The Week: 16th – 21st April

Autumn Leaves Autumn Colours Sonya Heaney 20th April 2018 Tuggeranong Canberra Australia Blue Sky Sunny Afternoon Autumn Heatwave Garden Nature

Blue skies, summer temperatures, and autumn colours in Canberra this week.

This has been a beautiful week, weather-wise. Why we’re still having summer temperatures when it’s almost winter is very confusing!

We went out to lunch on Saturday (fantastic Spanish restaurant!), and we knew there was going to be back burning in the centre of Canberra, but we weren’t quite prepared to be driving past active burns RIGHT NEXT TO Federal Parliament and the US embassy! I don’t have a proper picture, but here is one from later that afternoon. You can see a sole fire engine on the right, but a few hours earlier the whole place was full of flames and fire engines with lights etc.

The Russian authorities have been making a joke out of everything they’ve done recently. This week they tortured several Crimean Tartars to death. Don’t expect to see it on the Western news…

They’re turning the Novichok assassination attempts in England into a joke, and they now have a food brand named after the poison (“Новичок” is the Cyrillic spelling for the nerve agent – it’s on the labels on the bottles here). And I’d love to know why people think the hammer and sickle symbol tens of millions died under is okay. Imagine if they used the swastika.

This week Twitter *finally* banned Russia’s Kaspersky from advertising on their site. Several years ago I had awkward conversations with young men working at computer shops (JB Hi-Fi – I’m giving you the side-eye!). They were all told to push customers to buy Russian internet security, and I got dirty looks and muttered comments when I told them that – under no circumstances – would I buy Russian-branded security software.

Now, of course, everyone says it. But I am so freaking tired of people refusing to listen to Ukrainians. It’s only been since America and England were touched by Russian misbehaviour that people stopped thinking I was discriminatory and alarmist. It breaks my heart how little everyone listens to people who KNOW.

Recommended Book: The Road to Unfreedom: Russia, Europe, America by Timothy Snyder

The Road to Unfreedom Russia, Europe, America by Timothy Snyder

Coming Soon from Theresa Romain

Lady Rogue (The Roguish Runners Duo #1) by Theresa Romain

Cover Love

Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor (The Sutherland Sisters #1) by Anna Bradley

My review of How Do Cats Do That?: Discover How Cats Do The Amazing Things They Do by Peter Scottsdale

How Do Cats Do That Discover How Cats Do The Amazing Things They Do by Peter Scottsdale

Getting Back on Track

Marry in Scandal (Convenient Marriage series #2) by Anne Gracie

Nineteen Years

Columbine_Shooting_Security_CameraColumbine High School massacre

Cover Love

Ignore the fact her gown is falling off and she forgot her underwear, and LOOK AT THE BACKGROUND. What amazing attention to detail – especially for a genre that rarely bothers.

Lady Eleanor’s Seventh Suitor (The Sutherland Sisters #1) by Anna Bradley is out now. The blurb is beneath the cover.

Lady Eleanor's Seventh Suitor (The Sutherland Sisters #1) by Anna Bradley

Two sought-after sisters, a slew of suitors—and a vow to hold out for true love. How many proposals will it take to get to “I do”—especially when the stakes are high . . .

There have been six suitors so far, all vying for the attention—and generous dowry—of the beautiful, elusive Eleanor Sutherland. What does this woman really want? Who has what it takes to melt the heart of the so-called Lady Ice? These are the questions Camden West keeps asking himself. But rather than wait for answers, Cam takes matters into his own hands . . . for he has a secret weapon.

Cam knows that Ellie’s sister, Charlotte, harbors a scandalous secret—one that could bring ruin to the Sutherland name. If Ellie marries him, Cam promises to keep mum. But is she willing to sacrifice her own happiness for her sister’s reputation?

To Ellie’s surprise, it becomes clear that Cam doesn’t need her money, nor is he interested in her status. Soon, what begins as a sham engagement transforms into something deeper, and more passionate, than Ellie could have imagined. Is it possible that all Cam truly wanted was her? And is that reason enough to say yes—or is handsome Cam hiding something else? Even for a lady in love, only the truth will do . . .

The Week: 20th – 26th November

Canberra Australia Spring Sunset #2 Sonya Heaney Tuggeranong 19th November 2017 Sky Clouds Nature

Canberra Australia Spring Sunset #1 Sonya Heaney Tuggeranong 19th November 2017 Sky Clouds Nature

Spring skies in Canberra

End of Spring Canberra Australian Capital Territory Australia Sonya Heaney Sunny Warm Afternoon Blue Sky Garden Flowers Nature 22nd November 2017

Blue sky and sunshine at the end of spring…

Canberra Braddon Rainbow Roundabout Gayest City in Australia Most Gay-Friendly Andrew Barr Marriage Equality November 2017

What we did in Canberra this week. With far and away the highest “yes” vote for gay marriage of anywhere in Australia, we (it was actually already planned) painted a roundabout in one of the main restaurant streets in the city rainbow colours.

Garema Place Marriage Equality Gay Marriage Canberra Australia Andrew Barr November 2017

This follows on from the commissioned street art in one of our main squares, that was painted the afternoon of the result of the vote.

^^^^

Our latest idiot cat. Hannibal, an overly friendly Burmese cat (all Burmese cats are super-affectionate) being looked after by our neighbour for several months. If there’s anything higher than him, he MUST go to the top of it (it’s a good thing he has a bell)! He basically lives over here, and gets lonely and terrorises the house at all hours of the night. (They are actually two different photos, not me zooming in. He was standing there for ages!)

#Russian terrorists in #Ukraine. 5th April 2015.

This week, while the world was watching Zimbabwe (I must have watched a day’s worth of live coverage from Harare on Al Jazeera, BBC etc. – though it’s good to see Africa get some attention for once), Russia did one of the weirdest things yet.

The Russians running one proxy republic in the east of Ukraine invaded another proxy Russian-backed “republic” in Ukraine. All the while Russia says they’re not invading anyone. It has been called the most stupid invasion in history – and it may well be.

However, it’s looking more and more like Putin is going for a full-on invasion while his “useful idiot” in the White House distracts the media. Once he joins all his fake republics up, there’s a massive part of Ukraine both gone and filled with Russian troops. The rest of Europe should be very, very worried.

I have family in Donetsk – the most important city the Russians invaded three years ago. That nobody cares – even though it’s in Europe, and allegedly the world cares more about Europe than elsewhere – makes me frustrated, angry, and upset on a daily basis.

This week a tiger was shot after escaping a circus in the centre of Paris. I am shocked and horrified most people in the world (including most of Australia) still allows wild animals in

This week a tiger was shot after escaping a circus in the centre of Paris. I am shocked and horrified most people in the world (including most of Australia) still allows wild animals in circuses. We banned them in Canberra in 1992!

One Month Until Christmas

christmas-decorations-sonya-heaney-canberra-australia-1st-december-2016

My review of Twelfth Night with the Earl (The Sutherland Sisters #3) by Anna Bradley

Twelfth Night with the Earl (The Sutherland Sisters #3) by Anna Bradley

My review of When in Rome (Heart of the City #4) by C.J. Duggan

When in Rome (Heart of the City #4) by C.J. Duggan

Coming Up for Joanna Shupe

A Scandalous Deal (The Four Hundred Series #2) by Joanna Shupe

Cover Love

Valerie Bowman The Right Kind of Rogue 2

Literary Coin Purses

Wuthering Heights Purse Clutch. Kisslock Bag Quote Whatever Our Souls Are Made Of His And Mine Are The Same Bronte Bridal Wedding Bridesmaid

Twelfth Night with the Earl (The Sutherland Sisters #3) by Anna Bradley

Twelfth Night with the Earl (The Sutherland Sisters #3) by Anna Bradley

When a headstrong beauty clashes with the man she once loved, she’s determined that the spirit of Christmas will open his mind, heal his heart, and perhaps give them a reason to celebrate—for many seasons
to come . . .
 
As far as Ethan Fortescue is concerned, his family’s seat in Cornwall is only a source of torment, one that he’s managed to avoid for two years. Now that he’s the Earl of Devon however, he can close the door on his haunted past by locking up the cursed place for good. But upon arriving at Cleves Court, he is shocked to find the house aglow with Christmas celebrations, filled with music and laughter. And right at the center of the holiday madness is the infuriating—and eternally tempting—Theodosia Sheridan . . .
 
Thea has always loved the town of Cleves, especially at the holidays. As a girl, she also loved Ethan with all her heart. It’s painful to see how his brother’s tragic death has embittered him. Still, she will do anything to make sure the town thrives—even if it means going to battle with Ethan to save Cleves Court. Now she has only until Twelfth Night to make a Christmas miracle happen—by proving that his childhood home can be a source of love and wonder. But before long, she finds herself wondering if she’s trying to save the house—or its handsome master…

Twelfth Night with the Earl (The Sutherland Sisters #3) by Anna Bradley

This is a nice little book with some fun dialogue, and is perfect for the Christmas season.

Twelfth Night with the Earl might be listed as book three in a series, but there’s nothing in it that indicates you have to read in order.

I always perk up at a Cornwall setting, and Regency (like this one) and Victorian settings for Christmas books almost always make for great reads. Not sure why he was the “Earl of Devon”, though.

From the moment the mildly drunk and very grumpy hero rode onto the page I found this book to be great fun. Author Anna Bradley writes good dialogue and lively characters – including her secondary characters.

Yes, these characters aren’t behaving all that historically accurately – this series is more on the light-hearted end of the historical romance scale – but they’re entertaining.

I would have liked to have seen fewer references to “the holidays” (it has a really American ring to it), but that’s a small niggle.

If you’re looking for a lighter Christmas read, this one was pretty decent.

 

Review copy provided by NetGalley.