Book Review – The Heir’s Tale by April Munday

The Heir’s Tale is the first book in the series, The Soldiers of Fortune, tracing the fortunes of the sons of the Earl of Somerton following the Battle of Poitiers. In 1357, Ancelin Montfort, the Earl’s second son, returns home bringing with him the news of his elder brother John’s death in that battle. Ancelin … Continue reading Book Review – The Heir’s Tale by April Munday

Book Review – Call of the Curlew by Elizabeth Brooks

Call of the Curlew begins on 30 December 2015. 86-year-old Virginia Wrathmell has known for years that one New Year’s Eve she will walk onto the marsh and meet her end there. She has been waiting for a sign. The sign has now appeared on her doorstep in the form of a fragile curlew’s skull. … Continue reading Book Review – Call of the Curlew by Elizabeth Brooks

My Reading – January 2019

Call of the Curlew by Elizabeth Brooks Virginia Wrathmell knows she will walk on the marsh one New Year's Eve, and meet her end there. The Corset by Laura Purcell My sainted mother taught me the seven acts of corporeal mercy: to feed the hungry; refresh the thirsty; clothe the naked; shelter the traveller; visit … Continue reading My Reading – January 2019

My Reading – December 2018

Shell by Kristina Olsson The day the great man sang, heat blazed in haloes over Bennelong Point. The Way of All Flesh by Ambrose Parry No decent story ought to begin with a dead prostitute and for that, apologies, for it is not something upon which respectable persons would desire to dwell. The Ghost Tree … Continue reading My Reading – December 2018

Book Review – Graveyard Clay (Cré na Cille) by Máirtín Ó Cadhain

Graveyard Clay (Cré na Cille) by Máirtín Ó Cadhain is set in a graveyard in the west of Ireland in the early 1940s and is a continuing dialogue between those buried there. These are not spirits waiting to be translated elsewhere but rather the coffin-bound corpses of the dead. They have brought with them into … Continue reading Book Review – Graveyard Clay (Cré na Cille) by Máirtín Ó Cadhain

Book Review – The Lady of the Tower by Elizabeth St John

The Lady of the Tower imagines the life of Lucy St John, a descendant of Margaret Beauchamp (maternal grandmother of Henry VII), from 1603 as she emerges from girlhood to 1630 when she was wife of the Keeper of the Tower of London. With the death of Lucy’s mother five years earlier, the family has been … Continue reading Book Review – The Lady of the Tower by Elizabeth St John

Book Review – The Beaufort Bride by Judith Arnopp

Lady Margaret Beaufort, an heiress of the house of Lancaster, was the mother of Henry VII, the first Tudor king of England. She is now generally seen in the popular imagination as an austere scheming woman, politically ruthless and a religious fanatic. Margaret was the daughter and sole heiress of John Beaufort, 1st Duke of Somerset. … Continue reading Book Review – The Beaufort Bride by Judith Arnopp

Book Review – The Trick to Time by Kit de Waal

The Trick to Time is a poignant story of love and loss. Mona, an Irishwoman nearing 60, lives in a coastal town in England where she makes dolls for a living that she sells in her shop and online. The dolls' bodies are of wood, beautifully carved and finished by an almost reclusive carpenter who … Continue reading Book Review – The Trick to Time by Kit de Waal

Book Review – The Last Temptation by Nikos Kazantzakis

The publication in 1955 of The Last Temptation by Nikos Kazantzakis led to a campaign by Greek Orthodox clergy to have Kazantzakis excommunicated as they considered the work blasphemous. It was published in English in 1960, the same year that the book was placed on the Catholic Church’s Index Librorum Prohibitorum (dismantled in 1966 following … Continue reading Book Review – The Last Temptation by Nikos Kazantzakis