Review: The Devil in the Marshalsea by Antonia Hodgson

ISBN: 9781444775433 This is a nice change for me. It feels as though I’ve become a modernist, reading this. I’ve been transported from the fourteenth to the eighteenth century. This book is the winner of the 2014 CWA Historical Dagger Award, I’m told. Tom Hawkins, the wayward son of a country curate has been living … Continue reading

If It Looks Too Good To Be True …

So, this weekend we’ve lost another minister in the government. A man who is no doubt presently working hard today to keep his marriage together. What happened? Well, a man of moderate age, Brooks Newmark (crazy name, crazy damn fool) was sent texts and messages. These purported to come from Sophie, a young woman who … Continue reading

Review of A LOVE LIKE BLOOD  By Marcus Sedgewick

Published by Mulholland Books Paperback ISBN 9781444751925 price at £7.99 It is rare to pick up a book by an author one hasn’t read or heard of before, and to be so entirely blown away by the quality of the writing and the plot. I was sent this book in a pile of books to … Continue reading

Review of THE VANISHING WITCH  By Karen Maitland

  Published by Headline Review in paperback, trade paperback and hardback. Hardback ISBN: 9781472215000 I am very glad to be able to say that Karen Maitland is a good friend. Still, this is not a log-rolling exercise. I have a very simple policy when it comes to books. I do not like to give positive … Continue reading

Meet Guest Author Mike Jecks

Originally posted on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog:
Hi, I’m Mike Jecks, always writing under the name Michael Jecks, and I’m the author of 35 published books, as well as a bunch of short stories, novellas with Medieval Murderers, and, let’s not forget, five unpublished books. I never meant to be a writer.…

Another Week!

And so another week passes. The internet is growing to be a dangerous place, I think. In one week I’ve had three invitations per day asking me to give my money to people. Yes, they are casino operations, but I don’t care. These gambling sites are not designed to provide me with money, they are … Continue reading

Why I have no option

Originally posted on Quintin Jardine's blog:
I was born in Motherwell, Lanarkshire, somewhere between VE-Day and VJ-Day, at the drawn-out end of WWII. My home town made steel; it was sustained by the mills, even before the establishment of the Ravenscraig plant that dominated it for decades. It was a sectarian society, make no mistake about it;…


For those who haven’t quite had enough of Jecks this week, there’s an interview up here on a great blog site – hopefully it’ll bring out something new even for readers who know me quite well!

Scotland – and my own sadness.

I find the whole debate about Scottish independence deeply saddening. I don’t speak from any nationalistic point of view here, but only from a deep concern about the future, no matter how the Scots vote. If I was a Scot, I’d probably want to be independent. There, I’ve said it. I’ve been pretty keen to … Continue reading

I’m Back!

Okay, I’m sorry not to have warned folks that I was taking some time off, but that’s why I’ve been quiet and not responding to emails and comments. I’ve been away. The first two-week holiday my family’s ever had, and it was wonderful. I have had the ambition of travelling to France for a long … Continue reading