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    • Michelle

      Important Announcement!   07/28/2018

      Dear BCF members,   This forum has been running now for many years, and over that time we have seen many changes. Generalised forums are nowhere near as popular as they once were, and they have been very much taken over by blogs, vlogs and social media discussions. Running a forum well takes money, and a lot of care and attention, as there is so much which goes on behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly.   With all of this in mind, and after discussion within the current moderator team, the decision has been made to close this forum in its current format. I know that this will disappoint a lot of our long term members, but I want to reassure you that it's not a decision which has been taken lightly.    The remaining moderator team have agreed that we do not want to lose everything which is special about our home, and so we are starting a brand new facebook group, so that people can stay in touch, and discussions can continue. We can use it for free and should be easier for us to run (it won't need to be updated or hosted). We know not everyone has FaceBook, but we hope that those of you who are interested will join the group. We will share the link, and send invites as soon as we are ready to go. Added: We may as well get this going, find us here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/195289821332924/   The forum will close to new registrations, but will remain open for some time, to allow people to collect up any information, reading lists etc they need to, and to ensure they have contact details for those they wish to stay in touch with.    The whole team feel sad to say goodbye, but we also feel that it's perhaps time and that it feels like the right choice. We hope we can stay in touch with all of you through our new FaceBook group.   I personally want to thank everyone who has helped me moderate the forum, both in the past and the present, and I also want to thank every single person who has visited, and shared their love of books.. I'm so proud of everything we've achieved, and the home we built.   Please visit the new section in the Lounge section to discuss this further, ask questions etc.
Inver

Diane's Reading List - 2017

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'Harry the Poisonous Centipede' by Lynne Reid Banks

 

Not a grown up book but I was recommending it to someone on Facebook re books for ~7/8yr old grandson and this one came to mine and Kenny still has his copy, so I decided to read it...took me back to when we read stories to our boys.

 

Harry is a centipede and lives with his mother Belinda in the tunnels underground. He isn't very brave and his friend George is always tempting him in to being more adventurous, but sometimes this gets them in to bother. They know the shouldn't do naughty things they have been warned about by Belinda....like not to go Up the Up Pipe...and beware of and keep away from Hoo-Mins. It is a lovley wee read and I enjoyed it in a fun way, full of 'squirmy' fun. Was nice to go back to a childhood favourite of my boys when growing up.

 

4/5

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'Between Sisters' by Cathy Kelly

 

I can't remember if I have read any Cathy Kelly before. My sister gave me the book. I mostly enjoyed this easy read about Cassie and Coco. Being brought up by their grandmother, Pearl, after there mother leaves them when they were very young. Cassie remembers her mother but Coco (hated this name) was just a baby. But eventually we find out why she left. Cassie is married with a husband and two daughters and Coco is single and runs a vintage clothes shop0. The book deals with everyday life, families, break ups, romance and second chances, friendships, alcoholism. Lots of characters to remember and at times I found it a little to long and drawn out with not much happening. Of the two sisters I liked Coco (despite the name). It had a good enough end if a tad predictable.

 

3/5

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I've read The Perfect Holiday by Cathy Kelly, a novella, which I liked. I've been meaning to read something else by her (a novel) but haven't done so yet. I own a couple of her books but I don't think I own Between Sisters. I'm glad you enjoyed it :).

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I've said it elsewhere, Diane, but thanks so much for the gorgeous postcard.  What a lovely surprise when I got home from work.  :friends3:

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You are welcome @Janet....seems I've made a few folk happy... :boogie:

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On ‎16‎/‎05‎/‎2017 at 2:03 PM, chesilbeach said:

Thank you from me too! I'm using it as a bookmark now :smile2:

 

@chesilbeach....lovely...

On ‎16‎/‎05‎/‎2017 at 8:20 PM, Janet said:

Me too!  :yes: 

@Janet....lovely...

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' A Week in Paris' by Rachel Hore

 

The title ' A Week in Paris' sounds like a read that would draw you in completely for the title, but I have to say it was a little disappointing and I felt a little too long. Two characters, Kitty, who enrols in the Conservatoire, 1937 to hopefully become a concert pianist. War breaks out and she finds herself torn whether to stay with her husband or take her and her child back home to England. She stays. Fay, 25 years later, doesn't have many memories of her childhood and now playing in a orchestra herself, is performing in Paris. Ideal opportunity to find out more of what happened when she was living there with her mother. Circumstances from home push her to find out more with some secrets uncovered that her mother has never told her about....why? She manages to trace the past and discovers truths.

There was a lot of historical references to what went on in Paris during this time which I found quite interesting, but at times the story was a little flat and I felt I wanted more, but not quite sure what.

 

3/5

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'Welcome to Rosie Hopkins' Sweet Shop of Dreams' by Jenny Colgan.

 

Enjoyed the 'sweetie references' at the beginning of each chapter, but other than that a very ordinary, non taxing read. Sweetie shop, aged Aunt Lilian, Angie the daughter, asks, Rosie the great niece to go and look after her after illness. Shop potentially needs put up for sale. Rosie settles in, spruces up the shop, reopens, gets to know the locals etc. Didn't find the love interest very engaging. Not without its ups and downs but a bit predictable how it was going to end and a bit too 'sweet' for me.

 

2/5

Edited by Inver

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Oh, I'm sorry you didn't enjoy it so much, Diane.  I think I probably over egg my enthusiasm for Jenny Colgan at times, but I do find them great escapism and the romance is usually a side order to the main dish of women finding a better life style for themselves. :)

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Shame you didn't enjoy this one overly much, Diane :(. I haven't read it yet but I do plan to do so some day.

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'The Nightingale' by Kristin Hannah

 

Wow! I don't know why I haven't read this wonderful book sooner....recommended so many times by bookie friends. A totally riveting but heart wrenching read....sisters Isabelle and Vianne, two different characters who have to come through the atrocities of war and a France occupied by Nazi in WWII. A well researched and quite harrowing read in parts. I was near to tears on a few occasions. Where people reached for the strength to survive in these times of war is beyond me, but they did. A time of loss and pain for both sisters. Separated and not knowing what is happening to the other. Isabelle a headstrong, independent woman who wants to help France and Vianne, surviving at home with her child but also dealing with Nazi billeting in her home. Will they both survive?

 

Kristin's writing had a way of making you feel almost exactly how the characters were feeling. Towards the end I was feeling a bit uncomfortable about how humans can treat each other so horribly, but that unfortunately that is the way of war.

 

Totally recommend this book ( @chaliepud....sorry it took so long to get to this book, but thank you for recommending it)

 

5/5

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Great to see another positive review for The Nightingale, I plan to read the book some day (when I'm in the right mood). I'm glad you liked the book :).

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Oh I do hope you enjoy it when you do. I took too long to read it after al the recommendations for it.

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On 14 July 2017 at 4:36 PM, Inver said:

'The Nightingale' by Kristin Hannah

 

Wow! I don't know why I haven't read this wonderful book sooner....recommended so many times by bookie friends. A totally riveting but heart wrenching read....sisters Isabelle and Vianne, two different characters who have to come through the atrocities of war and a France occupied by Nazi in WWII. A well researched and quite harrowing read in parts. I was near to tears on a few occasions. Where people reached for the strength to survive in these times of war is beyond me, but they did. A time of loss and pain for both sisters. Separated and not knowing what is happening to the other. Isabelle a headstrong, independent woman who wants to help France and Vianne, surviving at home with her child but also dealing with Nazi billeting in her home. Will they both survive?

 

Kristin's writing had a way of making you feel almost exactly how the characters were feeling. Towards the end I was feeling a bit uncomfortable about how humans can treat each other so horribly, but that unfortunately that is the way of war.

 

Totally recommend this book ( @chaliepud....sorry it took so long to get to this book, but thank you for recommending it)

 

5/5

You're very welcome, Diane, how lucky that we enjoy similar books! :) 

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'House Rules' by Jodi Picoult

 

A while since I've read a Jodi Picoult again, so gave this one a go. Asperger's being the main topic this time. The usually scenario of mother trying to good by her children, whether guilty or not. A situation occurs that points the finger of guilt at her son Jacob, but did he do it? Although obviously well researched regarding the Asperger's syndrome I did find this book very repetitive and could well have been shorter and the conclusion reached sooner. I so wanted the accused to just tell them what happened by the end and then I wasn't quite sure about the ending! In my mind I knew what the outcome would be but found the ending a bit untidy.

 

2/5

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Shame you didn't really enjoy this one :(. I liked it at the time of reading it, but I have to say I can't remember anything about the ending. I guess I'll have to re-read it some time and see how I get on.

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@Athena.....it was an ok read, but I'm finding here reads a bit samey now. Maybe I have just tired myself of her books. I've read other people feeling the same too. so not just me.

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@chaliepud ......So....the postie man left me a wee bookie shaped parcel :exc:through the letter box today. I know I hadn't ordered/swapped a book with anyone. I have the most generous bookie friends. Thanking you Hayley again for the nice surprise and I can say I haven't read this one but I have read all her others and enjoyed them.

 

'The Little Pieces for You and Me' by Vanessa Greene.

Edited by Inver

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2 hours ago, Inver said:

@Athena.....it was an ok read, but I'm finding here reads a bit samey now. Maybe I have just tired myself of her books. I've read other people feeling the same too. so not just me.

 

Sorry to hear that, it's true that some of her books have quite a few similarities. I hope you will get on better with other authors :).

 

2 hours ago, Inver said:

@chaliepud ......So....the postie man left me a wee bookie shaped parcel :exc:through the letter box today. I know I hadn't ordered/swapped a book with anyone. I have the most generous bookie friends. Thanking you Hayley again for the nice surprise and I can say I haven't read this one but I have read all her others and enjoyed them.

 

'The Little Pieces for You and Me' by Vanessa Greene.

 

What a nice surprise! I hope you enjoy this one :).

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'The Forgotten Summer' by Carol Drinkwater

 

I kept this one for my holiday read this year and thoroughly enjoyed being whisked away to France to the vineyards and olive trees. Carol writes about these subjects with such detail (I was taken back to The Olive Farm series...). I loved the characters and the twists in the storyline of past and present in the sun drenched Provence...although I wanted to shake Clarisse at times. When tragedy strikes Jane's beloved Luc she has to make decisions on how the future lies, whether it be in helping keep Luc's beloved vineyards going or go back to England. If Clarisse (Luc's mother) had her way she wouldn't let her have anything to do with it. When she is sifting through all Luc's files etc. she comes upon secrets he was keeping from her....and there lies a plot and how can she fine out the truth,but you will have to read the book to find out more.

 

All in all I enjoyed this as my holiday read...thank you Carol.

 

4/5

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'Song of the Skylark' by Erica James

 

What a lovely read this was. Going between past and present....Clarissa and Lizzie, years apart in age but are brought together when Lizzie's mother gets her to volunteer at the care home she helps works at.

 

Lizzie befriends Clarissa (95) and she begins to ask Clarissa about her past. She opens up and there the tale begins of how she sailed from America over to the UK at the age of 19 and how she made friends on board with Artie, Ellis, Effie, Betty. Once she arrives in England she seeks out her grandparents and there she stays. Her life totally different to what she has left and takes us up to and through WWII. She persuades her grandparents to take in two young boys torn apart from their parents due to the war. Clarissa remembers all the details of their lives through this trying time and how she still kept in touch with her friends she made. Everyone struggles through war time and not without love and losses, but they find strength to carry on.

 

Lizzie has her problems too, but through her friendship with Clarissa she begins to see the error of her ways with guidance from her new friend. She comes to see that her future may take a different route and a more steady paced lifestyle could be just what she needs. Her family are there for support and she is loving helping out with her nephew, Freddie.

 

I loved all the characters and the friendship of young and old was gently merged and became very special to both. The ending was inevitable but done in a very touching way and brought a tear to my eye. There were no loose ends as Lizzie and family had their own neat conclusion.

 

4/5

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