Sunday Post – 6th December, 2020 #Brainfluffbookblog #SundayPost

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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 another really busy week. I was able to attend my first session of Fitstep in over a month and I’m hoping to start back at Pilates, now that our second lockdown has eased and we are designated as a Tier 2 risk. It’s not the same as we have to dance within separate squares and be socially distanced, but flinging myself around to music again was a real treat. This week was dominated by Tim’s annual review and getting the paperwork up together for that, as well as conducting a conference call instead of the usual meeting. And yesterday was my mother’s birthday. We sent her a bouquet of flowers and a card and spoke to her on Skype. She looks marvellous, which is a comfort, but it’s not the same as seeing her…

The photos this week come from a walk along the beach with Himself on the last day of his holiday, before he returned to work on Wednesday. Just look at the millpond smoothness of the water…

Last week I read:

AUDIOBOOK Machine – Book 2 of the White Space series by Elizabeth Bear
Meet Doctor Jens. She hasn’t had a decent cup of coffee in fifteen years. Her workday begins when she jumps out of perfectly good space ships and continues with developing treatments for sick alien species she’s never seen before. She loves her life. Even without the coffee.

But Dr. Jens is about to discover an astonishing mystery: two ships, one ancient and one new, locked in a deadly embrace. The crew is suffering from an unknown ailment and the shipmind is trapped in an inadequate body, much of her memory pared away. Unfortunately, Dr. Jens can’t resist a mystery and she begins doing some digging. She has no idea that she’s about to discover horrifying and life-changing truths.
I thoroughly enjoyed accompanying Dr Jens as she tried to uncover exactly what was going on. Mystery thrillers set in space are always enjoyable – and though Jens does spend quite a lot of time musing about Life, the Universe and Everything – it was only in the later stages of the mystery that I wanted the pace to pick up. Review to follow.


Forged – Book 11 of the Alex Verus series by Benedict Jacka
To protect his friends, Mage Alex Verus has had to change–and embrace his dark side. But the life mage Anne has changed too, and made a bond with a dangerous power. She’s going after everyone she’s got a grudge against–and it’s a long list.
The penultimate book in this series, it certainly has a sense of cranking up the stakes as high as they could possibly go. I like the fact that despite there being a lot of battle scenes – Verus still very much minds about the fact that he is causing the deaths of a lot of people. Review to follow.

Swordheart by T. Kingfisher
Halla is a housekeeper who has suddenly inherited her great-uncle’s estate… and, unfortunately, his relatives. Sarkis is an immortal swordsman trapped in a prison of enchanted steel. When Halla draws the sword that imprisons him, Sarkis finds himself attempting to defend his new wielder against everything from bandits and roving inquisitors to her own in-laws… and the sword itself may prove to be the greatest threat of all.
This was such fun! I have previously read A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking, which I’d loved and when I saw Himself had added this one to our TBR, I was delighted. I shall be reading more of this author in the coming year…

My posts last week:
Castellan the Black and His Wise Draconic Sayings

Review of Girls of Paper and Fire – Book 1 of the Girls of Paper and Fire series by Natasha Ngan

November 2020 Roundup – Reading, Writing and Blogging…

Friday Face-off featuring The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

Review of Fallen – Book 10 of the Alex Verus series by Benedict Jacka

Covet the Covers 13 – Elizabeth Bear

Can’t-Wait Wednesday featuring Forged – Book 11 of the Alex Verus series by Benedict Jacka

Tuesday Treasures – 20

*NEW RELEASE SPECIAL* Review of The Dark Archive – Book 7 of The Invisible Library series by Genevieve Cogman

12 Science Fiction Reads I’m Looking Forward to in 2021

Sunday Post – 29th November 2020

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

December Countdown: One prompt per day https://lynns-books.com/2020/11/29/december-meme-one-prompt-per-day/ This looks like a lot of fun! I may well join in from time to time… Why don’t you think up appropriate books, too?

Christmas Gift Ideas for Book Lovers/Blogmas https://comfortreadsbookblog.wordpress.com/2020/12/03/christmas-gift-ideas-for-booklovers/ Of course book lovers love books – but sometimes you want to give those readers in your life something else…

The Ukrainian Muse and the Paradox of Life https://dalocollis.com/2018/03/29/the-ukrainian-muse-and-the-paradox-of-life/ Occasionally you stumble over an extraordinary blog – and then you just have to share it… Thank you Diane for pointing me towards this!

Thursday Doors – Follow the Wall https://jeanreinhardt.wordpress.com/2020/12/03/thursday-doors-follow-the-wall/ Jean takes us on a walk alongside a wall built a long time ago for quite a different purpose…

George Ezra’s ‘Shotgun’ Sung by 109 Movies and TV Shows https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xX0TDSQkf54&feature=youtu.be Tim has been busy again – mixing up another song using clips from films and TV programmes – he really has some amazing skills…

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

45 responses »

  1. Those photos are lovely, and the sea in the background almost looks surreal! Looks like you had a very good reading week, I’m looking forward to your reviews😁

    • Thank you, Tammy:)) Yes – it isn’t all that often we have the sea that flat at this time of year. Yes, I enjoyed this week’s reads. I now just need to sort out Christmas!

  2. That’s good news your second lock down is over and hopefully you can go back to your pilates soon. That’s nice you got to do a session of fitstep again this week. Looks like you had a nice visit to the beach. And that’s good to hear your mother looks good even tough it’s sad you can’t visit her at the moment, that’s nice you had a skype chat and send some flowers to her at least. Have a great week!

    • Thank you Lola – yes, although I grizzled a bit about it – it is such a boon having Skype so that Mum and I can safely chat and catch up. That’s the problem with my daughter – where she lives the internet connection is so dreadful, we can phone but cannot connect up visually… Annoying! And yes – fingers crossed our infection rate stays down so that we don’t go into Tier 3, which is effectively lockdown by another name… I hope you, too, have a great week:))

  3. Sounds like you had a busy yet enjoyable week Sarah. Too bad you had to do a virtual visit with your mom, it is not the same, but better than not seeing her at all. I enjoyed visiting your highlighted links. I did not know the song that Tim did, so first I listened to the original, which had me bopping in my chair and singing along, then visited Tim’s version. So much fun. Have a great week.

    • Oh Carla – thank you so much for taking the time to visit Tim’s site and listen through to the original – which is very catchy, isn’t it? He does amaze me with what he’s able to do… And I hope you have a peaceful, enjoyable week:))

  4. I added the series by Elizabeth Bear to my TBR 🙂 Thanks for sharing the photos, I long to see the sea again… I’m glad you are able to get back to more “normal” life, even if you couldn’t meet your mother for real yet. Have a great week and enjoy your moderate freedom ^^

    • Thank you, Izabel – and many apologies for the belated response, but we got properly caught out when the family’s Christmas plans changed. I hope you had a great Christmas and a very Happy New Year to you! And I hope you get a chance to read the Elizabeth Bear series at some stage in the coming year…

  5. Beautiful pictures. Thank your for sharing them with us. Here in Germany we will have to face even stricter rules after it has become visible that the partly lockdown isn´t showing the results our government had hoped for. Enjoy your days and I hope that the UK will be out of the woods now! Happy reading, happy writing and stay safe and well.

    • Thank you, Vi. I’m not sure we are out of the woods, but the Tier system we’re working with is probably a better one than a blanket lockdown across the country, seeing as some areas are far more badly affected than others. So sorry to hear that you are facing yet more restrictions:(.

      I hope despite all of that – you get a chance to at least be allowed to go for walks – weather permitting. Have a lovely reading week and stay safe, too!

    • You’re welcome Laurel – I always enjoy popping in and catching up with you on Sundays:)). Thank you for the compliment about the scarf – and I’m in the middle of reading a cracking historical mystery. I hope you have a great reading week:)

  6. Thank you, and it is great to be able to connect ~ especially with this interrupted year we’ve had. Hopefully all gets back to normal, and especially getting out to the special places such as the ones you’ve photographed. Wishing you a great holiday season ~ take care.

    • Thank you, Dalo. I’m very lucky as the beach is only 10 minutes from our house, so this is our regular walk – though we don’t go often enough! I hope you, too, have a festive time, despite all that’s going on…

  7. I enjoy the photos. You had a productive week. Maybe now you can relax and enjoy some reading. It’s great that your lockdown is easing. Even when it does here we just don’t go out unless we need something. Have a lovely week, Sarah!

    • Thank you, Anne:). I don’t go out all that much – Himself does the shopping as he has to go out to work. So it is great to be able to join my fitness classes again… I hope you, too, have a great week.

  8. That’s great that you could attend your Pilate lesson! Here our fitness clubs are still closed because of lockdown. And I know, seeing our family with a camera is not the same….

    • Yes, my Pilates and Fitstep sessions have only just reopened after our second lockdown. So I’m very excited at the prospect of taking part again! And yes… seeing Mum via Skype on her birthday wasn’t the same – but it’s better than not seeing her at all. I hope you have a great reading week, Sophie:).

  9. SJ, sounds like another busy, but lovely week! I am rather jealous you have been able to return to your Fitsteps lessons, as I am really missing my own dance class and all the lovely ladies in the class. And thank you – I hope you and yours have a peaceful, healthy upcoming week, too! 🙂

  10. Nice pictures. I’m glad you were able to have a virtual visit with your mother. We can all hope for real visits in the near future.

    The Fitstep session sounds good. I’ve been walking as my exercise. I try to do it daily but the weather doesn’t always cooperate.

    Hope you have a great week!

    • Thank you, Yvonne. The theory is that I exercise a GREAT DEAL more than I actually do. It’s a disgrace really – we have the sea literally 10 minutes away by car and I love walking by it. And don’t do it nearly often enough! So I’m very impressed at your daily walk – though fully agree with the weather. Why would you go out if it’s too wet/hot/freezing/windy?

      Like you, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the whole situation will change such that we can get together for real sometime in the coming year. In the meantime, I hope you, too, have a lovely week:)

    • Oh, thank you! It wasn’t freezing cold, but it wasn’t all that warm, either. Though I’m a wuss about the cold – so I tend to wear gloves and scarves as a matter of course during the winter! Thank you for your kind compliment – my daughter bought it for me to go with my coat:)). Have a great week!

  11. We would sometimes do pilates-ish activities at yoga. I miss my group classes. Despite my resolve to do yoga at home, I think I’ve managed to actually roll out my mat twice in two weeks.

    Now is your walk along the beach a walk along the ocean? If so, that is very calm.

    I like the idea of a December Countdown. I think I’ll look into that.

    And who doesn’t love bookish lists for Christmas? I’ll take a look at that, too.

    • Oh, I know all about the blinking mat – I’ve got one for Pilates AND all the exercises secured on a fridge magnet. I’ve used it FOUR TIMES since lockdown in March…

      Yes, it was a walk along the beach and that is the sea in the background – looking eerily calm for the time of year!

      Glad you find the links helpful, Deb and I hope you have a great week:))

    • Thank you, Shelleyrae, for your kind compliment about the scarf – my daughter bought it for me:)). Yes – it’s great that Mum is keeping so well and I hope that you, too, have a lovely reading week.

  12. It’s so hard not being able to see family. And love that misty sea view. There’s something about the ocean when it’s foggy like that. 🙂

    Wow Cogman’s series in on book seven already??

    • Oh it is hard not to be able to see the family! Actually, it wasn’t that foggy – it’s just that it was a rather cloudy day and the sea was so smooth, it sort of melted into the sky… I’m going to be posting more pics on Tuesday.

      And yes – book 7, already! It’s always a shock when a series just goes on growing the minute you take your eyes off it!

  13. I just realized that Swordheart and Swordpoint and two different books, I read the latter a few years ago and only rated it 2 stars and apparently erased it from memory. This means I can read Swordheart! I keep meaning to try some T. Kingfisher.

    • Oh, if I highly recommend you get hold of Swordheart – and I would be surprised if you give this one two stars:)). I’m definitely going to reading more Kingfisher in 2021 – she’s one of my discovery authors of the year…

  14. So glad you’re getting back to the fun fitness things! That’s always a relief when you can have some of the things back you missed. Looks like it was a blustery day for a walk! Hope you enjoyed it!

    • Yes – it was lovely while it lasted. But on Boxing Day we went into Tier 4, which is essentially back into Lockdown, as we have this highly transmissible strain of COVID ripping through our area right now… A very Happy New Year to you and yours and I hope you had a good Christmas.

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