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    • Hayley

      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
Janet

Janet's Reading Log 2009

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Sounds interesting! I just had a look at it on Amazon, where you can read the first 6 pages. I think I might have to add this one to my list, too!

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:irked: Sorry guys!

 

I am getting seriously concerned about all the books I have to read (which have increased significantly since I joined the forum!). I'm going to have to give some serious consideration to giving some away which I've had for years and really have no likelihood of reading. I'm going to have to harden my heart and have a sort out!

 

I gave up on This Charming Man by Marian Keyes - it really wasn't doing it for me.

 

I'm trying the 'official' sequel to Peter Pan now - Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean. I've had this on my pile for a couple of years and I'm hoping it'll be a good, but quick, read. :)

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I'm going to have to give some serious consideration to giving some away which I've had for years and really have no likelihood of reading. I'm going to have to harden my heart and have a sort out!

I'll PM you when I get to Somerset for you address, see you soon! :irked::)

 

 

Well, it's be worth the fuel, and Somerset is a lovely part of the world! :(

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I read Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean today. It's the official sequel to Peter Pan.

 

Big let-down. :blush: I've never read a 'sequel' written by a different author from the original book and after this, I'm not sure I ever will again.

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It was just rather lacking in excitement and (and I know this sounds odd, given that the original was fantasy) too far-fetched. It was very slow and I didn't think she'd captured the essence of the 'lost boys' at all.

 

I loved Barrie's writing style and the humour in Peter Pan - this book didn't have much humour at all, although like you, Lucybird, I thought the opening line meant it would.

 

It was darker than Peter Pan, and I don't have a problem with that, but it just wasn't as much fun as the original and it left me feeling a bit 'meh'! :blush:

 

I didn't hate it, but I'd only give it about 5/10.

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Well that's disappointing. A good opening line is very well but you need to follow up on it

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Forgot to say, there was a continuity error between Peter Pan and its sequel...

 

Don't click if you intend to read Peter Pan in Scarlet!

 

 

In the sequel, Peter can't fly because he's lost his shadow - but in the original he could fly without it (before Wendy stitched it back on!).

 

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That seems like a pretty basic thing to get wrong! I don't think I'll be reading the sequel. I was wary anyway because it seems wrong for another author to write a sequel to someone else's work.

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I read Peter Pan in Scarlet by Geraldine McCaughrean today. It's the official sequel to Peter Pan.

 

I didn't know there was a sequel! :) But now you've put me off it... *laughs*

 

Sequels by different authors are a bit of a gamble I think. I guess you can occasionally get some well written, funny stuff. But most of the time isn't it just a ploy to keep exploiting the good idea an author once had?

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Sorry. :);)

 

In this sequel's defence, it was written for a great cause as all the profits from the sale go to Great Ormond Street Hospital. :tong:

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Finished The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson - 7/10

 

Moving on to Bill Bryson's African Diary which shouldn't take too long!

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Finished African Diary yesterday which was short and sweet! :D

 

Tomorrow I shall start Brideshead Revisited. :lol:

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Yesterday I read The Gold Bug by Edgar Allen Poe. The book actually contains three short stories, all of which I enjoyed. :smile:

026-2009-Apr-20-TheGoldBug.jpg

 

 The Gold Bug by Edgar Allen Poe

The ‘blurb’
Believing William Legrand to have gone insane following an insect bite, his friend initially decries his quest for gold as the ramblings of a madman. Yet when Legrand's conviction refuses to waiver, they set off on a bizarre journey, accompanied by Jupiter, Legrand's loyal and equally sceptical servant. What follows is a strange tale of coded messages, hidden treasure and uncanny prophecy that will both baffle and enthral even the most perceptive of readers.

Part horror story, part detective fiction, ‘The Gold Bug’ is an ingenious and imaginatively told tale bearing all the hallmarks of Poe’s remarkable narrative skill. It is presented here alongside two other stories of obsession, ‘The Sphinx’ and ‘William Wilson’


This is my first taste of Poe and this collection actually contains three short stories, although the only mention of this fact is inside the front cover!

The main story is narrated by an unnamed friend of Legrand who observes how his friend becomes obsessed with finding treasure after being bitten by a golden coloured scarab-like beetle.

After finding said treasure, Legrand then explains how he went about solving a cipher which would eventually lead him to the hiding place.



Legrand’s servant Jupiter is a black man, whose dialogue is written phonetically and sometimes I found it difficult to follow so had to read it quite slowly! The way Jupiter is portrayed has been criticised as being stereotypical and that his accent is inauthentic, but I think one has to remember that when the story was written (1843) this portrayal would have been entirely acceptable.

Although I enjoyed it I didn’t think of it as being a ‘horror’ story at all like the ‘blurb’ suggests.

The second story in the collection, The Sphinx, is only 6 pages long (and can be read online  here.   I won’t say too much about it as I don’t want to give anything away, but I thought it was great - very clever!

The final story, William Wilson, is a story of doppelgangers - William Wilson attends school where another boy with the same name of him joins the school on the same day as him and shares the same birthday! He also looks quite a lot like William.

Wilson leaves the school and after spending time at home, he enters Eton and then Oxford where his lifestyle becomes more and more debauched. His obsession with his double, who seems to turn up at every opportunity, consumes him and eventually leads him to attack his double. This was definitely the darkest of the three stories and also my favourite and I shall definitely be looking out for more by this author.

The paperback is 83 pages long and is published by Hesperus. The ISBN number is 978-1843911449.

8/10

(Read April 2009)

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Yesterday I read The Two Pound Tram by William Newton.

 

Wilfred, who is younger than his brother by 18 months, and Duncan leave home shortly after Duncan's 16th birthday and head for London to buy a tram. After realising they can't buy an electric one, they purchase a horse-drawn tram and a retired rag-and-bone horse and set off on their journey.

 

After a brush with the law in Canterbury (where they pick up a young part-Romany girl who decides to travel with them), they end up in Worthing on the south coast where they get involved with the War effort, until one night, during a storm, a tragedy occurs that will end their idyllic lifestyle, but also help one of them to forge a different life.

 

The story was pretty far-fetched in terms of coincidence and good fortune and I felt the ending was rather rushed and perhaps all tied up rather too nicely, but the story was a good one and it only took a couple of hours to read so is okay as something light and for a bit of escapism.

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Finished Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh - 9/10

 

It took me ages to read (I've been so busy) but I thought it was great! :D

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I finished The Reader by Bernhard Schlink whilst I was away recently - I thought it was great! 9/10.

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