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Poppy's Paperbacks 2012

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:Dah adventurous but with limits .. very wise :D I hope that you'll like it if you do decide to read it. It is fantasy of course but very stripped back fantasy .. sort of acoustic fantasy .. for example if Erikson is Rush .. then this is more your Fleet Foxes but quality for all that (hope I'm making things clear :D) You won't be moshing in a pit but you'll be thinking about how beautiful the lyrics and imagery are :smile:

 

Well that's put me off it :giggle2:

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Do you know for someone who gabs a lot I haven't amassed many posts! Must try and keep it short and sweet (haha ... never gonna happen :D)

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Yes, I'll try and keep this concise :giggle2:

 

roomofonesown.jpg

 

Room of One's Own - Virginia Woolf

 

Amazon's Synopsis: Virginia Woolf's famous essay on women and writing grew out of a lecture first given to female students at Cambridge in 1928. With passion and anger, 'A Room of One's Own' lays bare the structure of male privilege, female exclusion, and the effects of poverty and sexual constraint on women's creativity. Evoking the spirit of past writers such as Aphra Behn, Jane Austen and Charlotte Brontë who died 'at war with her lot… young, cramped and thwarted', Virginia Woolf portrays women's desperate and often silent struggle for expression with a passionate originality. Highly influential, humorous and subtle, full of optimism for what the liberated mind can accomplish, 'A Room of One's Own' is one of the greatest feminist polemics of the century.

 

Review: So this is what you get if you ask Virginia to write down her thoughts about women and fiction ... a little work of genius. If I'm honest, I'm a little bit wary of the 'f' word and feminist literature in particular .. it makes my teeth itch. I felt this a bit with Caitlin Moran's How To Be a Woman .. it was hugely enjoyable but there were too many mentions of the word 'patriarchy' (which turns up here quite a lot too but in this case didn't irritate) and too many 'us and them' scenarios which were alien to me. I'm not a very independent person and in truth I quite like being looked after by a man .. not in a financial sense (though if a man wants to buy me books/shoes/cake .. I won't argue :smile:) .. but in a spider hunting, drain clearing, I'll take care of you sort of way .. and I don't feel aggrieved to be the one who nine times out of ten is expected to make the dinner (although get me on a bad day and it would be more than your life's worth to expect it) .. I quite like to nurture. That's not to say that I don't appreciate the struggles of the women who have gone before .. obviously I do and quite clearly I wouldn't have a little business of my own etc if it weren't for all those strong women who gave us a voice (other than the one that says 'is your tea alright dear'?) but Virginia (yes I'm coming back to her .. I had wandered off the path there and forgot my breadcrumbs but hopefully I'm back on track now) opened my eyes a lot more to how things really were for woman back in the 17th/18th/19th centuries. And it made me realise that the reason I'm not passionate about feminist issues is because I've nothing to resent .. or very little .. if you took me back a hundred years or so I'd probably be livid and throwing myself under carts. I got quite annoyed just reading about it.

 

'Some previous luncher had left the lunch edition of the evening paper on a chair, and, waiting to be served, I began idly reading the headlines. A ribbon of very large letters ran across the page. Somebody had made a big score in South Africa. Lesser ribbons announced that Sir Austen Chamberlain was at Geneva. A meat axe with human hair on it had been found in a cellar. Mr justice —— commented in the Divorce Courts upon the Shamelessness of Women. Sprinkled about the paper were other pieces of news. A film actress had been lowered from a peak in California and hung suspended in mid-air. The weather was going to be foggy. The most transient visitor to this planet, I thought, who picked up this paper could not fail to be aware, even from this scattered testimony, that England is under the rule of a patriarchy. Nobody in their senses could fail to detect the dominance of the professor. His was the power and the money and the influence. He was the proprietor of the paper and its editor and sub-editor. He was the Foreign Secretary and the judge. He was the cricketer; he owned the racehorses and the yachts. He Was the director of the company that pays two hundred per cent to its shareholders. He left millions to charities and colleges that were ruled by himself. He suspended the film actress in mid-air. He will decide if the hair on the meat axe is human; he it is who will acquit or convict the murderer, and hang him, or let him go free. With the exception of the fog he seemed to control everything.'

 

Of course I've heard of the suffragettes and Emmeline Pankhurst etc but I didn't, for example, know anything about Aphra Behn (one of the first women to make a living out of writing) .. I had never heard of her so was thoroughly chastened by Virginia's proclamation that all women should throw flowers on her tomb in gratitude (in Westminster Abbey if anyone feels like chucking a rose at it) 'for it was she who earned them the right to speak their minds'. One can only imagine what courage it took to speak out in the 1600's .. though Aphra does seem to have been blessed with a devil may care attitude which obviously was a great asset. I guess shrinking violets probably shrunk in the 1600's.

 

Though this essay is based on a series of lectures Virginia delivered at Cambridge University, she uses a fictional narrator which quite cleverly allows her greater freedom. She also invents Judith Shakespeare (sister of the bard) to show how a woman with the same abilities and talents would fare in a world where opportunities for women were practically non existent (poor Judith .. I won't outline her sad fate but suffice it to say she didn't become a world famous playwright or get her face on a £20 note.) What's also interesting is Virginia's exploration of what she calls the 'four famous names' (Jane Austen, Emily Brontë, Charlotte Brontë and George Eliot) .. pitting at one point Jane Austen against Charlotte Brontë and coming up with surprising conclusions as to how she perceived they coped with the privations and prejudices that were a woman writer's lot back then. The one thing that Virginia returns to time and time again (though she wanders off more than me if you can believe it .. though all to the purpose) is her belief that a woman must have money and a room of her own to successfully write fiction. That they can only write freely if they have no other burdens or worries to distract them. The case could probably be argued against it now but given the time she was writing in (1928) it's hard to disagree.

 

'Therefore I would ask you to write all kinds of books, hesitating at no subject however trivial or however vast. By hook or by crook, I hope that you will possess yourselves of money enough to travel and to idle, to contemplate the future or the past of the world, to dream over books and loiter at street corners and let the line of thought dip deep into the stream.'

 

It's a must .. an absolute must for anyone interested in women's fiction .. or fiction in general (there's plenty here about male authors and she's not severe on ALL of them :D) .. there's something to make your brain tick on every page.

 

10/10

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Wow Poppy

THAT was a super good review. I've not had the pleasure of dealing with Virginia myself yet. Sadly, I dont think I've read anything by her.

It certainly sounds like she got quite a rise out of you and hit a nerve .She must be a very good writer to be able to show us TODAY how badly we would have had it if we had been born a hundred or more years ago .

I guess I'm like you, I dont ever really think about things like that or pay much attention to them,but as you said, we dont really have it in our faces about how low class we are or how we dont deserve the exact same things in life that men do .

Wonderful job,and see there, your reviews are picking up speed :)

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Frankie, did you know that there's a stereotype about the English and bathing?

 

No, what's that? *shock horror* I only know that some of the fine English bathers from here love to read books in their baths, and I don't think that's a bad thing at all :D

 

 

piedpiper.jpg

 

 

I'm so happy you liked this novel, it was such a dear read! They don't make 'em like this anymores :(

 

I also love the cover art, it's beautiful.

 

 

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I never got to reading this book for the Reading Circle, unfortunately, but I've heard so many great things about the novel (I think Lauraloves wrote a great review on it, for example) that I do want to read it at some point. And you seemed to really like it, too. Oh, silly me, it was a re-read for you :D

 

 

As I said on the circle thread it always makes my 'Holiday Cottage Bookshelf List' which I've drawn up just incase I ever own one (you need to plan ahead) I usually hate the sad old bookshelves in holiday cottages because they're full of abandoned books that nobody gives three straws for. Well MY bookshelf .. or bookcase because I'm never going to fit them all on one measly shelf .. is going to delight and amaze.

 

When you get around to this, can I please come and visit?! :D Ooooh, could we do a test run before you open it up for customers? Have some of us great folk here on BCF come over and stay for a few days, weeks, a few months possibly, to see if the place is suitable and lovely and all livable, so you could go into business? :giggle2:

 

Ooooh! It could be a safe retreat for people who've lost their mojos!! Fancy that! :o

 

 

booksbaguettes.jpg

 

I so wants a copy of this someday! :blush:

 

 

I bought my first book in ages today .. just a secondhand book from a charity shop but even so I didn't intend it .. they sell secondhand furniture and I was looking for a bookshelf but there, amongst their books (I just glanced at them on the off chance you understand), was a great big housebrick called .. Sylvia Plath Letters Home .. and it was just £1. Oh happy day!

 

That was a brilliant find, I'm so pleased for you!! And what a bargain, too :friends3:

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What a wonderful review of A Room of One's Own! :) I'm so glad you included a nice long quotation as well. It has helped me to realise that I really needn't be daunted by Virginia Woolf.

 

No, what's that? *shock horror* I only know that some of the fine English bathers from here love to read books in their baths, and I don't think that's a bad thing at all :D

 

Hehe. Well, I didn't say it was an accurate stereotype (I wouldn't dare say that on an English forum :o)!

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Yes! Steve was ever so good as to send it to me because I liked the sound of it from his review and hurrah .. I liked it lots. It was sci-fi yes but it was Poppyshake friendly sci-fi so very enjoyable. Watch out for my review Kylie .. anytime in the next year

 

Poppyshake friendly sci-fi? Oh dear! I think I might have to look the book up :D It might be frankie friendly, too!

 

snowchild.jpg

 

 

This title's been here and there and everywhere these days, I absolutely must add it to my wishlist after having read your superb review on it :smile2: Thanks!

 

 

 

roomofonesown.jpg

 

 

And yet another excellent review! I loved reading what you made of the book in terms with how your own life is. Feminism should't be about growing balls and going equal on men in that way, but being allowed to be the sort of women we are and respected as equals.

 

I can't remember if we've discussed Moran's book before, but I think Lucybird (?) reviewed the book some time ago and I had to add it to my wishlist. And this leads to another book: Do not ask me why, but I was watching Rachael Ray's show some time ago (okay, I'll tell you, I don't want anyone thinking I watch that show religiously! I was changing the channels to see what was on, I don't like her show, it makes me cringe and she makes me cringe, but they were discussing a book, so I had to listen for a while!), and they were talking about What French Women Know by Debra Ollivier:

 

"It's not the shoes, the scarves, or the lipstick that gives French women their allure. It's this: French women don't give a damn. They don't expect men to understand them. They don't care about being liked or being like everyone else. They accept the passage of time, celebrate the immediacy of pleasure, embrace ambiguity and imperfection, and prefer having a life to making a living. In "What French Women Know," Debra Ollivier goes beyond stale ooh- la-la stereotypes, challenging ingrained notions about sex, love, marriage, motherhood, and everything in between. With savvy, provocative thinking from French mistresses and maidens alike, Ollivier presents a refreshing counterpoint to the tired love dogma of our times, and offers realistic, liberating alternatives from the land that knows how to love."

 

What Ollivier said about the book on the show was illuminating and I had to add the book on my wishlist. I've been meaning to tell you about the book because you are soon traveling to France and I thought it might interest you! :)

 

Interesting that Emmeline Pankhurst is mentioned! I'd heard of her name on this forum, I didn't know anything about her but the name stuck in my mind, and some time later, quite coincidentally, I found a copy of her biography in the free book exchange trolley at the library and had to get it. It's a rather tiny book, I don't know what it'll be like, but I will read it anyways. If you would happen to be interested in it, I could send it to you after I read it myself :)

 

Oh. And if Room of One's Own wasn't already on my wishlist, your review would've totally made me want to add it!

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What a wonderful review of A Room of One's Own! :) I'm so glad you included a nice long quotation as well. It has helped me to realise that I really needn't be daunted by Virginia Woolf.

 

You needn't be, you gots the brain! :friends3::D You hear, poppyshake, there'll be soon another Woolf-ite amongst the ranks! ;):giggle:

 

Hehe. Well, I didn't say it was an accurate stereotype (I wouldn't dare say that on an English forum :o)!

 

Well what's the stereotype, then! You never told me! (Or rather maybe I didn't find your post where you discussed it :blush:)

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What a wonderful review of A Room of One's Own! :) I'm so glad you included a nice long quotation as well. It has helped me to realise that I really needn't be daunted by Virginia Woolf.

I felt the same. I've never read any Woolf, but plan to remedy that in the future, and will be coming here to ask for assistance in where to start. Be prepared!

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I certainly hope I'll be a Woolf-ite, given I have 11 books by her and at least 1 about her. :o One day I'll stop doing that.

 

I thought I had mentioned the stereotype, especially when you mentioned about the English on this forum taking baths, because the stereotype is that they don't bathe. :giggle: Poppyshake mentioned that the English have the same stereotype about the French, which I also hear occasionally.

 

Oh, and I just thought of something! My family were discussing our family history the other day. I'm Irish on my Mum's side and English/Swedish on my Dad's side, but Dad mentioned that we also have Irish ancestry on his side. His evidence? His Mum and Dad apparently called each other (I hope I've got this right) 'dirty Pom' and 'Irish b*stard' as terms of endearment. Bahaha! So that's further evidence of the stereotype. :giggle:

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I certainly hope I'll be a Woolf-ite, given I have 11 books by her and at least 1 about her. :o One day I'll stop doing that.

 

:lol: Good lord Kylie, get reading!! :D

 

I thought I had mentioned the stereotype, especially when you mentioned about the English on this forum taking baths, because the stereotype is that they don't bathe. :giggle: Poppyshake mentioned that the English have the same stereotype about the French, which I also hear occasionally.

 

Oh, I thought it would be something more detailed, sorry! I'd never heard of that. But I do recall some things Michel said about the French on GG.

 

Oh, and I just thought of something! My family were discussing our family history the other day. I'm Irish on my Mum's side and English/Swedish on my Dad's side, but Dad mentioned that we also have Irish ancestry on his side. His evidence? His Mum and Dad apparently called each other (I hope I've got this right) 'dirty Pom' and 'Irish b*stard' as terms of endearment. Bahaha! So that's further evidence of the stereotype. :giggle:

 

Hahahaha :D :D :D Your ancestry rules, Kylie :friends3: I remember how eagerly your Dad told the story about the Barmy Army at the stadium :D

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:lol: Good lord Kylie, get reading!!

 

I'm trying, honest!

 

Oh, I thought it would be something more detailed, sorry! I'd never heard of that. But I do recall some things Michel said about the French on GG.

 

Haha. Sorry to disappoint you!

 

Hahahaha :D Your ancestry rules, Kylie :friends3: I remember how eagerly your Dad told the story about the Barmy Army at the stadium

 

Thank you. :) Ah yes. I can't remember...was it my Dad or a friend of his that got them riled up?

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I'm trying, honest!

 

I believe you :friends3:

 

Thank you. :) Ah yes. I can't remember...was it my Dad or a friend of his that got them riled up?

 

I can't remember either. Maybe both :D

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missperegrine.jpg

 

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children - Ransom Riggs

 

Amazon's Synopsis: A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. And a strange collection of very curious photographs. It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children who once lived here—one of whom was his own grandfather—were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a desolate island for good reason. And somehow—impossible though it seems—they may still be alive.

 

Review: This is quite unique, Ransom takes a collection of real (unconnected) vintage photographs and weaves a story around them and for the most part it works fabulously well. There are just one or two photo's which jar .. in that I felt he was stretching credibility a bit to include them convincingly in the storyline (and the more the book went on the more I thought it) but I'm being incredibly picky because all in all it was wonderful and quite amazing. The photo's themselves are purposefully bizarre .. often featuring odd children doing odd things (I'll put a pic in to give you a flavour) and they're all the more creepy because they were taken in the days when photo manipulation was scarce and so you don't automatically suspect trickery. It became a bit of a treat to turn the page because whenever a peculiar child/event was being talked about .. you knew a pic would follow.

 

 

ransomriggs.jpg

I loved the story ... to me it felt like The Book of Lost Things though I'm not sure why as the storylines are not that similar. They do both have one foot in WW2 and then the other foot in goodness knows where although Miss Peregrine ... also has another foot in the present day (yes a weird three footed creature :D) and the main characters are both suspected of being slightly doo-lally (just because adults :rolleyes: would rather not face the fact that there ARE monsters out there). Plenty of imagination ... you don't really need to use your own (phew!) because Ransom fills it with his. The characters felt very real to me, I especially liked Miss Peregrine and the peculiar children .. you start off being more than a little afraid of them (the children anyway) but that passes as you become familiar with their extremely odd ways. I was a little concerned about their dialogue at times .. coming from 1940's Wales as they did they seemed to be able to speak fluent 21st century but then they had had contact with the future so that could account for it .. 'snogging' though?? .. did that exist in the 1940's? .. I mean the word not the act .. and then 'hot' as in 'hot girl' and 'horning in on his game'? ... though these expressions were used by Jacob they were understood and not questioned by the kids (these are not words however for you to judge the book by ... it's not Fifty Shades of Grey :D)

 

It has some quite delicious twists .. I'm not particularly quick at seeing them coming I know but all the same they gave me the shivers. And there were shades of (no not grey ... you've got a one track mind :D) The Lord of the Rings .. as concerned the baddies and also the ending .. surely there's a sequel coming?

I was reminded of Sam & Frodo sailing off into the unknown, facing terrible foes in an effort to restore good to the world and not knowing whether they would ever return.

 

Very clever, intriguing and engrossing .. books like these practically read themselves (though give them another from your TBR pile and they're not interested :D)

 

9/10

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Looks like another one for my wishlist Poppy.

It is a 'young adult' book Brian .. I meant to say that and didn't .. though it may have been obvious from the plotline. Do you read many YA books?

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Wow Poppy

THAT was a super good review. I've not had the pleasure of dealing with Virginia myself yet. Sadly, I dont think I've read anything by her.

It certainly sounds like she got quite a rise out of you and hit a nerve .She must be a very good writer to be able to show us TODAY how badly we would have had it if we had been born a hundred or more years ago .

I guess I'm like you, I dont ever really think about things like that or pay much attention to them,but as you said, we dont really have it in our faces about how low class we are or how we dont deserve the exact same things in life that men do .

Wonderful job,and see there, your reviews are picking up speed :)

Thanks Julie :D Virginia can be a bit of a trial .. she can tie your head in a knot and leave you wanting a lie down but I find her fascinating and so don't mind putting in the extra effort. She's not everyones cup of tea but if anyone's thinking of tackling her this would be a good one to start with because she only has one foot in her stream of consciousness :D

I can't really imagine a world whereby I had to walk two paces behind the hubster :D and defer to everything he says :D :D I feel sure I would explode with indignation .. but then no .. that's all I would be expecting. Oh I'm just thinking of all the cr*ppy films I'd have had to sit through if I didn't get a say at the cinema (I get ALL the say actually because the alternative is a lot of unreasonable moaning and tutting :D) .. and I'd be made to wear all those skimpy clothes he points at in the shops :giggle: oh my, thank you Aphra/Emmeline et al ... you've saved me from a fate worse .. not to mention pneumonia :D

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It is a 'young adult' book Brian .. I meant to say that and didn't .. though it may have been obvious from the plotline. Do you read many YA books?

 

I haven't read any although I have The Book Thief on my TBR and I'm lead to believe that it is a YA book. As long as the story is a good one I don't mind what the book is classified as.

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The Pied Piper: I'm so happy you liked this novel, it was such a dear read! They don't make 'em like this anymores.

I also love the cover art, it's beautiful.

Yes all the Vintage Shute books are beautiful and if they're anything like this one it'll be a pleasure to read them as well as look at them :smile:

I never got to reading this book for the Reading Circle, unfortunately, but I've heard so many great things about the novel (I think Lauraloves wrote a great review on it, for example) that I do want to read it at some point. And you seemed to really like it, too. Oh, silly me, it was a re-read for you.

It's long been a favourite and I think you will like it but I'm not sure .. not everyone did on the Reading Circle and Janet had already read it and hated it .. so, though I never would have thought it, it's a marmite book and you may well be pulling your vegemite face when you read it :D

When you get around to this, can I please come and visit?! :D Ooooh, could we do a test run before you open it up for customers? Have some of us great folk here on BCF come over and stay for a few days, weeks, a few months possibly, to see if the place is suitable and lovely and all livable, so you could go into business? :giggle2:

Ooooh! It could be a safe retreat for people who've lost their mojos!! Fancy that! :o

Wouldn't that be nice .. we should ALL have futures and businesses and jobs that revolve around books :smile: You can of course come and stay in my cottage .. I definitely need to test it out on you guys. I trust you all implicitly of course .. I am not putting How I Live Now on my cottage bookshelf because the Mistress knows best .. I can't afford a) for her to see it there (she nearly exploded talking about it :D) and b) for anyone else to read it and have the same allergic reaction .. feedback is everything.

I so wants a copy of this someday!

You will love it I'm sure :smile:

That was a brilliant find, I'm so pleased for you!! And what a bargain, too

Yay .. I was so happy I nearly asked them if they were certain :D silly people didn't know what treasure they had in the shop :D .. to them it was only 'a book'.

 

I haven't read any although I have The Book Thief on my TBR and I'm lead to believe that it is a YA book. As long as the story is a good one I don't mind what the book is classified as.

I agree totally .. but never mind Miss Peregrine .. you MUST read The Book Thief .. one is great but the other is exceptional :smile:

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Great review of Miss Peregrine, I wasn't aware it is a YA book, I didn't think it read it such...it was a really fantastic book and I think it could appeal to anyone who likes a quirky read! :)

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What a wonderful review of A Room of One's Own! :) I'm so glad you included a nice long quotation as well. It has helped me to realise that I really needn't be daunted by Virginia Woolf.

As I was just saying, this is the one to start with Kylie .. it's very Virginia but a bit more reader friendly (not that I'm an expert .. just going on what I've read of hers so far) and the subject of course is fascinating. You soon get used to her rhythms and then it's pretty much plain sailing (as long as you are wearing waterproofs and a lifejacket ;):D)

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Great review of Miss Peregrine, I wasn't aware it is a YA book, I didn't think it read it such...it was a really fantastic book and I think it could appeal to anyone who likes a quirky read! :)

Yes .. it's definitely crossover .. and like you I think it would appeal to anyone who likes an adventure story .. a weird adventure story obviously :D

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Poppyshake friendly sci-fi? Oh dear! I think I might have to look the book up :D It might be frankie friendly, too!

I understood it frankie :o hardly anything fazed me. I'm still in shock :D

This title's been here and there and everywhere these days, I absolutely must add it to my wishlist after having read your superb review on it :smile2: Thanks!

Yes it's everywhere and sometimes you read those 'everywhere' books and they disappoint but this one didn't. I hope you like it.

And yet another excellent review! I loved reading what you made of the book in terms with how your own life is. Feminism should't be about growing balls and going equal on men in that way, but being allowed to be the sort of women we are and respected as equals.

I bet there are a million things we do and experience every day that our foremothers :D would never have dreamt of.

I can't remember if we've discussed Moran's book before, but I think Lucybird (?) reviewed the book some time ago and I had to add it to my wishlist. And this leads to another book: Do not ask me why, but I was watching Rachael Ray's show some time ago (okay, I'll tell you, I don't want anyone thinking I watch that show religiously! I was changing the channels to see what was on, I don't like her show, it makes me cringe and she makes me cringe, but they were discussing a book, so I had to listen for a while!), and they were talking about What French Women Know by Debra Ollivier:

"It's not the shoes, the scarves, or the lipstick that gives French women their allure. It's this: French women don't give a damn. They don't expect men to understand them. They don't care about being liked or being like everyone else. They accept the passage of time, celebrate the immediacy of pleasure, embrace ambiguity and imperfection, and prefer having a life to making a living. In "What French Women Know," Debra Ollivier goes beyond stale ooh- la-la stereotypes, challenging ingrained notions about sex, love, marriage, motherhood, and everything in between. With savvy, provocative thinking from French mistresses and maidens alike, Ollivier presents a refreshing counterpoint to the tired love dogma of our times, and offers realistic, liberating alternatives from the land that knows how to love."

What Ollivier said about the book on the show was illuminating and I had to add the book on my wishlist. I've been meaning to tell you about the book because you are soon traveling to France and I thought it might interest you!

It does indeed interest me :D I am adding that one to my wishlist quick smart. Oh to be French .. they've got it all sussed .. they don't change for anybody but I had to laugh at the book I've been reading at bedtime (Almost French) .. it's a true story about an Australian girl living in France .. her bf was aghast one day when she wanted to pop to the bakers in what he called her .. 'pantalons de jogging' :D they just don't do it there .. they don't ever slum it. He said it would be 'not nice for the baker' :D Lord you can go to the shops in anything here and hardly anyone would bat an eyelid. Some of my outfits Alan describes as 'a wizard pretending to be a muggle' :D The French would NOT approve. I am having a bit of a crisis about my French wardrobe actually .. I am trying to sort out all my decent and vaguely tailored things so as not to cause the poor Parisian women migraines .. what with that and the not eating ALL your food it's a nightmare (well I'm sorry but I'm shovelling those macaroons down .. for one thing they look delish for another they are horrendously expensive .. I would add stuff about my hate of waste but that would be totally disingenuous here if I'm honest.) The Parisians are going to have to look the other way .. I will try and limit the shocks though. My sister says you must wear sensible shoes .. the streets are cobbled etc .. sensible shoes!?! .. they'll put me straight on the Eurostar back home.

Caitlin's book is marvellous .. I must review soon.

Interesting that Emmeline Pankhurst is mentioned! I'd heard of her name on this forum, I didn't know anything about her but the name stuck in my mind, and some time later, quite coincidentally, I found a copy of her biography in the free book exchange trolley at the library and had to get it. It's a rather tiny book, I don't know what it'll be like, but I will read it anyways. If you would happen to be interested in it, I could send it to you after I read it myself.

I would love to read it frankie .. thank you *hugs* I imagine it will be very interesting, I don't know as much about her as I should.

Oh. And if Room of One's Own wasn't already on my wishlist, your review would've totally made me want to add it!

I am more confident about you liking this one .. she talks so much sense but in a very entertaining way .. she gives you so much to think about. I wish I had been at those lectures (well apart from the fact that I'd be dead now that is :D)

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Waterstone's Synopsis: It's a good time to be a woman: we have the vote and the Pill, and we haven't been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain...Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should we use Botox? Do men secretly hate us? And why does everyone ask you when you're going to have a baby? Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin answers the questions that every modern woman is asking.

 

Review: Laugh? .. I nearly did myself an injury but I'm a bit wary of recommending it because it's not going to appeal to everyone. Men for instance might find it a little too anti .. though mostly it's just banter and she is at pains to point out that indeed she loves men (she just wants more choice .. more variety for women in the world .. I can't imagine she wants more say though .. that would be impossible :D) Others might find it offensive and crass or a little too graphic. It really does depend on your humour and how easily you're offended. She tells her editor 'I want to write a book about feminism! A funny, but polemic, book about feminism! Like 'The Female Eunuch' - but with jokes about my knickers!' and that just about sums it up.

 

She was born a little after me so her cultural references aren't exactly mine but there were still plenty of bells ringing (very British bells that is .. though I don't think it's exclusive). Some parts are better than others .. she SHOUTS a lot in a ranty way and she rambles but to object to either would be hypocrisy of the highest order :D There were a few unwise jokes which made me uncomfortable but I just flinched and moved on, after all it's not a crime to offend someone and it's all subjective after all. I didn't really like her constant use of the word 'patriarchy' .. but perhaps that was more tongue in cheek than I took it for initially.

 

Those are the gripes, which on the whole were minor. The positives were that she has a wicked sense of humour and it was .. it really was .. laugh out loud funny. I read bits out constantly and even the cat smiled which is a first this year.

 

I'll put the quotes in spoiler tags so that you can read as many or as few or none as you like .. it's just to give you a taste of the humour (though I left all the really rude bits out .. my fingers won't type it .. even though my eyes will read it :D).

 

You know when it comes to sex, you really have to remember men are blessedly forgiving creatures. They don't care what kind of knickers you're wearing. By the time you've taken your skirt off, you could be wearing a Gregg's paper bag with leg holes torn in it, and it wouldn't put them off. THERE ARE MEN OUT THERE HAVING SEX WITH BICYCLES. Men don't remotely care if you're wearing sexy pants or not.

 

At 35, my breasts are, still, like peaches. But the kind of peaches you will find in the bottom of your handbag - after you'd forgotten you'd put them there, for a snack. Peaches that have the obvious indentation mark of your keys on one end, and a bus ticket stuck to the sticky bit. The kind of peaches you'd look doubtfully at in a market, 10 for £1, and say 'I suppose I could make smoothies out of them' ...

 

These days sexism is a bit like Meryl Streep in a new film: sometimes you don't recognise it straightaway. You can be up to 20 minutes in, enjoying all the dinosaurs and the spaceflights and the homesick Confederate soldiers, before you go, 'Oh my God .. under the wig! THAT'S MERYL.

 

So when women fret over what to wear in the morning, it's not because we want to be an international style icon. We're not trying to be Victoria Beckham - not least because there's a gigantic pile of toast downstairs with our name on it, and we've cracked a smile in the last fortnight.

 

But now it seems you find 'the dress' - but then 'the dress' must have 'the belt', and a complimentary but not overly matching bag must be found, which works with not only the correct hosiery but also something to 'throw over', if you become chilly. It's like f***ing Dragons Quest - an endless list of things you've got to run around finding; possibly in a cave, or under a sage. The thing you "throw over" can't be an anorak, or a picnic rug, salvaged from under the stairs, by the way, but a deconstructed cardigan, hacking style jacket, £200 pashmina, or a 'shrug', which unfamiliar item seems, to my untrained eyes, to be a shrunken cardigan made by a fool. It all looks bl**dy knackering. It's going to cut into my bread-and-butter-pudding making time severely.

 

Also, bear this in mind, ladies - the phrasing 'the best day of your life'. Yes the best day of your life: the bride. Not anyone else's. Let's face it - from time immemorial, the groom has quietly not given a sh*t about the event, from beginning to end. If you want to plunge a grown man into a combination of deep despair and barely repressed panic, simply talk to him, for a minute or more, about table arrangements, boutonnières, flower girls' shoes, marquees, the hiring of a castle, what Madonna did for her wedding, and whether or not you should have a colonic a week before to look 'fresh faced'.

 

If you haven't laughed or even smiled at any of those bits then it's not going to be up your alley because it's, more or less, more of the same with bells on. Opinion is fairly divided over this book and it does seem to depend on whether you find her funny or not .. her column in 'The Times' is not an indicator because many people who love that hate this. Though it's littered with humour there are some quite serious and touching bits which allow you to get under her skin more. If you think you'd like it but are in doubt, borrow it from the library .. or me .. I'll happily send it out :smile: It would be good to get more opinions.

 

9/10

Edited by poppyshake

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