Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell BBC adaptation

jsamnpicIf only I hadn’t just watched episode three, I would be positively gushing about this series. I have loved every second and watched in raptures on a Sunday evening. It’s no use, as a die-hard book fan, I’m going to have to have a moan about the changes they put in last night…

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Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke

I cannot express how excited I am about the television series starting on BBC1 this evening, and I cannot believe I haven’t written a review of the book before now. If one day I am famous and interesting enough to be on Desert Island Discs, this would be the book I’d choose to take with me….

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Poldark review. BBC1 Sunday evenings

poldarkWell, we’re three episodes in, so I’ve given this new Poldark series a good chance before writing the review. Firstly, I have to say that I am a massive fan of the original 1975 series. My sister and I watched it first when it was repeated in 1988 and I couldn’t believe the fact that the boy called Ross in my class was actually named after the main character! (Spoiler alerts coming up if you haven’t yet caught up!)

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Review of Sudden Death at Thornbury Manor written by Chris Lewis & Carol Hutton. Performed by Pilton Players

I’ve been asked to write a review of the play, which I watched on Thursday. So here it is:

What a wonderful evening out in Pilton! Walking into the hall it was a pleasant surprise to find we sat at beautifully laid tables rather than the usual rows of seats. It is true to say that nothing about this performance was particularly usual! …..

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Birmingham NEC, MCM Comic Con

comiccon1It was a bit of a drive for us, but the kids have wanted to go to a comic con for a while, so it was worth it for them. Never having been before, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, but costume planning was rife in our household and I went as Tauriel from The Hobbit films; Rain went as Hay Lin from W.I.T.C.H. and Jude went as Harley Quinn from Batman. (Chris won’t dress up, but did at least wear a Star Wars t-shirt.) And we did look pretty good even if I do say so myself!

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In defence of Pixie Lott and freedom of expression

Pixie-LottI’m a bit nervous about this one, so excuse me while a get a little political: Je suis Charlie. Everyone at the moment is defending freedom of speech – we are allowed to say what we want whether or not it offends people. The point is, we have the right to do so. So what about freedom of expression in other ways? The freedom to wear what we want for example? Glastonbury Festival has decided this year to ban the selling of native American style headdresses and costume while 2 days ago Pixie Lott received negative media attention and a flurry of criticism on Twitter for dressing up as TigerLily from Peter Pan and a similar thing happened to Ellie Goulding at Halloween. Surely the context in these situations is relevant? Festivals, fancy dress birthday parties and Halloween are occasions where it is quite commonplace to dress up. (I personally tend to find more excuses than that.) ….

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Into the Woods film review

The problem about having an engaging trailer and a really good cast is you go to see a film with high expectations. I enjoy musicals and I love fairytales, so as you might expect, I was thoroughly looking forward to Into The Woods. This is how I imagine the conversation in film-making offices went….

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The Hobbit – Battle of the Five Armies

Last night we drove to Yeovil to watch the final in the Hobbit Trilogy. Proof really, that it really should have only been two films. The second was my favourite – we indulged in the luxury of watching it at our nearest imax theatre in Cardiff and it was an amazing experience. I’m glad we didn’t bother with this one though….

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The practicalities of wood-fired heating

My posts about the Rayburn 345W are still some of my most popular as there is so little information about them. Now we’ve had ours for four years, I thought I’d put together a list of practicalities that should be considered if you’re thinking about heating your house with wood….

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What is 50,000 divided by 30?

The answer is 1667. If you’ve just completed National November Writing Month, otherwise known as NaNoWriMo, then you’ll know what I’m talking about. For those of you who don’t, the idea is that you write a 50,000 word novel in just the 30 days which make up the month of November. Many people around the world get involved and local events are organised where people get together and just write.

Well anyway, I decided to have a go this year and this is what happened….

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