This is my review of the book Protect and Defend by Vince Flynn – (This is what I was coming to write when I found that my previous review of Huntingtower was not there)
This is a book that has an end point and works directly towards that end point, but it does explore the ideas of what is legal and right when trying to get information out of someone – does the end justify the means.
Iran has a nuclear facility hidden in the centre of one of it's cities – deep underground and an Israeli agent manages to destroy it, creating a tomb for all the people working inside and a radioactive environmental disaster.
The American's get blamed for the action saying it is the result of a spy plane bombing. Things quickly start to get out of hand as the United Nations condems the attacks, and Iran threatens to cut off the oil supply to the west.
The Lebanese terrorist Imad Mukhtar then enters the fray and wants to take advantage of the quickly deteriorating situation. OF course there is only one person that the American President can call on to help and that is Mitch Rapp, the CIA superhero. He goes on the rampage against the plotting terrorists, with the motto shoot first ask questions afterwards, with the aim of averting total meltdown of the west.
All good fun as a thriller, for Bank Holiday reading. This was book 23 week 17 fiction 21 (4 on audio) non fiction 2
This is my review of the book Huntingtower by John Buchan. When coming to write the blog I realised that somehow my entry for this book had not been published. Shows me that I should check my blog a bit more often. Probably in a hurry and closed the browser without publishing. Anyway.
I listened to this as an audio book – normally I listen to audio books when driving or making cards for our business Hungry Giraffe www.hungrygiraffe.co.uk. This book appealed as it was set in the south west of Scotland near Carrick in the early 1920's. The hero of the book is a old grocer who has sold up his business, and has now retired.
He goes on a walking holiday and uncovers the imprisonment of a Russian lady aristocrat by Bolshevik agents. He sets about freeing her and uses a amazing group of lads from Glasgow the Gorbal Diehard's to help him. The locals join in and uncover a plot based on espionage and violence, which contrasts greatly with the local domestic tranquil Scottish landscape. The low-tech convoluted method that they use to rescue her is fantastic, and a battered bicycle wheel also is key to saving our hero form certain death.
As much as the story is interesting and fun, the asides of everyday description are amazing as well. The Diehard's smoking for example. The story has been compared to a modern fairy-tale of rescue of a young princess.
All good fun. I listened to the Librivox recording and this was book 22 week 17 fiction 20 (4 on audio) non fiction 2
Wild Flower Meadow
Friends, all those of you who follow the RHS @ Chelsea Flower Show, like me, will know that wild flowers are all the rage. Last year we saw a fantastic wild flower meadow in the centre of Canterbury. We had visited it before and wanted to check it out again just to make sure it was as good as we had imagined it.
It was so good we thought it would be nice to try and make one ourselves, in a scrubby area of grass and weeds we have.
More Rough grass (looking the other way)
Having done some research we were met with conflicting info. Do we try and clear everything and start from scratch.
Or keep what good wildflowers there are already and add to them with additional seed. We decided to do the latter and then try and remove some of the more persistent weeds.
We purchased some seed from pitchcare http://www.pitchcare.com/shop/wildflower-seeds/index.html
and sowed the seeds at the end of April.
Weeds - Nettles
Everything seems to be growing well especially the weeds, mainly nettles, as can be seen here.
We have doused them with glyphosate weed killer, but as can be seen all it seems to do is slightly discolour the nettles on first application
Fortunately on second dousing a couple of weeks later the nettles have gone black and died off. It will be a long slow process as we only want to kill the nettles and not the new wildflowers around them.
We will have to wait and see how it all pans out as the season progresses, but hopefully with lots of wildflowers and few weeds.
This is my ad hoc update and diary describing how I am developing our garden at Trostrie Cottage in Galloway. You can see the garden for yourself if you book a self catering holiday @The Shieling which is attached to Trostrie Cottage http://www.trostriecottage.co.uk/ in the South West of Scotland.
This is my review of the book Jeeves in the Offing, by P G Wodehouse, which I read recently. The book is the ongoing saga of Bertie Wooster, and his family and friends. It starts with him reading about his engagement and forthcoming wedding to Bobbie Wickham in the Times. The only trouble is that this is the first he has heard about it, and he needs to investigate what is happening.
To do this he goes off to Brinkley Court, his Aunt Dehlia's house. Sadly it is time for Jeeves to have his annual summer holiday at Herne Bay, so he has to go on his own.
When he gets to Brinkley he finds to his horror that the butler there has transformed into Sir Roderick Glossop, the famous brain surgeon, on undercover work. Also his awful former headmaster is around, as he is going to award the prizes at the local school – the Market Snodbury Grammar School. This bring back terrible thoughts of a previous prize giving for Bertie.
Things go terribly wrong and the only way out seems to be to go off to Herne Bay and get Jeeves. Stop him doing his shrimping and let him come up with a way out of the mess. Sadly for Bertie the easiest way of doing this is not the most comfortable for him.
Good fun, though a little formulaic. I think I will leave it for a while before I read any more of the series.
This was book 21 week 16 fiction 18 (3 on audio) non fiction 2
Friends, this is my review of the Prometheus Deception by Robert Ludlum. This is a book that I have had on my shelf, waiting to be read for some time. In the past I have enjoyed reading Robert's books, and was looking forward to this one. It did not disappoint. I don't think I have ever read a book before, where no-one is who they say they are when they are first introduced. Double crosses, triple crosses, and maybe even a quadruple cross were the norm. Added to this was a fast moving global thriller, that was one minute in Europe, the next in America.
The story line was so fast moving that one did not have time to work out the practicalities, of how things happened. That did not matter it was good fun, right to the last page. So this all being said, what was the book about.
Our hero is Nick Bryson, who works for the Directorate, a US ultra secret agency, spying on the spies. He is taken out of retirement to investigate a global conspiracy, that seems to cover all the major countries of the world, linking terrorism, intelligence and crime.
The more Nick delves into the issue, the fewer people he finds he can trust. To say any more would spoil the plot. I don't know which came first, but there are themes in the book that have been used for James Bond moves, also the 24 series and the Alias TV series.
So this was book 20 week 15 fiction 17 (3 on audio) non fiction 2
Friends this is my review of An Unsuitable Job for a Woman by P.D.James. One of the good things about buying a book is that it can be put on a book case and then found again at a later date and reread and enjoyed. Though the book was written some time ago, I came across it on our shelves, when sorting through some books, and thought I would re-read it.
The key character is Cordelia Gray, who inherits the Pryde Detective agency, after her boss has committed suicide. Her first assignment as twenty-two year old detective is by Sir Ronald Callendar. He wants her to find out what happened to his son Mark, who has died is suspicious circumstances.
Mark was a Cambridge student, but he then dropped out. Cordelia quickly finds out that all is not what it seems, and, Mark's death is not one of suicide, but something far more serious.
This was an enjoyable read, and was as much about the why as well as the who, especially as it has a nice double twist at the end, but to say more would spoil the book.
A was a good read for a bank holiday weekend, book 19 week 14 fiction 17 (3 on audio) non fiction 2.
Friends this is my review of the Return of Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, which I listened to as an audio book from Librivox http://librivox.org/the-return-of-sherlock-holmes-by-sir-arthur-conan-doyle/ , whilst making cards for orders for Cards with a Message
It is a collection of thirteen adventures, first published in 1905. Sir Arthur bring the great detective back and during the course of the thirteen tales, causes Watson to faint in the Empty House, demonstrates that cryptography is elementary in the Dancing Men), and gets engaged in Charles Augustus Milverton. He also manages to prevent a war in the in the final chapter the adventure of the second stain. This adventure also has Watson's statement that Holmes has retired, and forbids him to publish any more stories. Shame really as they are good fun.
This was book 18 week 13 fiction 16 (3 on audio) non fiction 2
Friends maybe you know the poem by William Wordsworth about Daffodils - "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud". It is claimed that it was inspired by an event on April 15, 1802, in which Wordsworth and his sister, Dorothy, came across a "long belt" of daffodils.
Now that the sun has melted the snow, all the daffodils have come out together.
They are scattered all around the house, and remind us of this famous poem, which goes on to say -
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils; Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the Milky Way, They stretch'd in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay: Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
I think they look very impressive, and encourage us to plant some more, hopefully making them even more stunning next year. No doubt I will be writing about this come the autumn.
This is my ad hoc update and diary describing how I am developing our garden at Trostrie Cottage in Galloway. You can see the garden for yourself if you book a self catering friendly holiday @The Shieling which is attached to Trostrie Cottage
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.