A Q & A with Rory Clements

Rory Clements is the author of Nucleus, published by Zaffre, hardback, £12.99. To celebrate the upcoming release of the second novel in the Tom Wilde series he has kindly agreed to stop by and do a Q & A. I have read the first book in the series  Corpus and you can find my thoughts on it here. To make it easier for you to follow, all my questions will be in blue and Rory Clements responses will be in bold. I’d just like to thank Rory for agreeing to doing this Q & A, and I’d also like to thank Emily for organising it. I hope you enjoy the Q & A.


Hi Rory, thank you for agreeing to do this Q & A with me.

I’ll jump straight into the questions:

NUCLEUS is your ninth novel, the second book in your Tom Wilde series, how do you feel with the publication date so close? Are you doing anything to celebrate?

I think I’ll have a glass or two of red wine.

This is probably quite a difficult question for me to ask but, how would you describe NUCLEUS in ten words?

Tom Wilde must save a child to protect the world.

Both of your series are historical novels, what drew you to writing a series set in Elizabethan England and the late 1930s?

They are set at times of extreme peril, when enemies send agents in to England and threaten invasion. They both feature the world’s oldest secret service, founded by Sir Francis Walsingham in Elizabeth’s reign and continued by MI5 and MI6 in more recent days. The perfect canvas for a series of thrillers.

Who or what was your inspiration for Professor Thomas Wilde?

I wanted an outsider – someone not impressed by the rather effete university types found in Brideshead Revisited. So Tom Wilde is half American, half Irish. He is inspired by two specific Americans: Conyers Read, an American historian who studied at Oxford and wrote the definitive biography of Sir Francis Walsingham and was later involved in setting up the Office of Strategic Services, the wartime forerunner of the CIA, and James Jesus Angleton, also American but a survivor of an English public school and later chief of CIA counter-intelligence. He was a friend of Kim Philby and, like everyone else, was betrayed by him. But Tom Wilde is neither of these two men, nor an amalgam of them. He is very much his own man.

Was there a particular reason that you chose Cambridge as the main setting for this series?

Cambridge in the 1930s was a political cauldron – and the breeding ground of the spies Burgess, Maclean, Philby and Blunt. It also produced the men who split the atom, developed radar, broke the Enigma code and started the computer age. And it just happens to be a gorgeous place within easy reach of my Norfolk home.

You worked for several newspapers; do you think that background has helped you with your writing?

Undoubtedly. In newspapers you quickly learn what makes a good story, because if you don’t you won’t last long. And then, of course, you have to tell that story well or face the editor’s wrath. It’s a shame so many modern ‘literary’ authors have lost the plot and forgotten their poor readers.

If you could give your younger self any writing tips what would they be?

Write, write, write…read, read, read. Expecting your debut novel to be brilliant is like someone picking up a tennis racket for the first time and going out to face Federer on Centre Court. Tennis isn’t easy, nor is writing. You need thousands of hours of practice. Stick with it and never stop trying to improve yourself.

Typically how much research do you do before you start writing?

Half a year of reading, travelling, experimenting and talking to the experts.

And to end on a lighter note what, if anything, are you currently reading?

I’m reading a mass of history books to help me with No.3 in the Tom Wilde series. The most recent novel I enjoyed was The Binding Song by Elodie Harper. It’s a very atmospheric thriller set in Norfolk. Highly recommended.

Nucleus by Rory Clements is out in hardback on the 25th January 2018. If you want to you can pre-order a copy on Waterstones, Foyles, Amazon UK, and The Book Depository.

Nucleus by Rory Clements

From the award-winning Sunday Times bestselling author of CORPUS

The eve of war: a secret so deadly, nothing and no one is safe

June 1939. England is partying like there is no tomorrow, gas masks at the ready. In Cambridge the May Balls are played out with a frantic intensity – but the good times won’t last… In Europe, the Nazis have invaded Czechoslovakia, and in Germany he persecution of the Jews is now so widespread that desperate Jewish parents send their children to safety in Britain aboard the Kindertransport. Closer to home, the IRA’s S-Plan bombing campaign has resulted in more than 100 terrorist outrages around England.

But perhaps the most far-reaching event of all goes largely unreported: in Germany, Otto Hahn has produced the first man-made fission and an atomic device is now a very real possibility. The Nazis set up the Uranverein group of physicists: its task is to build a superbomb. The German High Command is aware that British and US scientists are working on similar line. Cambridge’s Cavendish Laboratory is where the atom was split in 1932. Might the Cambridge men now win the race for a nuclear bomb? Hitler’s generals need to be sure they know all the Cavendish’s secrets. Only then will it be safe for Germany to wage war.

When one of the Cavendish’s finest brains is murdered, Professor Tom Wilde is once more drawn into an intrigue from which there seems no escape. In a conspiracy that stretches from Cambridge to Berlin and from Washington DC to the west coast of Ireland, he faces deadly forces that threaten the fate of the world.

Deposed by David Barbaree Q&A

Welcome to a post with a bit of a difference. Normally I just post reviews of books that I have read, so it has been a while since I posted a Q&A on my blog. I’d just like to say thank you to David Barbaree for agreeing to do this Q&A and to Emily of Bonnier Zaffre for arranging it. None of the questions or answers in this Q&A have spoilers. I hope you enjoy it.

Deposed by David Barbaree

More gripping than Game of Thrones and more ruthless than House of Cards – this a stunning new thriller of power, treachery and revenge

In a darkened cell, a brutally deposed dictator lies crippled – deprived of his power, his freedom – and his eyes.

On the edge of utter despair, his only companion is the young boy who brings him his meagre rations, a mere child who fears his own shadow. But to one who has held and lost the highest power, one thing alone is crystal clear: even emperors were mere children once.

Ten years later, the new ruler’s son watches uneasily over his father’s empire. Wherever he looks rebellion is festering, and those closest to him have turned traitor once before.

To this city in crisis comes a hugely wealthy senator from the very edge of the empire, a young and angry ward at his heels. He is witty but inscrutable, generous with his time and money to a leader in desperate need of a friend – and he wears a bandage over his blinded eyes.

The fallen emperor’s name is Nero.

But this isn’t his story.


Q&A

The Flutterby Room (TFR): Hey David, thanks for agreeing to stop by The Flutterby Room for a Q&A. DEPOSED is out on the 4 th May. It’s both your debut novel, and the first book in a trilogy. So my first question is, are you going to be doing anything to celebrate on publication day – or have you already celebrated?

David Barbaree (DB): Hi Becki. Thanks for having me.

It was exciting to land an agent and a publishing deal. But I think the biggest thrill was when I held the hardcopy in my hands. It finally felt real. After I’d admired it from every angle, my wife and I opened a bottle of wine to celebrate.

TFR: How would you describe DEPOSED in ten words?

DB: Fallen emperor, blinded and left for dead, seeks his revenge.

TFR: From the blurb we know that DEPOSED is set in Ancient Rome, was there anything in particular that drew you to that empire rather than Greece or Sparta?

DB: I’ve always been fascinated by ancient and medieval history. My love of Roman history in particular was cemented about ten years ago when I read John Julius Norwich’s series on the Byzantine Empire, which covers the later period of the Roman Empire. I worked backwards from there, to the earlier Imperial period and then the Republic. I’m not sure what it is about Rome that’s captured my attention. I’ve heard it said that it’s the combination of Rome’s similarities to our own time and the stark differences; how it’s both familiar and very foreign. I think that’s true. And everything is grander in Ancient Rome, the battles, the politics, the personalities. Also, the eight-year old in me will always love a good sword fight.

TFR: Nero is perhaps one of the more famous Roman Emperors, and although the blurb says DEPOSED isn’t his story, he was obviously a starting point for you. What drew you to him?

DB: I wanted to tell the story of a tyrant who, after he was deposed, blinded and left for dead, seeks his revenge. I’ve always loved the brutal protagonist the audience will reluctantly cheer for, like Walter White. Nero fit the bill. But he also had an artistic sensibility that didn’t really match the stories of the bloodthirsty hedonist. I think this made Nero more complicated and interesting than the commonly held view allows, and a compelling protagonist.

TFR: As this is an alternate history, was there a lot of research involved writing DEPOSED?

DB: You could call DEPOSED an alternative history. But I went to great lengths to exploit gaps in the historical record so that the story could be true. Obviously, it didn’t happen the way the book depicts, but the gaps were useful to me as a novelist. For example, the historical record from Vespasian’s reign (the emperor who eventually succeeded Nero) is sparse at best. I wanted the story to be not necessarily true but possible. So I spent a lot of time researching the period, and I did my best to make it an accurate, compelling recreation of Ancient Rome.

TFR: How long did it take you to write DEPOSED – was it something you just sat down and churned out, or did the idea come to you gradually?

DB: It took about 6 years in total. But at first I didn’t work on it fulltime. It began as a hobby. I’d re-write the opening chapters again and again, teaching myself to write. At the same time, I would research the period. Eventually it grew into an obsession. I wrote the last half of the book over about a three month span.

TFR: You’re a lawyer, a busy job by all accounts; did you find it difficult to find them time to write?

DB: Yes. But I found I could carve time out in the mornings before work. I didn’t mind getting up early because I enjoyed writing.

TFR: And my final question is what are you reading right now?

DB: I’m just finishing up Conclave by Robert Harris, which I’d highly recommend. It’s both a thriller and a fascinating procedural on how Pope’s are elected. Harris is exceptional at pacing a novel.


David Barbaree is a lawyer and a graduate of the Curtis Brown Creative Writing School. He lives in Toronto with his wife and daughter. His  debut novel DEPOSED is out on May 4th 2017. You can pre-order it on Amazon UK, Foyles or The Book Depository. Or add it to your Goodreads shelf.

Review: Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater (UK edition)

Title: Blue Lily, Lily Blue (The Raven Cycle, 3)
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Genre: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Publisher: Scholastic Children’s Books (21st October 2014)
Blurb:

For the first time in her life, Blue Sargent has found a place where she feels at home. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own and she is sure that this is where she belongs.

But certainties can unravel.

Visions can mislead.

And friends can betray.

The trick with found things is how easily they can be lost . . .

Rating: **** (4 stars)
Review:

BLUE LILY, LILY BLUE by Maggie Stiefvater is the third instalment of the fantastic The Raven Cycle; it is the penultimate book in the quartet. Blue Sargent and her Raven Boys – Gansey, Ronan, Adam and Noah – are still searching for Glendower, but the consequences of events in THE DREAM THIEVES, the second book in the cycle, play out in this book.

Continue reading

Review: Empire of Night by Kelley Armstrong

Empire of Night by Kelley Armstrong (UK edition)

Title: Empire of Night (Age of Legends, 2)
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Genre: Fantasy, Sword and Sorcery, Young Adult
Publisher: Atom (1st April 2015)
Blurb:

TWO SISTERS. AN EMPIRE ON THE BRINK OF WAR. AND A RUTHLESS TRAITOR PREPARED TO UNLEASH HELL UPON THE WORLD.

Moira and Ashyn have lost everything except each other. Betrayed, orphaned and kept under close guard at court, they are desperate to find help for the children of their village, kidnapped by a terrifying enemy.

But their quest is tangled in a much greater battle – for the fate of the empire itself. Torn apart by violence and intrigue, the sisters will learn a great deal about their powers and their potential. But they will also learn the heartbreak of betrayal and loss, as those they love reveal their dark secrets . . .

The second volume in the Age of Legends trilogy, Empire of Night is a breathtaking dark fantasy from international bestselling author Kelley Armstrong.

Rating: *** (3 stars)
Review:

EMPIRE OF NIGHT by Kelley Armstrong is the second book in her Age of Legends trilogy. The book continues the tale of twins Moira and Ashyn – Keeper and Seeker. After the events of SEA OF SHADOWS (review) Moira and Ashyn are kept at court, but they long to know the fate of the children from their village. Both sisters feel trapped, and want to help the children but war is brewing.

Continue reading

ICYMI Sunday 16 – Books and Bikes

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

The last couple of weeks have been okay. I really enjoyed watching Dolly Parton at Glastonbury on the TV, I think she put on a real good show. I also enjoyed watching the start of the Tour de France yesterday, it was nice to see all those people out to watch the race! I’m also really looking forward to being at YALC next weekend – I will only be there on the Saturday though!

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • An amusing comic for Philip Pullman fans here.
  • Boingboing has an article in which ‘C. S. Lewis explains why you should be proud to read children’s books’ which you can find here.
  • The New York Times has an article about the American Academy of Paediatrics new recommendation that children should be read aloud to from birth here.
  • Entertainment Weekly reimagines some literary classics as YA books here.
  • J. K. Rowling’s latest novel as Robert Galbraith THE SILKWORM sells 21k in its first week! You can find out more here.
  • The Guardian reports here that the filming of FANTASTIC BEASTS is to be shot in the UK.
  • The Boston Globe has a really hard Children’s book and YA lit quiz which you can have a go at here.

Not a lot of links this week, especially when you consider that the above is two weeks worth of links that have caught my attention. Saw the Philip Pullman strip, and I just had to share especially after reading the comments. I also thought that C. S. Lewis made some interesting points in the section quoted on Boingboing. I was also somewhat bemused by The New York Times article, but that was probably because my parents always read to me as a child and encouraged a love of reading – and I know not everyone does this, but I still think it’s weird. There are some really amazing re-imagined covers and I was happy to see that Rowling still did well sales wise despite the Amazon/Hachette dispute. The Boston Globe‘s book quiz was…interesting. There were quite a few books I hadn’t heard of and/or not read, but I still enjoyed trying to guess. I didn’t do particularly well, but then I didn’t expect to either once I saw the questions.

No books for me this week, but hopefully I’ll have a couple (or so) to show next week.

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

ICYMI Sunday 15- A Late Posting (Sorry)

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

This week has been a week of ups and downs. The weather has been nice and sunny, which I have liked from the relative safety of being inside but not really appreciated when I’ve ventured out in it. The hot weather has also left everyone a little grumpy, but hey-ho.

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • YA Interrobang has a list of ‘Ten Stories Inspired by Greek Mythology” which you can find here. I think they including some great books in their list.
  • S. E. Smith wrote an article on The Daily Dot titled ‘The real story behind the war over YA novels’ which you can find here. Smith puts forward the argument that there might be a reason why so many adults read YA fiction – that it might, actually, speak to them in a way that adult literature fails to.
  • In an article on The Guardian YA author CJ Daugherty asks the question ‘Should boys read boys?’. Daugherty responds to those who argue that boys should just read books written by men here.
  • The Guardian reports that ‘Sherlock lives in the public domain, US court rules in case of the heckled brand’. You can find the report here.
  • Sharleen Spiteri the leader singer of Texas talks about her love of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD by Harper Lee here and Human Rights lawyer Shami Chakrabarti talks about her love for the book here.
  • The Guardian readers share some of their bookshop memories here.
  • J. K. Rowling responds to a tweet about Lord Voldemort’s sex life (or lack thereof) here.
  • Jess of Jess Hearts Books, Vicky of Books, Biscuits and Tea, Carly of Writing from the Tub and Michelle of Fluttering Butterflies are hosting the first YALC Readathon. It runs from the 23rd to the 29th June. You can find out more and sign-up here.
  • Author Julie Kagawa talks about her new book TALON (which comes out later this year) here.

So the discussion of adults reading young adult books seems to have devolved into boys should read books by men because girls have cooties, obviously. Not really sure what I think about the US court ruling re SHERLOCK. I think there’s potential for the ruling to be problematic regarding future copyright cases. J. K. Rowling’s response to the comment on Twitter was brilliant!! I would have signed-up to the YALC Readathon as I desperately need to, but I don’t have any copies of the books to hand – I need to rectify that soon-ish.

And finally, I do actually have one book this week. Mum was super awesome and picked this book up for me.

  • THE SILKWORM (A CORMORAN STRIKE NOVEL, 2) by Robert Galbraith [Goodreads]

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

ICYMI Sunday 14 – The a “little bit” of news

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

This week has been quite a quiet one irl, but on the plus side I do seem to have my reading groove back! It’s been interesting seeing people’s BEA wrap-up posts and hauls over the last week or so, it looks like there are going to be some really awesome books to look forward to later this summer/autumn. I am finally nearing the end of my tbr pile, so there might be some book buying from me soon. Maybe.

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • Whispers of a Barefoot Medical Student talks about ‘Books as a Mirror for Attitudes towards Mental Health’ here. It’s a very interesting look at how books could be used as a medium to help lessen the stigma associated with Mental Health.
  • Leigh Bardugo author of the GRISHA series has released her UK tour dates and spots, which you can find here.
  • The Bookseller reports that the Foyles outlet at St Pancras International Station is to close on July 31st when the lease expires. You can find out more information here.
  • The Guardian reports than ‘Ebooks [are] on course to outsell printed editions in UK by 2018here.
  • Nick Ripatrazone posted a list of ’55 Thoughts for English Teachershere which is quite an interesting read if you like your literature.
  • Penguin Random House reveals what their new logo looks like here.
  • Helen Musselwhite is the overall winner of the V&A Illustration Awards. You can find the winning illustration here or read more about it here.
  • In response to a tweet by Richard Dawkins The Guardian asks ‘Are fairytales damaging to children?’ here. And this is my response kinda – it’s something I wrote re fairytales a while ago. Would love to hear your thoughts though.
  • Shelf Awareness has an interesting article about Amazon vs. Hachette with comments from Stephen Colbert, J. K. Rowling and many more. If you’re interested in reading their comments you can find it here.
  • C J Daugherty talks on The Book Seller about the stigma of writing YA and how she thinks UK booksellers could help change that here.
  • Dianna Anderson wrote an article titled ‘Why Criticizing Young Adult Fiction is Sexist’ in which she responds to Ruth Graham’s article in Slate, and puts forward the suggestion that YA literature is just as important as adult literature and just as diverse. You can read her article for yourself here.
  • The Guardian asked some authors to pick what books they would choose for their GCSE set texts, which resulted in some interesting choices. Hilary Mantel’s response in particular is an interesting one. You can find the authors and their picks here.
  • Alexandra Petri also responds to the criticism of YA in the article ‘Ashamed of reading YA? The fault lies not in our stars but in our stores’ which you can read here.
  • On a slightly lighter note, BuzzFeed has a brilliant post about people’s reactions to watching THE FAULT IN OUR STARS film titled ‘Everybody Who Saw “The Fault In Our Stars” Really Hates John Green Now’ which you can find here.
  • The Guardian has a timelapse video that shows the relocation of Foyles’ flagship bookshop (and you get a sneak peek inside the new store). You can find the video here.
  • Orli Vogt-Vincent asks if ‘LGBT relationships [are] the last taboo for teen fiction?’ You can read what she has to say and (if you want) respond here.

So yeah, as you can see there was quite a lot going on in the book blog/vlog sphere this week.

I think the furore over whether it’s “right” if adults read ya fiction is a tad disappointing. I haven’t actually read the article (nor linked to it) because I don’t want to give it any hits, and also because I’m of the opinion that it’s a waste of my time – obviously I disagree. However, some of the responses (which I have included) are interesting and raise some interesting questions.

No books for me this week.

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

ICYMI Sunday 13 – The One Where I’m On Time?!

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

This week I will probably be late in responding to comments as I’ll be out celebrating my parents’ birthdays. It’s been a while since I’ve managed to get an ICYMI Sunday post up because of bad timing on my part – Mondays keep creeping up on me! – so fingers crossed this post will be out on time.

Hope you’ve all had a good week.

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • LeVar Burton has launched a Kickstarter project to ‘Bring Back Reading Rainbow for Ever Child, Everywhere.’ For more info and how to help click here.
  • Paralympian Ellie Simmonds will be signing copies of her new book ELLIE’S MAGIC BAKERY at the Birmingham New Street Waterstones on Saturday 7th June at 12pm. Click here for more info.
  • Don’t forget that the UK’s first ever Young Adult Literature Convention (YALC) is being held in conjunction with the London Film and Comic Con on 12th and 13th July. You can book tickets and find out more here.
  • Hannah Gómez talks about ‘realistic’[1] adoption in Young Adult literature here.
  • The branch of Foyles Bookshop at 113-119 Charing Cross Road officially closed for the final time on Saturday at 7pm. It is moving down the road to 107 Charing Cross Road and a new flagship store. To celebrate this they are holding a 3 week Grand Opening Festival from 11th June to 5th of Julyclick here for more info.
  • Reading Groups For Everyone is ‘Seeking this year’s Hidden Gems for National Reading Group Day’. You can find out which books and authors have been nominated and vote for your favourite here.
  • On Tor.com Greg Ruth discusses ‘Why Horror is Good For You (and Even Better for Your Kids)’ in which he talks about how horror stories can help us understand the world around us. You can read his article here.

[1] I added the ‘realistic’ to the post because in the comments to the piece Gómez talks about how the book titles she focuses on in her piece are what she considers realistic fiction and that there are more books out there if the definition of adoption is broadened.

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I’m sad that the old Foyles bookstore has finally closed, but at the same time I’m looking forward to having a chance to visit their new one. I’m also toying with the idea of going to YALC but I’m not sure which day to go on as there are some wonderful authors on both days!

No books for me this week.

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

ICYMI Sunday 12 – The one that’s on the final day of Bout of Books 10!

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

So this week I am (hopefully) on time with posting this. I’m writing it Saturday night anyway, so hopefully it will post itself. I’m crossing my fingers that it does anyway.

This week has been jam-packed full of Bout of Books 10, and to be honest I am VERY pleased with my progress. I’ve also managed to not stress myself about it this time around, which yay! 😀 Cannot believe that today is the final day, but hopefully it will be a good one.

Hope you’ve all had a good week.

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • If you use BookLikes please be aware that the site will be down for a couple of hours on Thursday May 22nd AND some of the BookLikes team will be attending BEA. For more info on both the downtime and the BEA attendance click here.
  • The Second Summer Ninja Book Swap is officially open! Sign-ups are open until Sunday May 25th, and all packages must be sent by Monday June 30th. If you’re interested in taking part you can sign-up here.
  • Neil Gaiman and Georgina Chapman are developing a storytelling project that aims to highlight the Syrian refugee crisis. For more information click here.
  • Julie Kagawa is giving away a signed UK copy of THE FOREVER SONG here.
  • Waterstones Piccadilly is holding ‘An evening with Judy Blume’ in June 3rd at 6.30pm. You can buy tickets here (tickets are £5 or £3 with a Waterstones card).
  • The Guardian’s Children’s Books has a list of what they consider to be the best LGBT books for children, teenagers and YA here.

I haven’t got a lot of news this week, mainly because I have been taking part in Bout of Books. If you think I’ve missed anything important please let me know in the comments.

No books for me this week.

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D

ICYMI Sunday 11

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ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) Sunday is a new meme that I am planning to feature on the blog every week. It is based on the Sunday Post  which is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, which was in turn inspired in part by the In My Mailbox meme. Basically, it allows me to let you know what went on the blog this week and anything interesting that is going on. It will also allow me to showcase any books I receive like the Showcase Sunday which is hosted by Vicky at Books, Biscuits, and Tea.

Running late getting this up seems to be becoming a habit on my part. Whoops.

Had a great Bank Holiday Monday this week; more time spent with my wonderful parents. Apart from that this week has been very quite, although I have been lacking in any motivation. Hopefully taking part in Bout of Books 10 next week will change that (more on that later)

On the blog the last couple of weeks:

What else is going on?

  • Steve Berman has an article on SALON titled ‘The slow, tragic death of the LGBT publishing industry’ which you can read here. In his article he discusses the closure of Giovanni’s Room in Philadelphia, which is “the oldest and possibly largest LGBT bookstore” in the US.
  • Adam Gopnik of The New Yorker talks about ‘The strange triumph of “The Little Prince”’ here.
  • The Guardian has a poll asking ‘How do you organise your home library?’ in response to a survey by Lovereading which found that “39% of British readers organise their shelves completely randomly”. You can find the full article and take part in the poll (there’s just 1 day left) here.
  • BuzzFeed has done a list of ’12 Literary Spots in London That Every Book Lover Needs To Visit’ which you can find here. Personally, I think they’ve missed a good one – the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens.
  • The Spring edition of the Subterranean Press Magazine is out, and you can find it here. It includes a story by Kelley Armstrong.
  • Bout of Books 10 starts on Monday! If you haven’t already, you can still sign-up here OR if you just want more info you can find the official blog here.
  • According to The Guardian, ‘Superheroes conquer the literary novel’ – you can read the article here.
  • The winners of the 2013 Agatha Awards, as well as a list of nominees can be found here.
  • On Cosmopolitan‘s website John Green asks ‘Can You Get Too Old For YA Novels?’ – you can read the article here.
  • If you’re not lucky enough to receive an ARC copy of Julie Kagawa’s new novel TALON you can check out the cool inside here.
  • Amazon and Hachette’s dispute over retail terms has gone public – you can find out more here.

Some interesting articles this week. Personally, I think the SALON article is a bit premature – I hadn’t actually heard of Giovanni’s Room until I came across the article. The article about how home libraries are organised was an interesting one – I order mine alphabetically by author, so I can find books easily. The literary spots in London list was an interesting one, but I was a little sad to see no Peter Pan statue.

No books for me this week.

I would love to hear what you’ve been up to this week and what books, if any, you’ve got so please leave me a link in the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by :D