No longer outdoorsy

Friday, September 24, 2021 Permalink

Once upon a time I was an outdoorsy kinda person. As a kid I played in the yard with my brother and my friends. Growing up in a regional town I ran (and rode) around the streets after school and on weekends. My father in particular was a keen athlete so from a young age he had my brother and I in the yard hitting cricket or tennis balls high into the air for us to catch.

But at some point in the last 20 to 30 years I’ve become an indoors kinda-gal. It’s something I’ve been conscious of for a while but it really hit home earlier this week as I had someone coming by to give me a quote to get some trees trimmed and some weeds* sorted.

A day in the life…

Thursday, September 23, 2021 Permalink

Yesterday I got three job rejections. Well, I received nice emails telling me my applications hadn’t been successful. Two were very left-field so were expected and the third, well… it would have required me to relocate and didn’t pay very well so I wasn’t terribly worried.

It felt weird though, watching them come in throughout the day.

Book review: The Raffles Affair by Vicki Virtue

Thursday, September 23, 2021 Permalink

Who knew that Raffles Hotel in Singapore offered a residency program? Well, it does and New Zealand-born Vicki Virtue spent her Writer-in-Residence stint there on The Raffles Affair, featuring ex-MI6 agent Victoria West, now working independently for governments-in-need. Here however, Victoria is attending her close friend’s wedding in Singapore and called upon to do some old school sleuthing.

three-half-stars

Book review: The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary

Monday, September 20, 2021 Permalink

Beth O’Leary’s 2019 novel, The Flatshare, was one of my favourite books that year. I also enjoyed 2020’s The Switch.

The Road Trip didn’t seem to arrive with the fanfare of its predecessors but is still an enjoyable read. It unfolds in in two timelines. The present (which involves the very long and fraught road trip) and a period of a year or two in the recent past.

four-stars

Book review: Such a Quiet Place by Megan Miranda

Friday, September 17, 2021 Permalink

Such a Quiet Place is the fourth of US author, Megan Miranda’s novels I’ve read. It’s about the aftermath of murder in a (kinda) gated community, setting up an intriguing locked room-type mystery. Almost. To the relief of the locals someone was arrested and convicted of the crime. But there’s now the question of whether they were actually guilty.

three-half-stars

Book review: The Curlew’s Eye by Karen Manton

Thursday, September 16, 2021 Permalink

I’ve seen The Curlew’s Eye by Karen Manton billed as a crime thriller or a gothic mystery. In reality it’s less about a mystery to be solved or any present threat, and more about secrets and pasts that need to be faced up to.

Manton offers a strong and pervasive sense of place here. Lovers of flora, fauna and of nature in general will certainly adore her prose as she so richly describes life in outback Australia.

three-stars

Book review: The Five Year Plan by Jodi Gibson

Tuesday, September 14, 2021 Permalink

The Five Year Plan is the second book I’ve read by Jodi Gibson, who I know virtually through our shared love of reading and writing. Although this and her previous novel The Memories We Hide, ┬áveer a little more towards romance than my usual reading fodder I enjoyed both. They’re quintessential summer reads. They’re comforting…. offering some reassurance that all will be well in/with the world.

In some ways you can predict how things will ultimately end up but it’s the getting-there that I very much enjoyed here, particularly as Gibson predominantly sets this in Bari, in Italy’s Puglia region. I’ve never been but (very) coincidentally was in Italy this time three years ago.

three-half-stars

Book review: Freckles by Cecilia Ahern

Monday, September 6, 2021 Permalink

I hated my freckles as a kid. I used to joke about joining them together, like a dot-to-dot drawing. Unfortunately I didn’t have a cute smattering across my nose, rather they were clumped together in splotches. Of course in retrospect I realise I was far more conscious of them than anyone else around me.

The lead character of Cecilia Ahern’s latest novel is given the nickname Freckles for obvious reasons. Allegra doesn’t mind though. She loves her freckles and as a teenager drew links from one to another, mapping constellations.

four-stars

Air fryer newbie

Wednesday, September 1, 2021 Permalink

I won something recently which reminded me how long it is since I’ve won something. Of course I don’t actually enter much. Which I guess is why I’m not winning lotto and being able to retire and live a life of luxury. Or travel the globe. (Covid permitting.)

Those who follow me on social media may have seen the pictures and those who don’t… then why the bloody hell not? Just kidding. My social media feeds are as boring as batshit. I’m not a visual person so crap at Instagram. I’m only intermittently on Facebook so never comment or engage. I do however trawl Twitter a lot as it’s my social media platform of choice.

But back to my good fortune.