Monday, 12 September 2011

Curl in a chair with a good book

It has not been a good day. I dont mind working in retail, in fact sometimes I quite enjoy it. I love merchandising and most of my customers are nice and friendly, and buy one of the many thousands of cards that are in the shop. Today, it was not so great. "this card is entirely the wrong shade of green" or " I like this motorbike mug but his motorbike isnt on you do one with his exact make model and colour?" And I continued with the never ending battle with people's inability to match up the pictures. I could actually spend all day putting cards back in the right places. Add to that the cold ive been battling for ever (ok 16 days but that is a long time), a rather nasty and painful nail bed infection and a particulary stroppy early morning doctors receptionist and you can imagine I've pretty much had enough. Oh and due to aforementioned infection, I can't knit- I know- end of the world right?

Luckily this morning I picked up a book from the pile next to my bed. Now this is the bedroom equivalent of the Booker Prize, if you get next to the Divan, you've made it. Pultizer eat your heart out. This made me think about sharing some of my favourite books with you all. Now as hard as it is to get your novel next to my bed, you can come from any genre and be in any format.

When the Blattman is on nights or lates I always have a book on CD to put on. I used to do this when I was a child, when Phillip Schofield and his bible stories used to lull me to sleep, but now I like to be somewhat more intellectual. (Given half the chance mind you, and if good old Phil wasnt on tape, He's be on like a shot.) Alison Weir is my late night author of choice. My favourite is probably the Lady Elizabeth.
The Lady Elizabeth by Alison Weir
Alison writes an amazingly researched and wonderful story about Elizabeth I from the day she learnt of the death of her mother, Anne Boleyn to the day she became Queen.
There are two other books by Alison Weir I have, The Captive Queen, about Eleanor of Aquitane and her life, and Innocent Traitor about Lady Jane Grey up to her execution. All these books keep me enthralled throughout and you cant put them down.
Finally in the book on CD catagory is The Greatest Knight by Elizabeth Chadwick, about the life story of a Knight, William Marshal, and his life in the court of Henry and Eleanor and Richard the Lionheart. A wonderful story teller and a whole life story

Now in Paperback, I hvae read so many it is tough to get to that all hallowed place. Today, the book that accompanied me to work was Needles and Pearls by Gil McNeil. It is the sequel to the equally brilliant Divas Don't Knit. Both live happily on the pile. They tell the story of Jo Mackenzie and her life on the Kent coast running her wool shop with her two young sons. They are two of the funniest books I have ever read, and I have read them countless times and I am never bored. (Having just looked for links to the first two, I have found that the third is out this year- I could    not be more excited!!!) 

Another Knitting related entrant is the story of Mary after the loss of her only child. The Knitting Circle by Ann Hood is a sad, funny, happy and brilliant novel and I could not recommend it more. For those of us who already knit, we can all find comfort in the act of knitting and in the act of reading this book. If you dont knit, this will give you a bit of an idea why we knit.

I am not a great fan of a cliff hanger. I like an proper ending. Idealy I like a whole story, where no questions are left unanswered. All three of these come under this catagory.

My non knitting related favourites are The Island by Victoria Hislop. This tells the story of a family, Crete and leprosy. It is amazing, and you really get behind the characters and will them to succeed and it is a sad and happy wonderful book. It was on the Richard and Judy Book list and I cannot recommend it enough.

Another of my favourite authors is Adriana Trigliani and my favourite of all her Books is Lucia Lucia, the life story of Lucia and all about the mistakes she makes in her life. it is a wonderful fashion novel too, as Lucia is a seamstress and Adriana creates a world you would long to be in.

Lastly and another of my favourites is The Future Homemakers of America by Laurie Graham. This is another of my escapist novels. This is the story of 6 women thrown together thanks to the USAF and the story follows the twists and turns of their lives. It is funny and well written, very entertaining and brilliant. So very much one of those books you cant put down.
So these are what keep me happy, Id love to hear what you think of them if you read them, or your favourites and recommendations too. 

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