Category Archives: Books Including Susie’s Monthly Friday Book Club

Susie’s Friday Monthly Book Club.

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Hi All, for this month I give you “A Tudor Christmas”, which looks at where all our Christmas traditions come from.  A lot of people think that the Victorians gave us a lot of our Christmas activities and traditions but in fact many of them go back to Tudor times.

Alison Weir is a famous historical author and has written extensively on Henry VIII’s wives and Siobhan Clarke is a lecturer and guide for some of our historic Royal Palaces including Henry VIII’s favourite, Hampton Court. 

The book examines different aspects of Christmas and explains how they came about.  I love books like this, I have always loved history, especially about Christmas my most favourtie time of year.  Eldest bought this book for me last Christmas and I read it during the holidays.

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Sorry for radio silence this week but it has been one of those weeks!  Had a great day on Tuesday with Jayne Christmas shopping although we both said that all the stores seem to be doing a very “low key” Christmas this year with a lot less displays and Christmas gifts!  We usually spend the day looking for those little extra gifts for our families and hardly found anything!  It think it must be a reaction to all this rubbish Brexiet delays and now, of course, the General Election!!!  Just what we all need before Christmas!!!

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Wednesday and Thursday were taken up with work and also helping Youngest sort out where his suitcase was after his trip to Florida!!!  Yes as only with us, his case was not on his flight because of a mix up with the tickets attached to the bag and it was left in Florida.  Eventually it made its way back to Gatwick and then to Heathrow and finally last night to our home at 7.45pm!!!!  We didn’t think he would ever see it again, so at least that was one benefit and it looks to be in one piece!!!

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I managed to get home jobs done yesterday as well and also all my washing and ironing so at least I am up to date for now!!!!  I am hoping that next week will be a little calmer.  The weekend is manic of course and DH is out all day on Sunday as it is Remembrance Sunday here and he is out on Saturday night too at at friend’s daughters 18th Birthday doing the music for her!!! Tonight it is the Small Pool Swimmers their championships but that is usually a quick event and the littlies love it especially when they get their trophies!!!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend whatever you are up to.

Hugs, Susie xx

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Treacle’s had a quiet week, lots of rain so she has been snoozing in her basket!!!!!

Susie’s Monthly Friday Book Club.

Book Club should have been two weeks ago but that was when I was still running Eldest around after his Op!!!  Better late than never as they say!!!!

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If you like Agatha Christie then you will love Jessica Fellowes, who is the niece of Julian Fellowes creator of “Downton Abbey”!  The Mitford Sisters were real and in fact the youngest of the sisters, Debo, married Andrew Cavendish the 11th Duke of Devonshire and resided at Chatsworth House.

This story is woven about the sisters when they were young, in fact Debo has only just been born.  Louisa Cannon escapes London and her terrible Uncle and takes a position as assistant to the Sisters’ Nanny.  However a murder on a train has an impact on the whole family but especially Louisa and the eldest Mitford Sister Nancy (an author in real life).  Nancy persuades Louisa to help her investigate the murder and the connection to their family, whilst Louisa is trying to stay away from London and her violent Uncle. 

So far there are three books in this series, I have book number two and I really enjoyed this one so will be getting the third one.  As I say if you are a fan of Agatha then you will love these books.

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As predicted it has been raining all day today and due to rain all day tomorrow.  I was going to try and get some pictures of our Autumn trees but they just look very wet and very sorry for themselves at the moment.  Sunday is supposed to be a better day so I will try and get some pictures then.

Have a Wonderful Weekend you lovely lot.

Hugs, Susie xx

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Susie’s Friday Book Club September.

Well the months are flying by now and you, like me, are no doubt being bombarded by companies about Christmas!  However one Christmas email I always like to receive is from the various book shops with their Christmas offers, especially for the children we buy for. 

A lot of books were always on my Christmas list, so much so that my parents used to say isn’t there anything different I would like for Christmas but no.  I always read a lot but especially during the Autumn and Winter months when it was dark early.  I still do now!

Anyway onto September’s Book Club entry and it is a book I read whilst away in Scotland.

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This is a new character, Atlee Pine, for David Baldacci and hopefully he will write some more.  She is not your usual FBI Agent preferring to stay away from high profile offices and stationed in the wilds of Western United States.  She is tasked with helping to find a missing person in The Grand Canyon but all they find is a dead trek mule and a million questions which leads to a far reaching conspiracy including her immediate Boss.  Atlee and her personal assistant end up on the run for their lives not being able to trust anyone and the truth leads them right to FBI Headquarters in Washington DC.

As with every one of Mr Baldacci’s other books this keeps you wanting to read just one more page, until late into the night!  Can highly recommend it.

I got a lot of reading done whilst we were away so have quite a few books waiting for their day on the Friday Book Club.

Been hectic today with home jobs, grocery shopping, washing and ironing!!!!  Weekend is busy too with DH out on Saturday evening commentating again and hopefully Sunday will be nice weather and we can get some garden jobs done as well.  I hope you lovely lot have a Great Weekend.

Hugs, Susie xx

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It’s Friday so an Extra Book Day!

Whilst we were away DH did get some customer visits in (!) one of which was to Edinburgh!  Normally I will just tag along and sit outside the customers in the truck and read, however I discovered that whilst the Edinburgh Festival is in full swing there is also the Edinburgh International Book Festival!  Well I just had to go!

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I got there for when it opened but there was already a queue (we love to queue in Britain!!!) However it was still quite empty so I managed to get a look round the large bookshop and get some books.  Then I got a drink and sat down to read!!!

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The centre of the Book Festival in George Street.

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The Book Shop and lots of tables to sit at and read.

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All set for a few hours of reading, yeah!!!!

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I didn’t just read and buy books I did attend two talks, one business based (so I was really doing some work!!!!) which was very interesting about the current business  climate.  The second talk was about the sun and how much good it actually does us.  The speaker had done studies on those countries that don’t get a lot of sun and the effect on people’s health. 

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All along the road were these HUGE books where you could sit for a while and at night they lit up!

I also got lunch and read some more!!!!!  Then it wasn’t long before DH was due back to collect me.  The great thing was that the Festival was open until 11.00pm so I didn’t have to leave until DH got there.

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The other Bookshop on the road which was all Scottish Authors.

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Edinburgh Castle from George Street in the evening.

It was a great day and I have bought some more books to stock up for winter when it is dark and raining outside!!!!  I actually got through three books whilst I was away and have now started a new one, which will appear in my Monthly Friday Book Club and also on my Books I Have Read this year!

It is a long weekend for us here in the UK this weekend, DH and I have a few jobs to get done and the weather, at the moment, is due to be sunny and warm!!!  So the garden beckons and a few jobs at home.  Oh and an eye test for both of us!!!!!!!

Whatever you are up to this weekend I hope you have a lovely time. 

Hugs, Susie xx

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Susie’s Monthly Friday Book Club.

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August 9th National Book Lovers Day!

It is fortuitous that my Monthly Friday Book Club (the second Friday of every month) actually falls on National Book Lovers Day today!  However we are away on vacation and I am busy reading!  So this left me with a dilemma; do I do a book review and then schedule the post for today or leave it as it is a great day for reading, so grab a book and have a few hours off!

You know me though, I love to talk, read and collect books, so I did a review, but of a different kind and decided to list my ten most favourite books, which I have read several times and will still read.  They are not in any particular order so here they are :

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Agatha Christie – one of my Parents’ favourite Authors so I started to read her books when I was eight.  A very traditional sort of writing but still with those twists and turns which make the stories very subtle but engaging.

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You knew I had to include one of Mr Martin’s books and I do think the first in the Game of Thrones series is the best and draws you in and makes you want to read the rest, as fast as possible.  I think I devoured, all of these within a few months (I was a bit late to the party so he had written quite a few by then!).

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This set is from when I was a little girl and I just loved them.  They are by Enid Blyton who wrote lots of children’s books and they are still popular today, although our Government tried to ban them from school reading lists as they are not “politically correct”!!!!!  They are about Darrell Rivers going to Boarding School in England and her adventures going through the school years.  Think Harry Potter without the magic!!!  All my friends were reading the books too and we ALL wanted to go to Boarding School!  I think the reality would not have lived up to the books!!!

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I own all of Stephen Kings novels and it is very hard to choose a favourite, there are several, but I think this one is just a little bit ahead of all the others.  He is the master of the weird but great books in which to disappear into.

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David Baldacci is a great author and all his books are different but engrossing.  I love this book as it is about Christmas and a journey across America for Tom Langdon, Journalist.  For him it is a journey of discovery and reconnecting with himself and people close to him all before Christmas.

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Clive Cussler!  This was the first book I read of his, bought from a charity Book Sale in 1993!  Again I was a little late to the party but it was great to read all the books he had written up to date then! 

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I have all of Wilbur Smith’s books several of which are a series about certain families.  However I chose this one as it was completely different to the others he had written and was set in ancient Egypt.  I have always been very much into Egyptian history so this story ticked all the boxes.  He also went on to write other books in this series.

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No need to really introduce you to this book as most people know the gist of the story, even if you have never read the book.  I think it is Jane Austen’s best book, I have read all her others, but this is by far my favourite and I can read it again and again.  Who doesn’t love the way Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett interact.  I actually read this book for my English Literature Exam and my sixteen year old self just loved the romatic story and we all wanted to be Elizabeth Bennett and meet our very own Mr Darcy!!  Six years later I did when I met DH!

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I first read The Hobbit when I was eleven and loved the journey of reading the book and the journey that Bilbo Baggins took.  I have since read it again and still enjoyed it.  I have also read Lord of the Rings but liked The Hobbit better!  This book is what started me down the fantasy book road and am forever grateful for it, as it opens up a whole new world, compared to normal fiction.

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Finally The Redemption of Althalus!  Another fantasy book, another “brick” sized book but it completely seizes you from the first chapter until the final one.  It has a rogue, Althalus, a Goddess Dweia and a talking cat and begins with Althalus trying to steal a magical book from a House at the end of the World!  This was the first book of Eddings that I read and then I got to go back and read all of his others!!!

I hope you have enjoyed this little trip through my ten favourite books.  However because of all the books we have I could have several of these favourite ten!!!!!

I hope you have a lovely Summer and have some time to spend reading.

Hugs, Bookworm Susie!!!! xx

Happy Summer Reading Everyone!

Susie’s Friday Book Club.

As you know from last month’s Book Club I am currently reading the new George R.R. Martin Book “Fire and Blood” which is the prequal to Game of Thrones.  If you have actually seen the book in person it is the size of a brick and I have not got very far with it at the moment and will be taking it away with me on vacation.

So this month’s Book Club is a little different and I thought I would show you a very favourite cook book of mine, Nigella Lawson’s “At My Table”.  I have all of Nigella’s books and use lots of recipes from them day to day and for dinner parties. 

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I think because she is not a chef but a good home cook as she calls herself, her recipes work and they also work if you change an ingredient, which I have found in the past with other chef’s books this doesn’t happen.

I think I have also said about Nigella’s books before that you can actually read her books as she has a very easy way of writing and puts little anecdotes in when telling you about the recipe.

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This is one of my favourite recipes from the book Chicken Fricassée.  You can use left over chicken or turkey or cook it from scratch, so very versatile, DH and The Boys love it.  It is also a good recipe for cooking ahead and re-heating.

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Here is my copy!

You can get it from Amazon as a hard back or Kindle edition.  It was first published in 2017 so is one of her relatively new books.  I hope you try this or one of her other books as she really does have some different but delicious recipes.

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Yesterday was the worst day, weather wise, I have lived through!  The heat was unbearable and despite all our curtains and blinds being closed tight and windows open, the heat just got in.  I stopped Treacle going outside as she was just lying in the sun panting even with her short hair so I closed the back door as well.  I actually hung my washing out and it was dry in an hour!!!  Our bedroom is at the back of our property which gets the sun from 10.00am until 7.00pm so last night our room was like an oven.  We really didn’t sleep much.  We kept all the doors open trying to catch any breeze but nothing.  I was awake at 4.00am and it was a little cooler but not much!

Today it is 76°F but still very warm and muggy!  We are supposed to get heavy rain over night and all day tomorrow and Sunday which will hopefully cool it down a bit.  However Sunday I was going to do a BBQ for us all but I think I will be cooking in doors now, hey ho!

Whatever you are all up to this weekend I hope you lovely lot have a good time, whatever the weather is doing!

Hugs, Susie xx

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Susie’s Monthly Friday Book Club.

Sorry this post is a few days late but Friday last turned into a bit of chaos and ended with me having afternoon tea with my good friend Jayne whose Birthday was last week.  We usually try and go out for lunch to celebrate our Birthdays (a week apart) but she and I are too busy, so we are going to try and go next month.

 

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Anyway on to this month’s book – George R R Martin’s prequel to his amazing Game of Thrones series “Fire and Blood” about Daennerys’ ancestors The Targaryens.  It is set 300 years before Game of Thrones and begins with Aegon The Conqueror who fashioned the Iron Throne.  It follows the family and shows how we got to Game of Thrones through 736 pages!  As you can imagine it is a long book and I have it in hard back so it will take me a while to get through this but am really looking forward to it as I think Martin is a great story teller, even if he does kill your favourite characters off!!!!!!

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There are some lovely illustrations in the book.

I will let you know how I get on with it.  My only problem with the book will be that it is so big I will have a job reading it when I am in the bath!!!!!!!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend a looking forward to a good week.

Hugs, Susie xx