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World Poetry Day 2014: Greece

Today is World Poetry Day and I’m going to share a poem by a Greek poet, Phoebe Giannisi, who I recently discovered. I found her work on Greek Poetry Now! which I can recommend as a good place to go, if you’d like to read some great contemporary Greek poetry.

I’ve chosen it because it expresses exactly how I feel when I’m swimming laps, how swimming allows me to shrug off the outside world and any worries I may have, and how it frees up my mind. Although unlike the open-air swimmer in the poem, I usually have to make do with my local council pool. Which is fine but not quite the same…

(Penelope I _ am addicted to you) by Phoebe Giannisi Read more

World Book Day shelfie

It’s World Book Day today and there’s been a lot of bookish fun happening on Twitter and FB to celebrate. I’ve had some great booky conversations; I’ve also been to Cardiff libraries, in particular, Roath library, in order to find a copy of The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd – because the copy I have is missing some 50 pages – or rather, instead of the 50 pages I was expecting, it had duplicated 50 pages from earlier in the book instead. I’m about to go and read those missing 50 pages now but before I do, I thought I’d share this WBD #shelfie.

These are my ‘Arthur Ransome’ shelves: all of his books in Cape hardback and audiocassette, books about his life, books and locations, and all the other books on the sea, sailing and pirates that his books set me off in search of once I’d finished reading and re-reading all of his Swallows and Amazons series. I started reading his books when I was nine and every so often, I still go back and re-read one now I’m old enough to be an Aged Parent and I  still find it hard to resist a book set in, on or around the sea or one about pirates or sailing.

Swallows and Amazons Forever! 

Liz de Jager’s Banished: Book launch and review

Last Thursday, Squizz and I boarded our trusty steed, megabus, and headed to London for our first book launch of 2014.

It was for Liz de Jager’s debut YA novel, Banished, the first book in The Blackhart Legacy trilogy, and was held at one of our favourite bookshops, Foyles, on Charing Cross Road. I took full advantage of that and had a thorough browse before heading to the cafe to meet up with our favourite launch buddy, JayneFerst.

The launch itself was held in Foyles’ Gallery and by the time we arrived, it was packed full of people and there was a great buzz. We said hi to Liz, who took Squizzey’s photo, which he loved, and then we left the lovely lady author to meet and greet while we sampled the delicious wine on offer and some of the launch booty. And, as you can see from the picture above, there were some terrific Blackhart (the fae-fighting heroine’s family) cookies and different flavours of popcorn to satisfy even the weirdest most discerning of palates.

It was a terrific evening, full of friendly faces and there was a whole lot of warmth and love for Liz in the room. If you follow her on Twitter, you’ll know that she deserved nothing less than every bit of that to see her first novel, Banished, launched out into the book world. I wish it and Liz every success.

And now to the book itself. Here’s what I made of Banished: Read more

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