Monthly Archives: July 2014

July Books

Non-fiction 6 (YTD 35) Napoleon Bonaparte for Little Historians, by Bou Bounoider Ireland Under The Tudors vol 2, by Richard Bagwell How Languages are Learned, by Patsy M. Lightbown and Nina Spada Ireland Under The Tudors vol 3, by Richard … Continue reading

1 Comment

Links I found interesting for 31-07-2014

1936: Guinness Nazi Germany advertising posters (Never actually used.)(tags: germany history )

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 31-07-2014

Asquith’s notes, 31 July 1914

We had a Cabinet at 11 and a very interesting discussion, especially about the neutrality of Belgium and the point upon which everything will ultimately turn – are we to go in or stand aside? Of course everybody longs to … Continue reading

1 Comment

There are less than 34 hours left to vote for the Hugos. This is how some people are voting.

Both last year and in 2011 I did a survey of how bloggers had declared that they would vote for the four written fiction categories of the Hugo awards. I have done a similar survey for this year, presented below. … Continue reading

Comments Off on There are less than 34 hours left to vote for the Hugos. This is how some people are voting.

Wednesday reading

Current With The Light… vol 7, by Keiko Tobe The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, by Mark Twain μ1 Vernon God Little, by DBC Pierre The Life of John Buncle, Esq: Containing Various Observations and Reflections, Made in Several Parts of … Continue reading

1 Comment

Two books I won’t finish

I tried both of these on the ferry on Sunday, and bounced off both less than 20 pages in. July Books 18) The Essence of Christianity, by Ludwig Feuerbach Writing about a subject I am only vaguely interested in terms … Continue reading

Comments Off on Two books I won’t finish

July Books 17) Billionaire Boy, by David Walliams      

A book for kids about a boy whose father is a billionaire due to inventing a new type of toilet paper, and how difficult it is to find normality. Shockingly misogynistic – there isn’t a single sympathetic female character – … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 17) Billionaire Boy, by David Walliams      

Links I found interesting for 30-07-2014

NASA records sounds in space Wow.(tags: astronomy space ) The western front in the first world war and now Stepping back in time.(tags: photos history ) The Banbridge Battalion Low-level conflict, 1913-1920.(tags: northernireland )

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 30-07-2014

Asquith’s notes, 30 July 1914

We had another turn of the kaleidoscope today. I was sitting in the Cabinet room with a map of Ulster and a lot of statistics about populations and religions, endeavouring to get into something like shape my speech on the … Continue reading

Comments Off on Asquith’s notes, 30 July 1914

July Books 16) Rogue Queen, by L. Sprague de Camp

A planet where human beings, for some reason, have started to behave like bees (as far as this is convenient for what the author wants to do with the plot): rival queens duel to the death in naked single combat, … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 16) Rogue Queen, by L. Sprague de Camp

July Books 15) The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox, by Maggie O’Farrell

A short but intense book about family histories echoing and suddenly climaxing across the decades, with Esme and her great-niece Iris suddenly discovering each other’s existence and forced to navigate two different generations’ poisoned sibling relationships. Esme is a particularly … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 15) The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox, by Maggie O’Farrell

Ireland Under the Tudors, by Richard Bagwell (three volumes)

The magisterial work on late 16th century Ireland, originally published in 1885-90 and now available from iTunes (vol 1, vol2, vol 3). I’ve already read a lot of the later literature on the period, so it’s interesting to look at … Continue reading

Comments Off on Ireland Under the Tudors, by Richard Bagwell (three volumes)

Links I found interesting for 29-07-2014

Orban Says He Seeks to End Liberal Democracy in Hungary Yes, really.(tags: hungary ) Former UKIP councillor stands again for “Blonde, Curly Hair, Grey Eyes” Party.(tags: ukpolitics funny ) Was Jimi Hendrix Kicked Off a Monkees Tour? No, they parted … Continue reading

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 29-07-2014

Asquith’s notes, 29 July 1914

The Amending Bill and the whole Irish business are, of course, put into the shade by the coming war, for it now seems as if nothing but a miracle will avert it. After dinner I went across to E[dward] Grey … Continue reading

Comments Off on Asquith’s notes, 29 July 1914

Links I found interesting for 28-07-2014

So What Gives? (About Tolerance) Nailing the “intolerant liberals” lie.(tags: philosophy politics ) When it comes to our welfare system, we’ve lost the plot Finding a better narrative.(tags: ukpolitics )

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 28-07-2014

July Books 12) Crash, by J.G. Ballard

Gosh. Difficult to know where to start or finish with this very disturbing book about a group of people who are brought together by their sexual interest in car crashes. It’s very grittily and credibly set in West London; the … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 12) Crash, by J.G. Ballard

July Books 11) Doctor Who: Cybermen Monster File

A rather impressive little ebook from the BBC, downloadable from here – free to people in the UK until 31 July, the rest of us have to pay. Gavin Collinson has assembled the usual material, complete with video clips from … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 11) Doctor Who: Cybermen Monster File

Links I found interesting for 27-07-2014

What Are You Reading? – Carnegie Europe Summer tips.(tags: books ) The Devil’s Crown: The Mystery and Majesty of a Lost BBC Series Will be looking out for this.(tags: history )

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 27-07-2014

July Books 10) Plastic Jesus, by Wayne Simmons

A novel set in a near future, in a city supposedly on the Pacific coast of America but in fact closely based on Belfast (neighbourhoods called the Queen’s Quarter, Titanic, the Village, Tomb Street), where mobsters and programmers recreate Jesus, … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 10) Plastic Jesus, by Wayne Simmons

July Books 9) The Book of the Still, by Paul Ebbs

I thought this was a rather good Eighth Doctor adventure, with Team Tardis getting caught up in a complex struggle between time travellers seeking the eponymous artefact, the Doctor, Fitz and Anji each being subjected to separate but entertainingly appropriate … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 9) The Book of the Still, by Paul Ebbs

Links I found interesting for 26-07-2014

Virtual Sea Odyssey – The Burgess Shale Glorious.(tags: biology fossils ) Key MH17 Crash Suspect Linked to Massacre of 3,000 Bosnian Muslims in 1992 Igor Strelkov’s past.(tags: bosnia russia ukraine ) How to turn Barbies into Doctor Who Weeping Angels … Continue reading

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 26-07-2014

Asquith’s notes, 26 July 1914

No one can say what is going to happen in the East of Europe. The news this morning is that Servia has capitulated on the main point, but it is very doubtful if any reservation will be accepted by Austria, … Continue reading

1 Comment

July Books 8) Brussel in beeldekes: Mannekin Pis en andere sjarels

A collection of fifteen short comic strip stories about Brussels, funded by the Flemish Independent Guild of Comic Strips (yes, it exists) and the Flemish Brussels Cultural Cell (yes, it exists too) and edited by Marc Verhaegen (who we have … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 8) Brussel in beeldekes: Mannekin Pis en andere sjarels

July Books 7) How Languages are Learned, by Patsy M. Lightbown and Nina Spada

A textbook mainly for language teachers (which I am not), from which I got two interesting things. The first is that it’s amazing how little we actually know. Even the apparently obvious point that children find it easier to learn … Continue reading

1 Comment

Links I found interesting for 25-07-2014

Can You Speak Commission? The Brussels dialect of the young folk!(tags: eu )

Comments Off on Links I found interesting for 25-07-2014

July Books 6) So Vile a Sin, by Ben Aaronovitch and Kate Orman

So, poor old Roz, eh? Having done due service to the Seventh Doctor for 18 books, she dies in battle defending her high-powered family, one of whom is an even closer relative than she first seems, against a peculiar shape-shifting … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 6) So Vile a Sin, by Ben Aaronovitch and Kate Orman

July Books 5) The Lacuna, by Barbara Kingsolver

I very much got into this story of a young American in Mexico who ends up working for Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, is present at the murder of Trotsky, moves to the USA (where in fact he has not … Continue reading

Comments Off on July Books 5) The Lacuna, by Barbara Kingsolver

Links I found interesting for 24-07-2014

Alastair Campbell – why I love Jacques Brel @campbellclaret shows good taste.(tags: music ) Behind the Scenes in Putin’s Court Excellent piece by Ben.(tags: russia ) Flight MH17: Putin’s disasters Another piece by Ben.(tags: russia ukraine ) The Spanish government … Continue reading

1 Comment

Asquith’s notes, 24 July 1914

At 3.15 we had a cabinet, where there was a lot of talk about Ulster, but the real interest was Grey’s statement of the European situation, which is about as bad as it could be. Austria has sent a bullying … Continue reading

Comments Off on Asquith’s notes, 24 July 1914

Wednesday reading

Current The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox, by Maggie O’Farrell The Lies of Locke Lamora, by Scott Lynch Last books finished η1 [Doctor Who] So Vile a Sin, by Ben Aaronovitch and Kate Orman How Languages are Learned, by Patsy … Continue reading

Comments Off on Wednesday reading