At the end of 2018 would love to hear your highs of the year.
After much consideration I must give my book of the year to Eleanor Oliphant by Gail Honeyman - a book that appeals to all ages and genders.
My favourite TV series was Killing Eve which you can still watch ( voted top by most critics). https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p06kbg8t/killing-eve-series-1-1-nice-face
My favourite film was Black Panther and I'm not normally a super hero movie fan.
My favourite album was Low - Double Negative. Always loved them but took me awhile
By Rod Beecham
Dear BGO Members,
I write to draw your attention to my eBook, ‘The Evidence of Our Senses’: Language, Belief and Britain’s Great War. The book is the product of a student of English literature whose interest, in postgraduate years, turned more specifically to history and the relationships between language, patterns of thought and decision-making. The book examines the confection of a British sense of national identity during the second half of the nineteenth century and relates this to the illogicality and irrationality of the British decision to intervene in the European war that broke out in 1914. It examines the language of English poetry of the war, avoiding the sterile labels of ‘pro-‘ and ‘anti-‘ war verse. It gives the most thorough account to date of Siegfried Sassoon’s 1917 protest against the war’s continuation, demonstrating that the incoherence of that protest is attributable to the incoherence of the war itself (i.e. there was nothing identifiable against which to protest). It reviews British military conduct of the war, demonstrating that the shortcomings of senior British commanders are attributable to their subscription to the meretricious value-system confected in the nineteenth century. It reviews the Treaty of Versailles, confirming both that the Treaty was an improvisation and that the tenets of economic orthodoxy are fundamentally incompatible with a world-view that accepts the possibility of war. It reviews the factitious ‘war-books’ controversy of 1930 and indicates that latter-day attempts to attribute negative British perceptions of the First World War to the influence of a handful of literary works are recrudescences of the mind-set that created the war itself. In this sense, the book is an allegory of the contemporary Zeitgeist. An earlier version of Chapter One appeared as, ‘Confecting a British Identity’, in The New Nationalism and the First World War, ed. Lawrence Rosenthal and Vesna Rodic (Basingstoke and New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), pp. 19-46. An earlier version of Chapter Three was delivered as the paper, ‘Gesture and experience in “patriotic” and “anti-war” poetry’, at the English Association Conference, ‘British Poetry of the First World War’, at Wadham College, Oxford in September 2014. An earlier version of Chapter Seven appeared as, ‘Fiction and Memoir of Britain’s Great War: disillusioned or disparate?’, in the European Review of History: Revue européenne d’histoire, 22:5, 791-813. In an age of ‘fake news’ and labyrinthine relativism, I believe my book is extremely important. At the very least, it could start a discussion about the nature of truth and how we are to establish it. I think that is a discussion we need to have.
I hope I have not committed a solecism by advertising my work here. Of course, I hope that people will be interested in my book, but I understand that advertisements can be irritating!
The Sweet Spot, by Anneli Lort, caught my eye recently, during the excitement of The Open Championship, and it's quick ascent into the top 10 of the sports fiction chart, but it is, undeniably, a romance novel.
The Sweet Spot tells the tale of strong female lead, Olivia, who is recovering from an unhealthy relationship and an unforgiving heartache. She moves out of busy London to heal in the countryside, taking a career opportunity to ghostwrite a globally famous, golfing legend's autobiography, Sebastian.
The setting of Appleton Vale is so beautifully described that this book could truly heal anybody's heartache with its idyllic nature, and the struggles of being in a new place and overcoming a bad relationship are well-portrayed. The characters of this romance novel are wonderfully developed, their quirks, histories, motives and weaknesses outlined early on. Sexy Sebastian is witty and alluring, providing Olivia exactly the distraction she needs, until his feelings for her begin to overcome them both.
Whether you're interested in golf or not, I feel that the tension and competitive narrative of the book, as it develops, is a great pace changer and makes a great page-turner. I could not put the book down! If you're looking for a peaceful feel-good setting with a romantic twist, and like authors such as Jilly Cooper and Joanna Trollope, you'll love this! And, if you can't get enough, I hear it's a series and book 2 is on the way!
Hopefully this is the right place to ask as there were not many other threads in relation to this.
I really like history. I am going to read some non-fiction books (that can be interesting), but I have a feeling that Historical fictionbooks are more fun and gripping? More of a 'cant put it down' book collection as opposed to non-fiction (although I am most likely wrong). There are so many historical fiction books out there that look great (lots of reviews), such as 'Wars of the Roses' by Conn Iggulden, ones by Bernard Cornwell (more medieval). How does one find the great books to read, that are set in different eras? I have no knowledge of the good ones, so is there a list I can be recommended to read as I am new to this genre.