himself is a dab hand at this, even freeing one that got tangled in the hedge early on Saturday morning. Meanwhile the adults are wheeling overhead, calling frantically. But they never try to attack us while we are helping – they seem to know we mean them no harm.

The pics this week are featuring the different types of yellow-coloured foliage I have in the garden, including my choisia, spotted laurel, golden-leaved ivy and my Amber Wave heuchera.

Last week I read:
Chaos Vector – Book 2 of The Protectorate by Megan E O’Keefe
Sanda and Tomas are fleeing for their lives after letting the most dangerous smartship in the universe run free. Now, unsure of who to trust, Sanda knows only one thing for certain — to be able to save herself from becoming a pawn of greater powers, she needs to discover the secret of the coordinates hidden in her skull.
This is the second book in this foot to the floor epic space opera adventure. Review to follow.

AUDIOBOOK Deep Roots – Book 2 of The Innsmouth Legacy by Ruthanna Emrys
Aphra Marsh, descendant of the People of the Water, has survived Deep One internment camps and made a grudging peace with the government that destroyed her home and exterminated her people on land. Deep Roots continues Aphra’s journey to rebuild her life and family on land, as she tracks down long-lost relatives. She must repopulate Innsmouth or risk seeing it torn down by greedy developers, but as she searches she discovers that people have been going missing. She will have to unravel the mystery, or risk seeing her way of life slip away.
I was thrilled to discover this sequel to one of my favourite reads in 2017 – Winter Tide. My excitement was well-founded – I absolutely loved this one, and the narration was spot on. Review to follow.

Seven Devils – Book 1 of the Seven Devils series by Laura Lam and Elizabeth May
When Eris faked her death, she thought she had left her old life as the heir to the galaxy’s most ruthless empire behind. But her recruitment by the Novantaen Resistance, an organization opposed to the empire’s voracious expansion, throws her right back into the fray.

Eris has been assigned a new mission: to infiltrate a spaceship ferrying deadly cargo and return the intelligence gathered to the Resistance. But her partner for the mission, mechanic and hotshot pilot Cloelia, bears an old grudge against Eris, making an already difficult infiltration even more complicated. When they find the ship, they discover more than they bargained for: three fugitives with firsthand knowledge of the corrupt empire’s inner workings.
This action-packed space opera adventure is great fun – and that climactic ending… oh my word! Review to follow.

My posts last week:

Castellan the Black and His Wise Draconic Musings

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Oranges and Lemons – Book 17 of the Bryant and May: Peculiar Crimes Unit series by Christopher Fowler

Friday Face-off featuring The Many-Colored Land – Book 1 of the Pliocene Saga by Julian May

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The Sin Eater by Megan Campisi

Can’t-Wait-Wednesday featuring Inconquerable Sun – Book 1 of The Sun Chronicles by Kate Elliott

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of Peace Talks – Book 16 of the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher

Tuesday Treasures – 5

Review of AUDIOBOOK The Mirror and the Light – Book 3 of the Thomas Cromwell series by Hilary Mantel

Castellan the Black and His Wise Draconic Musings

Sunday Post – 26th July 2020

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

Short story: SINEW AND STEEL AND WHAT THEY TOLD, by Carrie Vaughn This is an amazing short story by a fabulous SFF author, whose writing I love – see my review of The Wild Dead…

Thursday Doors – Castle Saunderson Again Jean’s photo-tours of tucked-away doors around Ireland is always a treat – and this one is no exception…

Blogging Kindness Diana confirms what I’ve already known – the book blogging community is filled with lots of thoughtful, kindly folks. It bears repeating, though – given that some parts of social media are so very angry…

Writers, Pay Yourself First While this article is aimed at writers, it occurred to me while reading it that a lot of folks I know – particularly women – would benefit from this advice…

Love-Fi Feast your eyes on these amazing abstract designs…

Thank you for visiting, reading, liking and/or commenting on my blog – I hope you and yours have a peaceful, healthy week. Take care.

53 responses »

    • Thank you, Becky:). It will only be a problem for the next couple of days – it doesn’t take the youngsters long to get the hang of things, fortunately. I hope you have a good week, too:))

  1. Seven Devils and Chaos Vector are both coming up for me soonish, glad you enjoyed them! Your garden is so pretty as always, and I envy all your social interactions😁 Have a nice week, Sarah😁

    • Yes, one more than the other – but I’ll speak about that more in my reviews:)). Frankly, the garden is looking appallingly neglected, but these plants just look after themselves, fortunately:)

      Yes, it’s lovely to be able to slowly get to see folks face to face, again, although socially distanced, still. I hope you, too, have a lovely week, Tammy:))

  2. I am curious about Deep Roots, and feel drawn to anything that focuses on the horrendous things done by governments. I think we can relate these days!

    Your visits with friends sound lovely. Enjoy more of the same. I liked your comment about eating too many salt and vinegar crisps. Yum!

    For me, it was ordering too many things on Amazon: clothes and books!

    Enjoy your week.

  3. It sounds like a wonderful week Sarah. It is so nice to be able spend time with family and friends, even if it is socially distanced. I love how you and Himself are helping the gulls and the parents are letting you. So caring of you both. Throw in some writing and reading and it sounds fabulous.

    • Thank you, Carla:). I’m not sure about caring… I’m aware the gulls are being displaced from their natural environment (the shoreline) and as our waters are fished out, they are also reduced to scavenging. But they are amazing birds – dedicated parents with strong family ties, so I’ll put up with a bit of mess on the car (okay – a lot of mess) and the noise, and we’ll help the youngsters if we can. It’s a bonus they don’t divebomb us…

      Thank you for your kind good wishes and I hope you, too, have a great week full of lovely reads!

  4. Hi Sarah! You had quite the social week yes! It’s lovely to have a sense of normal. Yes, everybody is still very cautious and a few are a bit jittery, but mostly life does go on.

    Hope your upcoming week will be really good with a couple of unexpected blessings.

    • Yes – we’re nowhere near normal. Still wearing masks and social distancing when shopping. Many shops only allow 2 or 3 customers in at a time, so lots of queues and patience. And I couldn’t hug Tim or Sally, which would be my normal greeting! But I’m just so happy that I can get to see them again… I hope that you, too, have a lovely week, Mareli:)

  5. You had a splendiferous time! I had a good week too, but not as much human contact as did you. I am thinking currently that we need to shut Texas down again…way too many COVID cases and deaths!

    • Thank you, Yvonne – yes, I was delighted with last week’s books and I’m currently in the middle of one of the best books I’ve read so far this year:)). I hope you, too, have a wonderful reading week!

  6. So nice that you were able to get out and join your writing friends to talk about your work. I am certain that would be therapeutic for me. I don’t have a writing group, but I was just in the process of forming one when all this happened. Gosh, a garden is the most fantastic place to meet. Yours is so lovely, with all those colors and textures.

    And seeing family? That’s the best, isn’t it? I read this week that little children are like little Zen masters, and I think that’s true.

    You read some wonderful stories this week, too. A really good week for you, I think.

    • It has been a good week, Deb:)). Perhaps your writing group could meet over Zoom? That’s what we do when the weather isn’t good enough to meet up in someone’s garden, as we still aren’t allowed to have gatherings of more than 6 people indoors from more than 2 households.

      And yes! I’ve read some lovely, well written escapist stories, which is just what I need right now:)) Have a peaceful week – I hope the new storm misses you!

    • It certainly was, Sophie:). Though I have been visiting my daughter for a while now, as she is part of our extended family cluster – which means the children can come and stay over.

  7. Thanks again for sharing the link to my kindness post, Sarah. And what a week you had. How fun to be visiting a little. And your gull rescues in the garden were so sweet. I hope the babies are getting into the air soon. Thanks for the book recommendations. 🙂 ❤

    • You’re very welcome, Diana – I thought it was a lovely article:).

      The fledglings are BIG – and we don’t go picking them up, or anything. Though on Saturday Himself did have to lift one out of the hedge. Adults have been known to divebomb people…

      Yes, I am taking it very gently regarding visiting, although our infection rates are still steadily falling. I hope you, too, have a lovely week.

    • We are taking it quite slowly, going out and about. Neither of us are tempted to go to the pub, or out for a meal – or even to a cafe for a cup of tea, for example. But going to visit friends while observing social distancing – oh yes!

  8. Glad to hear you had a lovely, sociable week and still got lots of exciting reading in to. Your garden looks lovely and how sweet that your husband is a dab-hand at rescuing baby gulls. 😊 Take care and happy reading! 😃

    • Oh dear – I think I’ve given the wrong impression regarding the gulls… We generally don’t pick them up – they are way too big and aggressive, but we do herd them out of the garden so they can then take off again. I hope you have a good week, Anne:).

  9. Sounds like a lovely week of visiting, and that’s so nice about the gulls too. that’s great that you’re able to help them when they get in a bit of a pickle! 🙂 Your books sound amazing this week as well. Hope you are well and take care this week!

    • Thank you, Greg. Yes, we are all keeping well and the young gulls seem to have sorted themselves out, now – so we can relax for another year:)). Have a great week!

  10. AWWWW… Those poor baby gulls falling down… But luckily for them, their saviors are always alert! 🙂
    Book-wise, I finished Chaos Vector a few days ago and it literally swept me off my feet. Looking forward to your review and… thanks for the shoutout!

    • Yes, it looks like the young gulls have now sorted themselves out – we can now relax!

      Glad you enjoyed Chaos Vector. It was a pleasure linking to the story – it’s worth reading.

  11. Must be so nice to see your friends in the flesh! I miss seeing all my buddies face to face. It’s been soooooo long now. Sigh.

    • I’m so very sorry. I know at present things seem to be getting easier here, though I’m not taking anything for granted… But I feel so horrible at how it’s impacting other folks:(. I hope that you get an opportunity to see your friends sometime soon, too, SJ…

  12. Because my job puts me in high exposure with lots of people, I’ve not been to see family or friends. We are an older bunch and I don’t want to take any chances of exposing them. Your visits sound wonderful. And even though they might be pesky, helping those young gulls sounds fun:)

  13. Sounds like you had a lovely sociable week – I’ve been catching up with family too and it’s put everything else on the backburner (which is why I’m only just blog hopping and trying to cath up).
    Well done with your fledgling rescue operation 😀

    • I’m so glad you have also been able to catch up with family, too. It’s been quite emotional spending time with them, hasn’t it?

      And yes – as it happens, this year it wasn’t such an issue. We only had one youngster who got trapped, but we were on alert throughout the weekend. And now they have got the hang of it, they should be okay:))

  14. That’s nice you had some visit in real life! Your farm visit and writing group meeting sound like they were fun. That sounds difficult with the gulls getting trapped in your garden, that’s great your husband is good at making sure they can leave again if they get stuck. Glad to hear you had some great reads. Seven Devils sounds great and I have that one on my wishlist.

    • I thoroughly enjoyed Seven Devils and will be reviewing it in due course. And the real life visits were lovely. Thank goodness the young gulls now seem to have sorted themselves out – it doesn’t take long:)).

      Have a lovely week, Lola – I hope you sort out your internet issues very soon.

  15. Hee hee! For some littles, the machines are much more fascinating than the critters. The twins were the same way when I took them to the zoo for the first time–who needs lions, llamas, or lemurs when there’s a little train that goes in a circle? 🙂 Actually, I just took all three of them to the zoo a few days ago. Half of the zoo was still shut down due to the pandemic, but it’s a free zoo, so that was no skin off m’nose. The real bugger, though, was that we came too early–a bunch of animals weren’t even out yet! All because *I* wanted a parking space near the zoo and not, you know, five blocks away.

    Yes, I’m already a crochety Midwesterner who insists on good parking! I think I got it from my dad, who would get to a movie an hour before it starts just to get a good seat. Those were the days, lol. xxxxxxx

    • Yes – we thought it hilarious. Though poor little Eliza was distraught for a while…

      I’m with you! Because when you have lively small people who think nothing of taking off across a car park – you don’t want it heaving with other folks in their cars, focused on getting the last space… And going to the cinema seems like a distant dream – I feel your pain!

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