You know summer is on the way when the noisy friarbirds reappear in the garden! They are such funny-looking birds, but their calls are so weird they’re cute. They’re constantly chatting to each other.
It’s late Sunday morning here and I’m (sort of) working on edits for an upcoming book. It’s probably not something I should admit, but I’m pretty bored with the story at this point!
A wrecked bus is photographed amongst the destruction in Coventry, England after a German Luftwaffe air raid on the night of 14-15 November, 1940.
Coventry suffered heavy damage in the Second World War. The city’s famous cathedral was one of the casualties of the “Coventry Blitz”, which killed many hundreds and left thousands without homes.
This book looks fascinating (in a horrible way). When the word “genocide” is mentioned in relation to the 20th century, people think of the Holocaust, and very occasionally of Rwanda. What they never remember is the genocides committed in the name of communism, such as Stalin’s genocides in Ukraine and Kazakhstan, and the genocide in Cambodia.
The book is also a look at the atrocities being committed by Putin in (and outside) present-day Russia.
This looks to be an important read.
Written and illustrated by an award-winning artist and translated into English for the first time, Igort’s The Ukrainian and Russian Notebooks is a collection of two harrowing works of graphic nonfiction about life under Russian foreign rule.
After spending two years in Ukraine and Russia, collecting the stories of the survivors and witnesses to Soviet rule, masterful Italian graphic novelist Igort was compelled to illuminate two shadowy moments in recent history: the Ukraine famine and the assassination of a Russian journalist. Now he brings those stories to new life with in-depth reporting and deep compassion.
In The Russian Notebooks, Igort investigates the murder of award-winning journalist and human rights activist Anna Politkoyskaya. Anna spoke out frequently against the Second Chechen War, criticising Vladimir Putin. For her work, she was detained, poisoned, and ultimately murdered. Igort follows in her tracks, detailing Anna’s assassination and the stories of abuse, murder, abduction, and torture that Russia was so desperate to censor. In The Ukrainian Notebooks, Igort reaches further back in history and illustrates the events of the 1932 Holodomor. Little known outside of Ukraine, the Holodomor was a government-sanctioned famine, a peacetime atrocity during Stalin’s rule that killed anywhere from 1.8 to twelve million ethnic Ukrainians. Told through interviews with the people who lived through it, Igort paints a harrowing picture of hunger and cruelty under Soviet rule.
With elegant brush strokes and a stark color palette, Igort has transcribed the words and emotions of his subjects, revealing their intelligence, humanity, and honesty—and exposing the secret world of the former USSR.
Note: I am featuring some of the review books I’ve had for a while, but run out of time to review. That’s not to say I’m not going to read them; it’s just that I’ve fallen behind, and think the authors deserve an appearance here!
By turns thrilling, dramatic and touching, this is the story of Henry the Eighth and Catherine of Aragon’s divorce as you’ve never heard it before – from the eyes of their daughter, Princess Mary.
More than anything Mary just wants her family to stay together; for her mother and her father – and for her – to all be in the same place at once. But when her father announces that his marriage to her mother was void and by turns that Mary doesn’t really count as his child, she realises things will never be as she hoped.
Things only get worse when her father marries again. Separated from her mother and forced to work as a servant for her new sister, Mary must dig deep to find the strength to stand up against those who wish to bring her down. Despite what anyone says, she will always be a princess. She has the blood of a princess and she is ready to fight for what is rightfully hers.
Note: I am featuring some of the review books I’ve had for a while, but run out of time to do a review for. That’s not to say I’m not going to read them; it’s just that I’ve fallen behind, and think the authors deserve an appearance here!
I’m always excited to see young adult books with historical settings. So many very young people were at the heart of major events in history, and I think it’s an underrepresented genre.
A Queen fights for her life.
A King denies his heart and soul.
A girl faces her true identity.
All things must come to an end—all things but love.
IN THE WINTER OF 1535, fourteen-year-old Kate Carey wants to escape her family home. She thinks her life will be so much better with Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second wife and the aunt she idolises. Little does Kate know that by going to attend Anne Boleyn she will discover love and a secret that will shake the very foundations of her identity. As an attendant to Anne Boleyn, Kate is swept up in events that see her witness her aunt’s darkest days. By the time winter ends, Kate will be changed forever.
What’s wrong with this cover?, you might ask, and – at first glance, my answer would be: nothing.
The gown is one of my favourite colours, and the diamond theme makes it all sparkly and pretty. It’s in the same pseudo-Regency style as most historical romance covers these days, and it gets bonus points for skipping the waxed/oiled/mostly naked man to go with the woman.
This book is set in the **twentieth century**.
As in: this book is set in the century we were born in.
It already drove me bonkers how all Victorian-era historical romances end up with Regency covers, because:
And – here’s the era the book in question is set. She looks a little different to the woman in the blue dress!:
Two things are at work here:
#1 “Regency” has become shorthand to indicate any book set in any century in the past.
Which is annoying because:
#2 Fans of the genre are treated like they’re stupid.
It’s such a pet hate of mine, if you failed to notice! 🙂
Elizabeth Gaskell. 29th September 1810 – 12th November 1865.