Alberta’s TBR pile – tottering still

So many after such a long period away from these pages. This week I will put up some of the non-fiction I have collected still waiting patiently on my TBR pile.These I began to write this post about last April but illness has kept me away from posting. I am sad to report they are still on my TBR pile – the shame:(

Landmarks by Robert Macfarlane: which is a book mainly about the language of landscape, but the author wishes to entice us to engage more with the natural world and includes personalities past and present who have done so with good effect. Think it will be very interesting, and lists of new words, what’s not to like?:)

On the Map by Simeon Garfield: who will apparently be taking me on a ride through cartography from early explorers through the medieval period to Google. On the way taking in the colourful characters involved. Sounds good to me. I like a good map.

I Think You’ll Find It a Bit More Complicated Than You Think by Ben Goldacre:  Ben Goldacre is a doctor, writer, academic and broadcaster who is a mission to expose the fraudulent and unreliable scientific claims abounding in our world.  It promises to be a good read if disturbing.  As a science minded person with faith in my doctor I do also maintain a cynical attitude to business and the delight of money and fame that inflicts so many.

I must do better. Reduce the pile before it crashes to the ground to begin new piles!:)


I grounded the car for bad behaviour!: Friday Finds

FRIDAY FINDS  from adailyrhythm showcases the books you ‘found’ and added to your To Be Read (TBR) list… whether you found them online, or in a bookstore, or in the library — wherever! (they aren’t necessarily books you purchased).



You had all better sit to receive this next bit of news – I did NOT BUY any books this week — yes yes that’s correct, no money was exchanged this week on books.

Can hardly believe it myself.

It is such a rare event.

I cannot claim any virtue in this state of affairs, I was going too. Wednesday is book group day – held in a bookshop! Yeah all you addicts know what that entails:) however on Tuesday the car began to behave badly. What? I couldn’t decide it sounded like not just exhaust but maybe clutch problems at the same time. I do hope it isn’t either, or both. I have an appointment with the garage tomorrow and in the meantime I have grounded the car for bad behaviour.

I never made the book group = never bought any books:) I didn’t even turn to the Internet because if my worst fears are realized it will be a long time before I can afford any more books – sigh:)

I do have some new reads though. The Tuesday saw me at the library book group – so have next month’s book and three others I borrowed at the same time.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (next month’s read. I have seen the film and am hoping the book is much better!

Mr G by Allan Lightman (this one sounds intriguing – great hopes for it)

On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan (have been meaning to read this for ages)

Wise Words and Country Ways by Ruth Binney (It is always fun reading what our forbears believed in and this book promises more – whether there is any truth to old wives tales and the origins of some of the others. A good cherry-pick book)

Gone GirlMr g: A Novel About The CreationOn Chesil BeachWise Words And Country Ways


So four new reads – can’t be bad:)

One day I will write ‘no books! :Friday Finds

FRIDAY FINDS  from adailyrhythm showcases the books you ‘found’ and added to your To Be Read (TBR) list… whether you found them online, or in a bookstore, or in the library — wherever! (they aren’t necessarily books you purchased).


I already had the book choice for next month at the last reading group, and far to many fictional books on that tottering pile . I wasn’t going to take home any more books.

I wasn’t.

I did.


Anyway I wandered over to the non fiction section and found these three. I’m an avid reader of The New Scientist magazine so I had no hesitation in picking those two up

Non fiction

This Changes Everything by Naomi Aklein which is apparently provides a historically refined expose of ‘capitalism’s drift toward monopoly’ and more.

Chance ed Michael Brooks (New Scientist) The science and secrets of luck, randomness and probability

Question Everything ed Mick O’Hare (New Scientist) – 132 science questions – and their unexpected answers


All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr which was recommended to me a few weeks ago. A Second World War story but from a different perspective – it sounds like a good read.

So as you can see I haven’t been good – yet again!!

I am determined one day to write- NO BOOKS this week !:)

Waterproof books? oh please no! Musing Mondays


I have lined up my books for this coming week if my fancy doesn’t turn to something else. I have an unexpected visitor arriving later in the week who will be staying for a fortnight therefore reading time will be limited. I have to confess the garden is taking up quite a bit of my time at the moment and, as I am re-jigging the whole kit and caboodle, I am taking down various gardening books to dip in and out of. Not strictly reading them as in, from cover to cover, but I am certainly reading many sections of many books- not sure if this counts towards various goals. There are one or two which I find I have not read or have I just forgotten them? whichever, I am learning new aspects of gardening . One of the great sides to life is no matter how well one thinks one knows a subject there is always more that can be absorbed.

This coming week I have in the pile next to me

The Land of Green Plums by Herta Muller
Berta la Largu by Cuca Canals
The Falcons of Fire and Ice by Karen Maitland

The Norman Conquest by Marc Morris
The old ways by Robert Macfarlane

Left over from last time

Dark Winter by David Marr
The Emerald Planet by David Beerling

The first two being translated novels and the third is my fourth title by her. Large and long but so worth the reading. Dark Winter is a must as it is for the next reading group.

As time will be limited I may well scotch any idea of reading the non fiction titles and pass them onto another pile.

The random question this week is about waterproof books – good or bad idea?

I am not altogether sure why anyone would want any. Over decades of reading including by swimming pools, the sea and in my bath I have never managed to make any book I have read wet. Are people particularly clumsy when reading near water?

As for reading in the shower,

Oh please!

I am a dyed in the wool bookworm, you cannot find a keener reader of books than moi. I have paper, Sony reader and audio books, I devour them all and throw in magazines and journals as pudding. However, why in the shower? The shower is for scrubbing off the day’s dirt and angst. A few minutes a day concentrating on self , cleaning, pampering, is good for you, and society.For those who spend much longer than that, have you considered the water shortage the world faces? just asking:)

No, no, no I wouldn’t donate a penny towards such a ludicrous idea:)

Although I feel in my ancient bones that although this is a crazy idea and just adding to the overuse of fossil fuel to make the plastics to create them, add to the non disposable pile of faddy junk we litter our planet with it, will be done. Done because it’s new, it’s technology, it’s do-able and therefore shall be done.

Ah me, I despair of humanity sometimes I really do:)

Musing Mondays is a weekly meme that asks you to choose one of the following prompts to answer:

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

 + a random question of the week


Wordsmiths & Warriors review: British Books Challenge

 The British Books Challenge is a reading challenge that will be running  on Fluttering Butterflies between 1st January to 31st December 2015 and the main focus of the challenge is reading and reviewing books by British authors.
If you sign up for the challenge you will be aiming to read at least 12 books by British authors (which works out to one a month).
In terms of what books would count towards the challenge – the books can be in print or out. Old or new titles. They can be from any genre and for any age range.


February so far has given me mostly horror and mayhem – Urban fantasy and psychological thriller. In stark contrast to January’s reads. I do like variety. I have read five so far this month and that makes for too long a post, so I will be dividing them up.

Starting with the one non-fiction I have read so far this month

Wordsmiths & Warriors: the English Language Tourist’s Guide to Britain by David and Hilary Crystal


Hardcover, 424 pages
Published December 1st 2013 by Oxford University Press (UK)

Blurb:Who formed and shaped the English language? David and Hilary Crystal take us on a journey through Britain to discover the people who gave our language its colour and character; Saxon invaders, medieval scholars, poets, reformers, dictionary writers. Part travelogue, part history, this illustrated book is full of unexpected discoveries.

Northern Ireland is not included in this journey, nor the islands, this is mainland Britain only. Maybe he plans another on these missing places. I hope so.

For anyone like myself who is fascinated with the journey of the English Language from small tribes to global this is a must. It is also great for those who on their jaunts around the country wish to have places of interest to visit. They should all read this book.

Small and large sites, villages and towns are on offer with good, clear,English (if anyone can deliver good clear intelligent English it is David Crystal) Fascinating little snippets and titbits of information alongside better known facts. From the earliest know written word, through the language development in England, Wales and Scotland through to the latest technology for analyzing grammar. Hillary Crystal provides the excellent photographs of each place. They are plentiful and clear.

For the travelers among us, there are excellent details on how to get to each place.

I would recommend this. David Crystal is always worth reading and these historical insights adds to our enjoyment of heritage.