Month: February 2018

Snow Pictures

It’s cold. Apparently this is The Beast From The East (gotta have a catchy name these days to get anywhere as a weather front!) Still to come is Storm Emma.

Thankfully so far I have had no travel woes apart from slow traffic, but as we allow plenty of time to get to the station it wasn’t too bad.

Snow photos are obligatory on the Internet so here’s a snowy Super Lambanana in Liverpool, a snowy tree stump in Eccles and a snow laden bench and mysterious snow fairy ring at Eccles train station. Enjoy!

Attempting to be more…something.

From my plethora of shiny, happy notebooks and journals I have decided to use this jolly orange number to carry with me for stuff.

Lists, ideas, feelings, phrases that pop into my head, things to do, places to go, notes for reference later, all shall go in here. I have decorated it with a witty sticker to celebrate.

Hopefully this will lead to being more organised and potentially more and better posts here, but I wouldn’t hold your breath to be honest. (Maybe I’ll remember more bits for the book posts of I actually jot down notes instead of forgetting that my memory is completely pants and fails me an a regular basis)

2018 Reading Challenge Book 6 – The Geek’s Guide to SF Cinema: 30 Key Films that Revolutionised the Genre by Ryan Lambie

There’s a fair chance that every single one of these book posts are going to be gushy.

This book had me from the introduction as the author laid out the criteria for choosing the films on the list. I haven’t seen them all, some certainly aren’t films I would enjoy but all are very definitely worthy of being written about.

Each film chapter is followed by a piece about other films in the same sub-genre, fleshing out the context of the films etc.. All fascinating stuff and written in a style that is easy to read for new fans of sci-fi movies and old.

I adore that there’s no indication that you have to have seen every film on this list or you are somehow less of a fan of the genre. The writing style is friendly, straight forward and not opinionated. (To be fair I expected nothing less from a regular writer at Den Of Geek)

I love books that I can go back to and use as reference, so when I get around to watching (or re-watching) films featured I can read up on them.

2018 Reading Challenge Book 5–What Does This Button Do? Bruce Dickinson

I loved this book! (To be fair I select books that I’m reasonably certain I will enjoy, and am likely to not bother finishing ones that don’t hold my attention.)

 

The narrative moves at a reasonable pace, sometimes biographies get bogged down in certain places such as childhood or when a particular interest of the writer crops up, but this keeps a steady rhythm to it all with only a couple of moments where it drifts a tiny bit. As he states at the end of the book he leaves out births, marriages and divorces, maybe that’s the sort of salacious content some people want from autobiographies but I’ll be frank I really didn’t notice the lack of personal stuff in there because the tales of his career and various hobbies were enough to keep the pages turning. Sometimes the style is blunt, but never cruel, at times it’s almost like tales regaled to friends down the pub. There is an ego present, but it’s a balanced one.

The whole book is fascinating stuff covering music, fencing and flying all with relevant anecdotes thrown in along the way. The final chapter is particularly strong as Bruce battles cancer. If I didn’t know he’d made it out the other side of it all I’m not sure I could have got through it. (The final chapter of Greg Lake’s biography where he talks about his fight with the disease is very difficult to read knowing that he lost.)

I have a lovely signed hardback of this book thanks to a very good friend queuing up at a signing event when I had to catch a train, however I also got the kindle version to read as I really didn’t fancy risking damage to the signed copy by lugging it to and from work in my bag each day.

 

2018 Reading Challenge Books 2-4 No Such Thing As A Fish, Susan Calman and Sarah Millican

For a change I seem to be rattling through books at a good lick. Combining the latest three into one post as I didn’t get chance to post when I finished each of them.

The No Such Thing As A Fish Book of The Year

Much like the DoG book (see previous entry) this is the kind of book I am fascinated by. I love random facts. I wish I remembered more of them. Focusing on 2017 this book is chocked full of facts, all in alphabetical order (with amusing cross references). I do hope they plan to do this every year. By the way the No Such Thing As A Fish weekly podcast is well worth a listen if you like this sort of thing.

 

Cheer Up Love – Susan Calman

I’ve been following Susan Calman on twitter for a while after enjoying her appearances on The News Quiz and QI.  I’ve also loved her pure joy at being on Strictly Come Dancing. This book is a very honest, but still amusing where applicable, account of her dealing with her depression. The ultimate message is that you are not alone and even at the deepest, darkest, lowest point there is a way back. It’s written in a very approachable way, and I look forward to the next book which I think is due in September and is about kindness.

How To Be Champion – Sarah Millican
I loved this book! I bought it just out of curiosity for the kindle when it was on offer. I’d seen tweets to Sarah Millican about how much people had enjoyed it so figured it was worth a punt at 99p. It is brilliant. I found it relatable, reassuring and most of all funny. All of that could be because I am of a similar age and have a similar relationship with cake, but even so it’s a smashing book.

 

 

Next up – What Does This Button Do? – Bruce Dickinson

 

 

Links to the books in this post –