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Royal families

Up to now I have been collecting Edwardian postcards based on a message on the reverse of the card, I don’t trust the authenticity of a card unless it has been clearly postmarked plus I love reading the message and maybe doing some research on the people mentioned.

I am not much bothered by the image on the front although I have collected cards of places and buildings local to me and Edwardian actresses. However I now have a new interest in Royalty of the period.

I saw this card for sale

King George V with his children

It grabbed me straight away because I have always been a life long Royalist. This depicts King George V with four of his children David (Edward VIII), Albert (George VI), Mary and Henry. I love the poses of the little Princes and Princess, its a perfect image.

It made me go searching on ebay for more (always a costly business) and I came across this one

The Czarewitch of Russia

It shows the youngest child of the Tsar of Russia, one of the Romanovs who were sadly massacred in 1918. I have always been really interested in their story as my Grandfather was involved in the Russian Revolution in a small way. He went to Russia with the North Russian Expeditionary Force in late 1918 to help shore up the allies fighting the Bolsheviks there.
There are quite a few great postcards out there but the prices being asked are a bit too high for me plus most of them weren’t postally used which for me means its a waste of money in case they are later reproductions.
I shall just have to keep my eyes open at bootfairs for some.

Learning to read Manga

Hey guys, two posts in one day, i’m spoiling you!

Just had to share my books which just arrived.

Manga and short stories

Yes, I’m getting into Manga. This could be very bad as apparently most of these books come in series of as many as 50 books! and they don’t come cheap so it will take me many millennia to read them all but what the heck eh?

I really wanted to get Orange also by Ichigo Takano but Volume 1 is sold out everywhere so I thought id give this series a go instead.  It will take some getting used to, to read the book backwards and right to left on each page!

  Brain exploding right now!

And as for Above Sugar Hill by Linda Mannheim this was the quickest most impulsive buy of my life!  I literally saw it on Twitter, fell in love with the cover, read a few pages via Amazon and bought it all within 10 minutes. I’d never even heard of book or author before!  I am truly a lost cause.

currently reading

Right now i’m moving between 3 books

Prose poetry, memoir and non fiction

3 books whose genre I don’t normally read much. I do love to mix it up a bit don’t I?

I bought both Poet X and Sick but was kindly sent The Friendship Cure from Duckworth Books after I requested a copy for review.  I’m highlighting and page tabbing The Friendship Cure. Its got so many interesting things to say.

I’m looking forward to postie coming today, hopefully with my graphic novel for review and maybe a book all the way from Canada! Yes a publisher in Canada has agreed to send me a copy of The Fairy Tale Museum which is so kind of them.

Plus I also have another two books coming that I’ve bought. A book of short stories and my first Manga! 

Cant wait!

Sci Fi & Fantasy mini book haul

Yes I bought more books!

Yes I am on a Sci Fi/Fantasy kick right now!

Yes one of them is a hardback copy which I try to avoid buying at all cost! But can you blame me, its bloody stonkingly gorgeous, don’t you agree?

If this post is quite short its because we in the UK are currently suffering a massive heatwave and I am literally a puddle of goo on the floor so, you’ll excuse me wont you if I don’t spend too long typing on a warm laptop!

I bought the Jy Yang book because virtually everyone on BookTube had hauled it and raved about it and the opening chapter so amazing so I have high hopes for this.

The Marie Lu and Jason Segel books just speak for themselves really, I loved Ready Player One (well what I read of it which was quite a bit) and these are meant to be very similar but I’m sure have a style of their own at the same time.

The Becky Chambers’ book was one I just couldn’t ignore despite it being a hardback. I am currently reading her first book, The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and also have her second book to read too so now I can indulge myself with all this gorgeous Sci Fi.

Don’t they make such a beautiful line up?



Virginia Woolf through the Census – Part 1

I have long been fascinated by all things to do with Virginia Woolf. It began sometime in the 1980’s when whilst spending the weekend with a cousin in Sussex she took us to visit Monks House in Rodmell.

Virginia’s home there for many years.  It was the first i’d heard of her and it began a lifelong love of all things to do with her and the Bloomsbury set.

So I couldn’t resist doing a bit of research for myself using the census returns and any other records available of her or the rest of the Bloomsbury group.

Adeline Virginia Stephen was born in 1882 so I can use the 1891-1901 and 1911  census returns to find her.

In the 1891 census she is aged 9 and living at 22 Hyde Park Gate, Kensington with her parents, siblings and step siblings.

She is listed as Adeline V Stephen as she is in most documents online.

Here she is in the 1901 census. Still at same address but her father is listed as a widow after her mother died in 1895 and she famously had a breakdown.

Looking at the 1911 census we see she is living with her brother Adrian at 29 Fitzroy Square.

This just a year or so before she married Leonard Woolf.

In my next post about Virginia I will share the few books I own of her writing, but as its just arrived today I thought i’d share this new one.

The Hours by Michael Cunningham

I think this is such a beautiful cover, don’t you?

Keep an eye on this blog for more posts about Virginia Woolf very soon.




Graphic novel mini reviews

I’ve been on a bit of a graphic novel kick lately so here are two novels I can definitely recommend you pick up if you are giving this genre a try too.

Volume 1 of Alex + Ada

A soon as I saw this on book tube I knew I had to have it. The artwork is so beautiful. Its crisp, clear, minimal and very evocative. The colours are soft and muted but stand out well and the story is quite sweet in places. I think there are another 2 volumes out by now, i’m not sure if i’ll continue reading the series mainly because they are so expensive but maybe as a treat or a gift one time.

Everyone’s a aliebn when ur a aliebn too

This is such a sweet, sweet little book. Its a quick read and can be read in one sitting but if you take your time to really take in the story on each page you’ll get more out of it for sure.

I can understand why graphic novels are as pricey as they are, I mean just look at the hard work that goes into the artwork alone!  But still they are more of a treat to myself or a Christmas/Birthday gift.


I have bookmail!

This absolutely beautiful book arrived today from Hodder Childrens. I saw it on Twitter the other day and couldn’t resist requesting a copy to review.

Its called The Survival Game and its written by Nicky Singer.

Its a paperback proof but it has the most original vellum like cover or dust jacket! look here it is without the cover

and the back is just as lovely

Its published in UK on 28th July by Hodder

It not only wins in the looks department but the synopsis and a few paragraphs i have read of it make it a likely winner in the writing department too.

I’m so excited to read this and it has gone straight into the top rows of my TBR


Books they made me buy

I want to do a kind of books that BookTube made me buy or just books that I had to have because of all the hype around them and I didn’t wanna miss out!

Phew, what a mouthful!

I’ll split it into several posts as there are loads over the months/years but I’ll stick to the best and most exciting ones.

There’s quite a mix of genres here.

I felt compelled to buy Circe by Madeline Miller because I enjoyed what I’ve read so far of The Song of Achilles. I actually requested proof copies no less than 4 times but never heard a thing so ended up buying it in hardback even though I hate a hardback! This is the power of wanting to be a part of the conversation and just needing to own the book.

I haven’t read it yet and probably won’t for a while (shakes head at own foolishness)

I bought the Alice Oseman book as everyone says her books are so good but I’ve never seen anything special in her writing and this doesn’t sound any better really. In fact its very similar to Songs About a Girl by Chris Russell with a couple of diverse characters to make it seem like an original work.

The Becky Albertalli books were bought because I’d seen Simon all over social media but never fancied it until Leah came out and the cover is just adorable so I had to check them out. I’m halfway through Simon and it’s so so good! I guess it will teach me not to pre judge books so much in the future eh?

And you couldn’t get much further away from the previous YA books than with Michel Faber’s The Crimson Petal and The White! It’s so unusually written as the narrator takes you on the journey with him which is a way of writing I’ve not encountered before. It’s a chunker though so will most likely take me months to get through but it’s a real treat nonetheless.

So those are just a small sample of books I felt pressured to buy either because they are all over social media or a booktuber ‘sold it to me’ rather too well, damn them!

Surprise book post

Yes I had a nice surprise when this arrived yesterday. I was sent the first book years back but didn’t get on with it. This may be better, who knows and you can’t fault that cover! Woo it’s beautiful!

An Ocean of Minutes by Thea Lim

I was kindly sent this by Quercus books after I requested a copy in exchange for an honest review.

The premise sounds so original and fantastic and i couldnt wait to get round to reading it.

Oh how disappointed I was though.

She has come up with such a cool and novel storyline. I just adore anything with time travel in and initially it did feel a bit like the Time Travellers Wife but she makes it very hard going trying to understand her concept. Its really not explained very clearly at all. Its very airy fairy in its writing style and she committed something which is one of my biggest bugbears with authors; she used a word which frankly i’d never heard in my life and actually had to split apart to read it!

Ive always said that if an author uses a long, obscure word that makes me break off from the narrative to look it up in a dictionary then they have already lost me!  I mean who has heard of synecdochical?

Hopefully it may disappear before the final published version.

It all felt a bit dreary to be honest and I couldnt feel anything for the main character, she just wasnt 3D enough for me.

I couldnt finish it sadly. I have loads of books to read for pleasure and review and cant waste my time on something that doesnt gel with me.


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