Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

The Murder at the Vicarage

Monday, August 24th, 2020 | Books

The Murder at the Vicarage is a mystery novel by Agatha Christie. It is the first one I have read to feature Miss Marple.

I have heard plenty of jokes about the death rate in St Mary Mead and I do wonder how exactly so many novels will be spun out on the topic. Maybe she travels? Anyway, I enjoyed the book.

Murder on the Orient Express

Sunday, August 23rd, 2020 | Books

Murder on the Orient Express is a mystery novel by Agatha Christie. It features Hercule Poirot and revolves around a passenger being murdered on the famous train that Poirot happens to be travelling on.

It has a nice twist (spoilers: there’s a twist!) although not quite as intriguing as And Then There Were None. I was not in love with Poirot as a character initially but I have since warmed to him. Overall, an enjoyable read.

And Then There Were None

Saturday, August 22nd, 2020 | Books

And Then There Were None is a mystery novel by Agatha Christie. It was another punt on my unused Audible credits as recommended by Elina. It was the first Christie novel I have read and does without her two famous characters, Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot.

I really enjoyed it. In many ways, maybe I should not have started with such a good Christie novel as it has massively set my expectations for the other books I am reading.

Blood of Elves

Friday, August 21st, 2020 | Books

Blood of Elves is a fantasy fiction book by Andrzej Sapkowski. It is the first in the Witcher series and having a bunch of Audible credits I took a punt and bought the first three. I did not pay off massively, but it was an enjoyable read.

The audio is quiet which is annoying as I have to listen to it at maximum volume. The story is okay, but not as gripping as A Song of Ice and Fire which is the nearest thing I could describe to to in my admittedly limited reading of fantasy.

The Roasting Tin

Tuesday, August 18th, 2020 | Books, Food

The Roasting Tin is a cookbook by Rukmini Iyer. It promises “simple one-dish dinners” and it delivers. I like it. Stick a bunch of ingredients in a roasting tin, stick it in the oven and in an hour or two you will have nice food. Not much messing around and nice results.

There is optimum roasting time. The short roasts were a bit dull, and I didn’t get great results from the really long roasts which I think come out better if you slow cook them. But the range of an hour or so seems to be the sweet spot for this book. I recommend the five-spice pork chops and smokey sausage supper, both of which make excellent and easy to prepare meals.

Mindful Running

Monday, August 17th, 2020 | Books

Mindful Running: How Meditative Running can Improve Performance and Make you a Happier, More Fulfilled Person is a book by Mackenzie L. Havey.

It’s a nice read. Nothing suer-new or much I did not know, but if you don’t practice mindfulness already or use it in your running, this would be a recommended read.

It was also a good reminder of what Havey calls our “True North Goal”. The thing that keeps us going regardless of what races are coming up. For many of us, it will be to stay on top of our physical and mental health, to challenge ourselves, to show ourselves we are stronger than we thought. A timely reminder given almost all of the races in 2020 are cancelled.

The Prison Doctor

Sunday, August 16th, 2020 | Books

The Prison Doctor is a book by Dr Amanda Brown. It is an autobiography (or maybe a biography given there is a co-author, although it is written in the first person) that discusses her times working in prisons.

After a spat over the new GP contract, she leaves per practice and goes to work in a young offenders prison, Wormwood Scrubs and later a women’s prison. It’s an okay read. Well written.

Quicksilver

Saturday, August 15th, 2020 | Books

Quicksilver is a historical novel by Neal Stephenson. It is part of the The Baroque Cycle, although I don’t really know what that is.

It jumps around which kept things interesting. The pace differs. Lots of details about the ships, not much about the plague or the fire. Overall, it was enjoyable, and I will probably end up reading more of the series.

Gotta Get Theroux This

Thursday, August 13th, 2020 | Books

Gotta Get Theroux This is an autobiography by Louis Theroux. It was always going to be a half-decent read as Louis is such a good storyteller. Although, he would probably be one of the first to admit that his documentaries are the result of a team of people that he happens to be the face of.

I didn’t know much about Theroux’s persona life. For example, I did not realise that he started by working with Michael Moore. I knew he had a family, but to hear his dreary tales about domestic life was a nice reminder that even rockstars have to do some chores.

Some documentaries get a lot of time. Others don’t get any. As may be expected, there is a lot about Jimmy Savile in the book. The audiobook includes a whole bonus chapter about “Jimmy Savile deniers” have some have dubbed them.

Overall, a good read.

Out of Orange

Tuesday, August 11th, 2020 | Books

Out of Orange is an autobiography by Cleary Wolters, the real-life inspiration for Orange is the New Black‘s Alex Vause.

Although the book makes reference to prison, there is very little about prison in it. It’s mostly about the international drug trade and her involvement in it. Nor does Piper feature much in the story. It probably won’t surprise too many people that the TV show doesn’t draw much from reality.

The book is a slow start and I wondered whether to continue. But I thought I would give it one last chance on a long training session and it picked up as it got into the details. It was an okay read; not one of my favourites.