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      Signing Up   11/06/2018

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    • Hayley

      Special Christmas Giveaway!   12/01/2018

      I am very, very excited to announce a special Christmas giveaway for supporting members! Thanks to https://www.secretbookclubuk.co.uk/ one supporting member will win a Secret Book Club Book Box on December 25th!      The winner will be able to choose between six great genres for their book box: Crime & Thriller Mind, Body & Soul Debut Novel or Self Published History Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy    See the 'Giveaways' thread for more details   


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About Madeleine

  • Rank
  • Birthday 06/05/1964

Profile Information

  • Reading now?
    Christmas Lights by Karen Swan & The Christmas Card Crime & other stories
  • Location:
    SE England
  • Interests
    Reading, walking, visiting places of interest, getting out of London.

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1,813 profile views
  1. What cheered you up today?

    We had Xmas jumper day too, I couldn't find mine but there were some lovely ones, including Chewbacca (from Star Wars) with antlers which had flashing lights, and a human advent calendar.
  2. How many books have you read this year?

    Think I'm on around 46, I usually aim for 50 each year.
  3. Gone Girl - Gillian Flynn

    I saw the film and thought it was OK.
  4. Madeleine's Book Log - ongoing

    House of Christmas Secrets by Lynda Stacey - this is a sequel to the earlier House of Secrets, which I've got but haven't read, however due to being constantly reminded of what happened in the first book I almost feel as if I don't need to read it now! Anyway it's a year on from those traumatic events and the owners and residents of the Wrea Head Hall Hotel are getting their lives back together and preparing for a busy Xmas, as well as a wedding at New Year when one of the two half-sisters, Jess, marries Jack,who also works at the hotel. But their plans are thrown into disarray when a man claiming to be Jess's father turns up, complete with his daughter from a relationship with a woman who has now become a drug-addicted prostitute, who decides that the only way to get rid of her pimp (to whom she owes thousands of pounds) is to sell her daughter to him. No prizes for guessing where it's all going, and although it does get a bit nasty at times for such a cosy sounding novel, there's a certain predictability about it as well. I found the characters a bit clichéd, and not totally convincing, and the author's constant use of questions to push the story along became annoying after a while. An ok read but nothing special. And the hotel actually exists (it's in Yorkshire) and sounds lovely. 6.5/10
  5. Christmas Holiday 2018

    I've been to Disney at Christmas and it looks fabulous, great photos. The house is amazing.
  6. Madeleine's Book Log - ongoing

    The Toymakers by Robert Dinsdale - it's the beginning of the last century and Cathy Wray is her mid teens, pregnant and her mother has arranged for her to "go away" to have her baby, which will be given up for adoption. Cathy is having none of this, she loves her family but wants to keep the baby, and when she sees an advert in the paper for a job at The Emporium, it seems like the answer to her prayers, for a while at least. She duly gets a job, and the accommodation which comes with it, and moves in to the magical toy shop in Iron Duke Mews in London's Mayfair. It opens as soon as the first frost comes, and shuts when the first snowdrop blooms, but for a few magical months, it's a place of wonder for both staff and customers alike, as toys do everything except live and breathe. It's run by Papa Jack and his two sons, Emil and Kaspar, who are in constant competition to make the best toy, and of course impress, and maybe surpass, their father. And when Cathy turns up, an inevitable love triangle ensues, but then the First World War changes everything, including the Emporium and it's occupants. I thoroughly enjoyed this, at first it's reminiscent of The Night Circus, and for a while I did wonder where it was going, until the War came along, when the story became darker, and after that there were several twists and turns. It's a beautifully written, engaging tale with lots of magic (I want a patchwork dog!) and strong characters in Cathy and Kaspar, although I found Emil was a bit more of a cliche and his story almost seemed peripheral - I wondered why his sons were never named in the book for example. It's a lovely, Christmassy read, even if the ending is a tad whimsical. 8.5/10
  7. Willoyd's Reading 2018

    I did read Miniaturist first, but still prefer it, I think the two books are so different that it doesn't really matter which one is read first. In the TV series, you do find out a little bit more about the Miniaturist (they add in a few extra scenes) and it looks absolutely stunning, some scenes look like the characters are in a Rembrandt painting.
  8. Brian's Book Log - Ongoing

    I'd agree with you about the definition of multi-tasking Will, or, as I call it, jack of all trades and master of none! But that just about sums it up perfectly.
  9. Willoyd's Reading 2018

    Did you watch the TV version of The Miniaturist Will? It was on last Xmas. Personally I prefer The Miniaturist to the Muse as well, I wonder what she'll come up with next, as both books are very different.
  10. Christmas Holiday 2018

    I put my tree up on Saturday - managed to drop a box of baubles and broke four - and got batteries yesterday for a few little fibre optic figures which brighten it up a bit, wrote my few cards which need posting, and am almost done present shopping.
  11. Hello!

    HI Dolly and welcome!
  12. Madeleine's Book Log - ongoing

    Sleep no More by P D James - this is a collection of 6 short stories by the late great P D James, and I thought it was much better than last year's Xmas offering which was OK but nothing special. All these stories focus on some form of revenge, or come-uppance, and have a twist, including a man who takes his revenge on a rival who steals his secrets, a cuckolded husband (who nursed his grievance for far too long, I thought), a strange child who's obsessed with graveyards (my least favourite story), another man who wants his love (and work) rival out of the way, an unpopular uncle who's murdered on Xmas Eve whilst dressed as Santa Claus in a classic country house mystery with practically everyone a suspect, and my favourite, the final story in the collection which reads like an episode of "Midsomer Murders", and has a darkly humourous undertone and a neat twist. 7/10
  13. What's the weather like?

    Now very wet here as well, and cold.
  14. What's the weather like?

    Surprised to see it was quite foggy this morning, and much colder. Meant to get into the teens midweek, but wet and windy, yuk.