Review: LAST DAYS IN CLEAVER SQUARE

A new book by Patrick McGrath is, I am assured, one of those writers who can pull apart our darkest fears and expose them to us without making us flee them, to paraphrase New Statesman.  I can see why his work is popular. In this story, an old man, Francis McNulty, is coming to terms … Continue reading

Review: THE DROWNED CITY, by K.J. Maitland

Published by Headline Review in hardback, paperback, ebook and audio. Hardback published 1st April 2021, £16.99 A book by KJ Maitland is always something to savour. She has an enviable reputation both as a crime writer and expert in the beliefs and daily lives of our ancestors. In previous books she has delved into the … Continue reading

Managed Isolation Quarantine

The UK is operating a hotel-based isolation system for arrivals to the UK from certain countries and I thought it might be useful to give my own impressions of living in quarantine. Last year we had bad news. One week after cycling all around Lake Taupo, a total of over 150 km, our brother Alan, … Continue reading

Review: THE LAST BERSERKER by Angus Donald, Canelo

ISBN e-book:  978 1 80032 186 1        £3.99  Paperback: 978 1 80032 187 8 £8.99 I am not big on Vikings. I read a lot about them in the 1980s, but there was not a lot in their history that grabbed my attention. I was always more drawn to the first kings … Continue reading

Review: SHIELD OF THE RISING SUN, by Adam Lofthouse, published by Lume Books

ISBN: 978 1 83901197 9 I am writing this in a room in a hotel in Auckland, New Zealand. Outside the weather looks bright and clear, with clouds thinly covering the skies. In here it’s warm and not humid, and the room is in many ways a typical conference centre type of bedroom. However, there … Continue reading

Review: JOHN HERRING by Sabine Baring-Gould

Praxis Books, ISBN 978 09559517 01 – paperback £12.50 In these pages I tend to review more modern books, specifically crime – but I am changing. This is a case in point.  What is different about this book? Well, for one thing, the cover is a fabulous, really fabulous photograph. I have to say that … Continue reading

REVIEW: IN THE WOODS by Tana French, published by Hodder

ISBN 978 1 444 75834 4 Paperback £8.99 If you fancy a copy, here’s a link: https://amzn.to/3i6uFaR This is a book I read early this year. It was recommended to me while I was on a Smithsonian Journeys tour last October. I was the Smithsonian Expert for the trip, and one of the clients, an … Continue reading

Review: NAPOLEON’S RUN by Jonathan Spencer, published by Canelo

ISBN – (e-book) 978 1 80032 073 4 priced £1.99 For a man like me, raised on the classic Hornblower series, and later the Aubrey/Maturin series by Patrick O’Brien, there is a curious inevitability of every so often picking up a book and discovering it is, yawn, yet again a story about the British navy … Continue reading

Review: A COTSWOLD ORDEAL by Rebecca Tope

Published by Allison and Busby; ISBN: 9780749082680 paperback, price £7.99 No, I didn’t get this free – I bought it! I have to start with a personal disclosure – I have know Rebecca for many years, and she’s a good friend. But then again, any author who reviews books will very likely know the author … Continue reading

Review BUGLES AND A TIGER and THE ROAD PAST MANDALAY by John Masters

Review BUGLES AND A TIGER and THE ROAD PAST MANDALAY by John Masters, both published by Phoenix, part of Orion Books I am indebted today to “English Sailor”, who watched my YouTube video about John Masters (it’s here – https://youtu.be/mc-8fkmntRQ – if you want to see it), and suggested these two books. It is vanishingly … Continue reading