Saturday, February 25, 2012

So I bought an eReader ...

This one, to be precise. It’s a Sony. And … that’s all I know about it really.

It’s awesome but it took forever to set up. It had two free ebooks on it – Around the World in 80 Days and The Jungle Book. I bought Bleak House and I’m a few chapters in – mostly reading in the car and waiting at the bus stop after work.

I bought Bleak House on a rather obscure impulse – I had always thought I didn’t like Dickens after not liking Great Expectations at uni, or The Old Curiosity Shoppe when I tried to read that a few years ago.

Bleak House, however, is fascinating and I’m riveted. I have no idea what’s going on, but I don’t even care.

I’ve promised myself to at least try and finish one ebook before buying the next one, and Bleak House is big enough that it’s going to be a while.

Plus, I’m saving my hard-earned for Sherlock – season two and both soundtracks, all of which will be available on amazon UK on Feb 27 (er, Tuesday my time). I’m just waiting for the season 2 soundtrack so I can get them all together.

Yes, I do have “I believe in Sherlock Holmes” and “I’m fighting John Watson’s war” t-shirts, why do you ask? :D

Speaking of reading, I’m ¾ of the way through 11.22.63 by Stephen King. I’m hoping to get it finished fairly early this week so I can dive in to my pile of library books.

It’s good; I’m liking it but I wish it had been edited a little more tightly. It’s a bit on the rambly side (yes, I know, it’s Stephen King but there’s rambly and then there’s WILL YOU GET ON WITH IT).

I’m still picking away (slowly) at my cross stitch rotation – at the moment I’m working on Patrick’s train and next up in the round is Circe. I’ve had a couple of weeks from the  Planet Pants but I’m hoping this one will be better.

I have tomorrow off, and I’m going to a friend’s place to watch the Oscars. We shall eat, stitch and pick at people’s outfits.

I’m looking forward to it. :-)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

My fails ...


At the moment there’s just one fail, but I feel awful about it. I’ve basically bailed on the 1Q84 readalong with Care.

I tried. I mean, I only got to page 150 in the book but I kind of felt like I was reading in Groundhog Day every time I picked it up and now I’ve quietly shelved it. I feel  pretty awful about it, I hate bailing on readalongs because they’re fun and involving and engaging and Care is awesome.


Anyway, now I’m reading 11-22-63 by Stephen King and – not surprisingly I guess – that’s going much better.

I’m trying to think what else I’ve been doing lately that’s not failing to read … hrm. Work, obviously. Last week was The Week from Pants but that’s all we’ll say about that.

Oh! I’m thinking of getting an eReader. I’ve been wittering on it for ages but I was thinking today that it might be …. Nice. I mean, in the same way having an iPod is nice, if that makes sense. Something I can cart around with me and read on the bus and in the car and things.

So I’m considering getting a Sony. What I really want is a red one but I don’t seem to be able to get one here.

I also went on a school visit last Friday – to my old primary school, actually; for Patrick. He’ll be five in May and no matter how deeply in denial I am and how much I procrastinate, he’s still going to start school this year.

I had one other visit a couple of weeks ago but I like the feel of this one much better, and not just because it’s where I went to school when the dinosaurs roamed. It’s small – the roll is about 90 kids – and it’s relatively close to my work; about a 10 minute walk, which is also a selling-point. Plus I liked the feel of the place. So once I have the enrolment details sorted out, Patrick will start having school visits.

Please excuse me while I go and breathe into a paper  bag in the corner – lol.

What else, what else while I’m word-vomiting … oh!

Hairy Maclary! The stitching project. I gave up on it because I really hated the fabric and the way the pattern was laid out. My friend was so horrified that she’s finishing it for me – and getting through it a lot faster than I’d be able to.

So now I’m stitching Patrick this steam train (to your left) 

I’m a little further on than that, but haven’t taken a pic for a while. Plus I’m using Anchor rather than DMC  and so I don’t have all the cottons I need for it yet.

I’m also working on a picture for a present for a friend, so my rotation has temporarily expanded to five projects rather  than three, but it doesn’t feel like it’s out of hand or too much.

Uhm … also ALL OF THE PROGRAMMES on TV came back at once. I have A LOT of watching to do - lol

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Short reviews

I’ve finished three books in relatively quick(ish) succession – for me, at least so I’ve decided to do a bit of a review-dump and kind of lump them all together.

Partly also I’m not entirely sure how  I feel about The Magicians by Lev Grossman and don’t really know what to say about it, so I sort of waited till I’d read a couple more books so I could go “hey, short reviews” and coward out that way – lol.

The Magicians by Lev Grossman
This is magic, but not as we know it. Quentin accidentally stumbles across a magic school in the middle of Manhattan, and finds out he has a real gift for it.

Seventeen and already somewhat disaffected, Quentin falls easily into the world of Brakebills.

I have many and varied feelings about The Magicians. I’m just not sure what they are. The obvious comparison, of course, is Harry Potter,  but there’s little resemblance between the world J K Rowling created and Quentin’s world at Brakebills and beyond, where he finds just how difficult it really is living in the real world while keeping most of your life secret.

There’s a quest, of sorts, that goes rather badly, after Quentin discovers that Fillory – the world of a favourite series of children’s books – is real.

Then things really go to hell in a handbasket.

The Magicians is, I don’t even know. It’s certainly not sunny and optimistic. It’s rather grim for the most part and honestly Quentin is kind of unpleasant and self-absorbed but I couldn’t stop reading.

So. I liked reading it. I just kind of felt like I’d set my fingernails on fire.

From one cheerful little read to another …

Burial by Neil Cross

Oh, Neil Cross. You made Luther and therefore I love you because Luther is awesome. And then you write these awesomely chilling novels that are designed to do nothing so much as make the reader go what the – and then check and make sure ALL THE DOORS ARE LOCKED.

A young girl dies at a party. The two men who were present at the time, agree to hide the body and cover up the crime. And swear NEVER TO SPEAK OF IT AGAIN.

Which, you know, never goes well.

When Bob, one of the men turns up on the doorstep of the other, Nathan, things start to spiral downhill rather fast.

Burial is just the right amount of creepy – enough to keep you reading and to double-check your doorlocks. Maybe sleep with a teddy bear but that’s between you and Mr Snuggles, I don’t judge.

Persuasion by Jane Austen

To me, you are perfect. And I will love you forever, Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth.

(Okay, that’s not really a review, it’s a paraphrased quote from Love Actually. LOOK, KITTENS!)