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About Barblue

  • Birthday 15/06/1943


  • Biography
    Love Shakespeare, London and Football, but not necessarily in that order
  • Location
  • Interests
    Reading, writing, watching sports
  • How did you hear about this site?
    Through my local library

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  • Location
    East Lancashire

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  1. I know I have not been here often in the recent past, but I have been a member for so long I would really miss it not being here. I do hope that it continues and will try and support it more often.
  2. I still think of David often. He always had such wise words to impart and some of them have stayed with me and probably always will.
  3. I have been looking forward to reading this for weeks, and finally got round to it this weekend. Bottom line; I loved this book. The only down side is that it goes too quickly and was impossible to put down, keeping me awake until 1 and 2 in the morning because I just had to read another chapter. It is a crime book; there are a few murders; you would expect that from the title. But it is more than that in as much as it is set in a retirement complex and the characters living in that retirement village are beautifully written with all the old eccentricities you would expect of the elderly, but also with hidden pasts and expertise that lift them off the page. Other characters are written with the same light hand that does not diminish their acts or duties, but moves the story along at an amazing pace.. There are many twists and turns that leave the reader both laughing, amazed, distraught, frustrated and bewildered, right to the end. It is a book of delights. I laughed out loud often and was sorry when the book came to an end. True escapism. Can't wait for book 2.
  4. Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood, my bedtime book Let's do it: the Authorised Biography of Victoria Wood by Jasper Rees, which is my daytime book.
  5. I have just re-read these posts because I am half-way through re-reading this book. It is many years since I first read it and to be honest I didn't really like the book. My son did and I thought I must have missed something so have wanted to re-read for that reason. One of the things that has hit home with me is the way disease was dispersed across the world by the scientific companies to boost their profits with a cure. In the year of Covid19, this was so very chilling. I am looking forward to finishing the book, most of which I do not remember reading before. Probably old age accounts for that.
  6. As you may remember Momac, I live in the North West of England and we are suffering a resurgence of infections. At the moment we have been stopped visiting neighbours either in house or garden. They still keep the pubs and restaurants open though, but it is very carefully controlled. We have eaten out recently, and are impressed with all the precautions. In fact I had my eyes tested today and it was very carefully controlled there too. Sadly though we cannot travel out of our area to meet family, so we cannot visit our son in Manchester now, who is under the same laws of restriction, or stay with our son in Hampshire. Who knows how long this will be the case, but somehow we have to soldier on. Trust you are keeping well. You seem to be from your posts.
  7. When I think how quickly the time has gone since the start of this pandemic - and for us it has even if we are fed up with all the difficulties - then the C time is not that far off. In fact I was only talking to Mr.B at the weekend about it.
  8. This book is set in Blackburn, Lancashire, an old mill town, where I live. Because of this I can relate to a lot of the geography that is noted in the book so perhaps that adds to my understanding of the locations. It is the first of a trilogy. The book begins with Jennet and Titus having to move into the town from the surrounding countryside because the mills were becoming mechanized and taking work away from the home spinners and weavers. I found the characters believable and enjoyed the pace of the writing. It was a page-turner, which I found a real pleasure to read as during this pandemic period reading has not been easy for me. Having related the above, I have to tell you that I know the author. She has been writing for years and published other books, but I believe this is the first works that have been picked up by the publishers. I was worried that I would not like this book and wondered how I would be able to comment on it not just here, but to her too. I really enjoyed this absorbing read.
  9. Having read a few of the recent posts here, I have to say that first of all I envy those who have been able to bury themselves in books. I did read The Mirror and the Light, the last in the Mantel trilogy, but the weight prevented me from reading huge chunks, so it became a long and laborious affair. I'm glad I have read it though because I enjoyed the whole trilogy and seeing history through Mantel's interpretation of Cromwell's eyes. Unusual and unique. Apart from that, I have hardly read anything. I just don't be able to concentrate for long. I have, however, become a jigsaw addict. Apart from all the de-cluttering in our house over the first 4 to 6 weeks of lockdown, life has settled into another kind of routine. We are lucky, because we have a dance floor in our little barn and so have the facility to practice our steps. In fact we have not done that much. Once we had finished throwing out all our unwanted stuff, we did go back to dancing to find that we had forgotten an awful lot of steps. Since then we have tried to practice as least once a week, but things are still a little rusty. Also, it is so sad that we cannot have friends over to share our dancing and until that is possible, the joy of dancing is only half there. Yesterday, we decided we had enough of isolating and went out for lunch at our favourite fish and chip restaurant. Staff were masked and tables set apart and it was really lovely. Even though the numbers of infections in my area are high, we felt we had to do something 'normal' for once.
  10. Well, I finally finished reading this third book in the trilogy, but to be honest, I could have done with some severe editing of the narrative. Yes, it was informative. Yes, it did make the mores of the time graphic, but I think there was a little too much emphasis on Cromwell's past, which we all knew very well from the first two books, and some excessive descriptions of everyday events that became very repetitious. Perhaps some of this negativity is due to the size of the book, which made it difficult for me because it is so heavy. As a consequenc3e I was not able to hold it for long. Because of this fact also, I could not read huge chunks of the book as I might have done otherwise. However, it was a great ending to the trilogy in terms of winding down Cromwell's popularity and influence as he aged and so did King Henry. As a whole, the trilogy is a masterpiece in terms of viewing a version of history through the eyes of Cromwell and for that reason I loved it.
  11. I loved reading Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies, but I am finding The Mirror and the Light far harder going than the first two. I regret the fact that we are now told when Cromwell is speaking, which we were not in Wolf Hall. It was not easy to pick this up at first, but once I did, I felt more 'with' Cromwell. In this book, I find the indication of Cromwell speaking slows the read, which in turn makes my reading of the novel much slower than the other two. In fact I have been reading it almost since the start of the pandemic and still have a little way to go. Having said all that, I have really enjoyed seeing the world through Cromwell's eyes. I have loved the dialogue because it brings it down to the every-day more often than not and through the dialogue the other characters have shone and evolved. I will finish it, but it may take another week or so.
  12. Thanks Meg. Its great to see so many familiar 'faces'. Sad to say we do not go to football matches now. Long story, but we have moved on and our main passion now is dancing. Sadly too, that has been curtailed and we wonder whether we will every get back to the wonderful social dancing scene we once had. Trust you are well and still enjoying life to the full.
  13. Just saying hello to all my old friends and new members of BGO, since I have not been here for some time now. I really don't know why, but that's the way life has gone. I have been using Amazon through this site even though I have not contributed to the site generally and I suppose as I was here again today, I decided to take a browse through. It has been wonderful to see so many lovely names I remember so well. I do hope to keep in touch again now I have taken this plunge.
  14. Oops! I should be more patient. After 5 minutes the .co.uk banner has appeared. Sorry to be a nuisance.
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