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Just RY

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  1. Finally fought my way through the Atonement. I think it was Volvican who wrote elsewhere that the book suffers from a poor ending. I agree - the beginning is too long, and the middle isn't up to much either. (Although, Part 2 was somewhat less painful than the beginning.) I'm thinking "Mills and Boon" with a bit of war thrown in for good measure. I've not seen the film yet - I have promised Mrs. Y that we would go and see it. For once, I hope the movie isn't true to the book!
  2. Oh well - I suppose that makes me a poor inspiration then!
  3. Trust me, I'm still overweight and middle-aged. "Motivation determines what you do."
  4. Now then - a bit of background about me. About 4 years ago, I decided to try an get a bit healthier by starting to jog a little bit. Over time, these 2 mile walk/jogs have led to running a couple of marathons, several half-marathons. I read about Karnazes after he had done a 350 mile continuous run. Now, I know how painful it is after 26.2, so I can't imagine the pain of 350. So, I read his book (in the book he doesn't go up to his 350 mile run - just a mere 200). What a fantastic, inspirational, motivational read. Second best auto-biography I have read (the best is totally unrelated - Papillon). I am certainly motivated to continue my marathon running - and who knows, I may try to go further. You can read more about Dean's crazy stuff (such as 50 marathons in 50 states in 50 days - yep, he is a nut) at http://www.ultramarathonman.com I don't think you have to be a runner to enjoy this book, his life story is pretty interesting. Big big thumbs up from RY, I really enjoyed it.
  5. I'm reading this now - I'm finding it tough going to be honest. Considering it is a book that covers decades, the first 50% only covers 4 days. I guess the rest is rushed! Why use a paragraph, when three chapters will do? Anyway, I am finally at "Part two" - I'm hoping it will pick up.
  6. Thanks Meg - I should post more often I suppose, I do check in from time to time though. One of the reasons I mentioned this particular book is that it could conceivably have been a 'prequel' to TCW (without the 'alternative' history bit of course, if that makes sense). Jan and Anna, the two main characters in Night of Flames could have been Zosia and Richard's grandparents or something.
  7. In 1939 the Germans invade Poland, setting off a rising storm of violence and destruction. For Anna and Jan Kopernik the loss is unimaginable. She is an assistant professor at a university in Krakow; he, an officer in the Polish cavalry. Separated by the war, they must find their own way in a world where everything they ever knew is gone. Anna’s father, a prominent Polish intellectual, is deported to a death camp, and Anna must flee to Belgium where she joins the Resistance. Meanwhile, Jan escapes with the battered remnants of the Polish army to Britain. When British intelligence asks him to return to Poland in an undercover mission to contact the Resistance, he seizes the chance to search for his missing wife. Through the long night of Nazi occupation, Anna, Jan, and ordinary people across Europe fight a covert war of sabotage and resistance against the overwhelming might of the German war machine. The struggle seems hopeless, but they are determined to take back what is theirs. A very good read - this came to me as a recommendation from Amazon in the form of "You've read this book before, therefore we recommend this" - I am glad they did. Well written, well researched from a new writer - from a period in history that fascinates me.
  8. Calling all Pillars of the Earth fans...... Just in case you didn't know, the sequel is now published, "World Without End" 'World Without End' takes place in the same town, Kingsbridge, and features the descendants of the 'Pillars' characters two centuries later. The cathedral and the priory are again at the centre of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge. But at the heart of the story is the greatest natural disaster ever to strike the human race: the plague known as the Black Death, which killed something like half the population of Europe in the fourteenth century. The people of the Middle Ages battled this lethal pestilence and survived – and, in doing so, laid the foundations of modern medicine. Just received the book on Friday, only a couple of chapters into it, but I just know I am going to love it.
  9. My mother has just read the book in the last couple of weeks - and concurs with myself and RR, she rated it as 'absolutely brilliant'. Delighted to read that someone else is going to give it a go.
  10. LOL! Z Is for Alibi - Mystery writer Sue Grafton embarks on her brand new series of novels featuring a dyslexic detective.
  11. "....It was like so hot yesterday and I was like oh my God, it's like so hot! The others like didn't care, they were like, whatvever." California teen-speak, coming to a place near you soon. Yuk.
  12. If I may make a suggestion - I have found that the tools on Amazon are handy to get you out of the rut. "Readers who bought this book also bought this book", or the "book lists" etc., - start with your favourite titles, and see where the surfing takes you. I have discovered a few superb books using this method - books I had never heard of, by authors I had never heard of. After a while you will have put together a list of new authors and new titles that you should like.
  13. Talking of The Pogues - their version of "The Band Played Waltzing Matilda" is also an awesome cover. Although I have no idea if it is better than the original, cos I am not sure I have heard it . . . . . . . And yes, Love will tear us apart, is by no means Joy Divisions best - that acolade, (in my not-so-music-snobbish-opinion) would go to "Eternal" on the fine LP, "Closer")
  14. Best call for the 'head-examiner' then RR. The Damned are one of my fave bands. I also prefer their version of "Alone again Or". So there. As for covers of "House of the Rising Sun", although I do like the original, I also like the cover by Muse. However, anyone who prefers No Doubt's version of 'It's My Life" really, and I mean really, does need their head examining . . . . . .
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