Books

My Big Book Hangover

I like Big ****s and I cannot lie

You other readers can’t deny

That when…….

Rapid Fire Book Tag: As seen on Nut Free Nerd

#8 The last book you finished?

Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon

#15 Long or Short Books?

Medium?!?!

I’ve just finished the fourth book in the Outlander series and I think I’m done. Did I like it? Yes, yes, yes but at 1185 pages it was long long long. I started reading this series, this year after watching the first two seasons of the Outlander tv show. All have been amazing. But now at the end of this fourth book I feel like a lot of ends have been tied up and I’m not convinced any further books will add value to this beloved story. I sadly found myself skimming through some pages in this volume just to get to the answers in the plot. I didn’t enjoy the journey of this book so much I just really really wanted to know what happened to the characters. I’m not a terribly patient person so having to get through 1185 pages was a hard slog for my happily ever after. So whilst I still loved this book, and seeing what was happening for my beloved characters it was just tooo long 😦

Secondly I didn’t quite find the love story of Brianna and Roger as captivating as Claire and Jamie’s. But I have spent all night and morning thinking about the book so I am no doubt hooked.

 

I told you I suck at book reviews :p

Have you read the Outlander books?

How do you feel about big big books??

 

ps By the looks of GoodReads other readers felt similarly

pps Another review reminded me of Lord John – I really loved how he helped Brianna

 

 

 

 

 

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Books · Uncategorized

WWW Wednesday 12th July

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words. It’s a fun way of adding to your TBR list and a great way to connect with fellow bookish people. Anyone can participate. All you’ve got to do is answer the three Ws below and post a link to your answers here. Be sure to check out other blogger’s contributions too!

What are you currently reading:

An Almond for a Parrot by Wray Delaney – this is my bookclub read for July and halfway in I’m very interested. Set in London in 1756 and told by the main protagonist Tully Truegood, a neglected motherless child before being taken in by a wealthy Madame. Tully has some secret talents we are just learning about and unfortunately a husband forced upon her at 12 and only back on the scene now she’s 17. Although told retrospectively from prison, I have no idea where this book is headed!

I also started the audio book Big Girl Panties by Stephanie Evanovich last friday which quickly drew me in but amazingly I am on holidays this week with the whole family so not getting in of that in.

(Still on the back burners Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert and Silence by Shūsaku Endō)

What did you recently finish reading:

Out of the Depths – John Netwon’s autobiography. I listened to this and fell in love with the voice of the narrator finding it incredibly soothing as a found myself in peak hour traffic, so while I got a few nuggets from the book mostly it just floated over me.

What do you think you’ll read next:

Outlander #4 – Drums of Change by Diana Gabaldon

Which blogs I wanted to share:

I had two relationship poems come up in my feed this week which gave me food for thought:

From Pleasant Street

we had to struggle to get here
and here is not even finished yet–
for all our work–we can relax now
knowing I love you and you love me–the
rest we can work out over time
because we already took care
of the hard part

and from Roth Poetry

EER_0167

 

 

 

Thanks for joining me – here’s to making time for reading!!

 

 

 

life · relationships · Uncategorized

Three Thoughts

My first personal memory of a community in mourning was when a woman was murdered from a previous workplace of mine. Even when you may not be closely associated with a person, the magnitude of the loss of their life can still floor you. I guess that is how it is for some people with celebrity deaths.

In recent times my local community has been struck by tragedy after tragedy after tragedy. As I watched footage tonight of six young pall bearers I reflected on the honour that no person wants but that I was so blessed to have for My Friend. Thought One.

Secondly I’ve finally had the ‘holiday’ experience I’ve been dreaming of this week – ending the day with episodes of Grey’s Anatomy. But (spoiler alert) I’m watching the episodes about Keppner and Avery’s baby and reflecting on the choice I was once given to terminate my pregnancy. Mostly I consider the blessing I had to continue to carry him in my womb, for which I will forever be grateful. Thought Two.

Today was about tax, work notes, Telstra and chores. Thought Three – I hate end of year time as part of my in-laws family business. I hate what I feel to be judgement and a complete misunderstanding of who I am and my values. But on the bright side hubby and I have been communicating well and that is something I wish I could hang onto for all time.

Any thoughts you care to get off you chest?

God bless

reviews · Uncategorized

Amazing Matilda

I returned from a morning smoko this week with hubby, utterly disappointed with my truly uninterested audience’s response to my review from having attended Matilda the Musical the night before! Fortunately I have a blog to express my views on too – so here is take 2 on my ravings, fingers crossed you are more appreciative 😛

Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical as performed at the Adelaide Festival Theatre – *spoilers abound*

Walking into the theatre and seeing the set, was a bit like the Beast leading Belle into the castle’s library.

20170621_125412

Then came the first song, SO. MUCH. ENERGY. It was phenomenal, particularly the choreography.  The next highlight for me was the School Song, the lyrics to this (and again the dancing!) blew me away.

“So you think you’re a (A)ble
To survive this mess by be (B) ing a Prince or a Princess
You will soon see(C)
There’s no escaping tragedy (D)
And e (E) ven (E)
If you put in heaps of eff (F)ort
You’re just wasting energy(G)
‘Cause your life as you know it is an (H) cient  history

All the way through to … Just you wait for Phys-ed (Z)” (from Matilda London Cast – School Song Lyrics | MetroLyrics)

We soon meet Miss Trunchball – character perfection! First her (his) twirling baton in the first act but so much more spectacularly and hilariously in the song The Smell of Rebellion. The second act started with an almost comedic routine by Matilda’s Dad Mr. Wormwood. He started with the hallmarks of a ‘don’t try this at home’ warning, quite relevant for all the gymnastic moves we’d seen so far, but instead directed at reading. My niece was giving off death stares, how dare he speak against books and poor Nicole who put her hand up!

I can’t say enough how much the cast amazed me with their dancing. Favourites for me included Bruce, When I Grow Up (the swings!) and Revolting Children (particularly Bruce’s centre stage!)

All the characters were so well performed, Mrs Wormwood, Matilda’s brother Michael, Miss Honey, Miss Phelps and the Russian Boss with his pink lolly pop  – just to name a limited few. And to end it all off they came out for the finale riding colourful scooters.

It truly a masterpiece. Thank you to my family for taking me.

Within the program (which, yes I read cover to cover!) comments by the music and lyric and script writer’s (Dennis Kelly and Tim Minchin) were written under the title Books vs Stories. Dennis Kelly suggested a very good research direction – ‘do chimps tell stories’ and do animals have imagination? For he proposed our imaginations are a ‘vibrant necessary part of being alive’ and ‘without stories we’re just eating machines with shoes’. I’ve just shared a video on FB in response to Pauline Hanson’s* hideous comments regarding (I believe) segregation of children on the autism disorder spectrum. Matilda the Musical demonstrates that there are two types of people – those who love stories and those who don’t. It is clear to me which group Ms Hanson is in – the mean, irritating and stupid. So unlike the Miss Honey’s of the world; kind generous, alive and loving. ‘Denying stories is denying the most human part of being a human.’ Much like Ms Hanson is deny the lived experience/story of all people with disabilities.

I also took away from this show not so much the message to be A Little Bit Naughty although Matilda taught it well but something I prefer to tell my children that

Just because you find that life’s not fair it
Doesn’t mean that you just have to grin and bear it!
If you always take it on the chin and wear it
You might as well be saying
You think that it’s okay
And that’s not right!
And if its not right!
You have to put it right!

But nobody else is gonna put it right for me
nobody but me is gonna change my story

Tim Minchin wrote that ‘stories are best when… like a rollercoaster, with highs and lows, twists and turns, a good bit of fear and the significant risk that someone may vomit, ‘ which indeed Matilda had all, with music to accentuate all of these experiences.

After attending events like this I suddenly have a great desire to become a leading supporter of the Arts, unfortunately this like my dream job of being a philanthropist tends to go by the way side. But I do go a little bit crazy on Wikipedia and FB like-ing.  While as a christian I don’t think I can fully support Tim Minchin (renound atheist), his talent is undeniable and Matilda and Me his DVD is officially on my wishlist.

To finish off – interesting fact, Roald Dahl began writing Matilda when he was 70

 

Books · Uncategorized

WWW Wednesday 14th June

I’m back!

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. It’s fun and simple, you just have to answer the three W’s: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next? You can also join by answering and linking your blog post back on Sam’s post.

What are you currently reading:

On the back burners Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert and Silence by Shūsaku Endō

What did you recently finish reading:

Voyager by Diana Gabaldon (book #3 in the Outlander series) – this book was my long weekend, handed in a big assignment treat. And what a treat it was. There were a few things I was perhaps a bit disappointed in but overall I just love the passion between Jamie and Claire and all the adventures they manage to find themselves in and the characters they surround themselves with. I was just mostly disappointed with how the Jenny/Laoghaire/Claire issue was resolved. Diana amazed me with her plot creativity

I also finished  The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton somewhat recently after a mammoth effort – the thing about audio books is you don’t know how big they are (page wise) when choosing and this one was a 700 pager!

What do you think you’ll read next:

The Messenger by Markus Zusak, our next bookclub book. I’m pretty keen to get into Outlander #4 too!

Plus

Which children’s book I liked:

Graeme Base’s Little Bug Books very cute, cool opening flaps and my 4 year old loved finding the bug!

 

 

I’ve also made some progress on the When are you reading Challenge

Progress Tracker

Pre 1500 – The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

1500-1599 

1600-1699 – in progress….Silence

1700-1799 – Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

1800-1899  The Luminaries – Eleanor Catton

1900-1919

1920-1939 – The Small Woman by Alan Burgess

1940-1959

1960-1979 – Exposure by Helen Dunmore

1980-1999 

2000-Present – (big little lies?)

The Future 

Uncategorized

I’ve still been thinking of you.

Dear WordPress,

I’ve been a bit absent and sadly I think it’s set to continue. I love you and think of you daily – endless small thoughts of things I want to share but finding the time and space to actually type those down … just doesn’t seem to happen.

 

There was the day I attended the funeral of a pillar of my local community

The day we were out celebrating a 1st birthday and at the same venue was a woman celebrating her 100th birthday

The movie Still Alice, an amazing insight into dementia

The books I’ve finished – Psalms, Lamentations, Dragonfly in Amber (and how I’ve worked so hard to stop myself starting Book 3 of the Outlander series until I finish my study for the semester!), A Man called Possum – written about a local character, a generous unusual man who lived entirely off the land, and tonight A Quiet Strength by Janette Oke an old quick favourite which was just perfect for a Friday night

The vulnerability to depressive thoughts I’ve been reading about in my counselling studies and battling in my daily life and then learning that perhaps instead of battling I could find a way to accept (?)

Days of feeling like a super Mum (ok one day where all it took was a little extra effort after providing rather boring holidays!)

Enjoying the blue sky-filled days, walking the dog (followed by the pet sheep!), watching all the men moving various machinery

The struggle to balance feeling productive, feeling rested and just getting stuff done

Re-connecting with friends and realising we all struggle with dealing with social anxieties

Worrying about my hard-working husband, hoping seeding is nearly done so he can rest

 

You’re good therapy for me WordPress, even just the thought of being able to share on you can be enough. So please excuse me as I keep on keeping on. I will be back.

sincerely

GJ

 

 

 

life · study · Uncategorized

Home day curse?

I’ve done my back. Well actually the issue is more in my hips and it is very much improved from Wednesday but….

First time this year I had some free time our puppy broke his leg

Second time I got majorly stressed out

Third time I couldn’t walk for 2 days

I’m sensing a pattern I am in no way impressed with. But then again these things are meant to come in threes so I should be ok now, right? Right?!?

Life however is good

I’ve been really enjoying A Place to Call Home although it has also challenged my beliefs around homosexuality – the treatment of a man in this series because of his sexual desires is horrific

I’ve caught up on my wordpress feed, so much good stuff – I think my next challenge is to read a non-fiction book perhaps one by Neil Postman

I’ve handed in all due assignments so far – this week will be the big challenge though with my first lengthy essay.

All three of my teams won their games today – be warned netball related post on my mind

I love my kids and family – what more can i say 🙂

Hope you’re weekend is going well, preferably less the aches and pains I’m experiencing but also full of love.

 

It’s nice to touch base, God bless

 

ps Feel free to share a tidbit from your life – I need all the distraction from study I can get!!