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January 2019



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garden journal

June Books and Gardening


Lord Roworth’s Reward, Carola Dunn
The World of Arthur Ransome , Christina Hardyment
A Room Full of Bones, Elly Griffiths
Dying Fall, Elly Griffiths
The Brother of Daphne, Dornford Yates
The Third Wife , Lisa Jewell
Captain Ingram’s Inheritance, Carola Dunn
Striding Folly, Dorothy L Sayers
The Vet’s Daughter, Barbara Comyns
Blood Count, Robert Goddard
A Place for Us Part 1, Harriet Evans
The Courts of Idleness, Dornford Yates

Wimbledon and gardening have eaten into my reading time this month. Speaking of gardening, why does it never rain on me? It rains at Wimbledon. It rains in Poole, just a few miles away. We never get a drop. It’s pretty hot here today and I thought I’d just do a little deadheading and weeding. Hah! Weeding was impossible because you literally cannot get a hand fork into the baked soil. That’s how bad it is but do gardeners get any sympathy? No. Everyone raves about the wonderful weather. Grump over, now for the books.

I mentioned last month my disappointment with Carola Dunn’s Regency novels compared with her Daisy Dalrymple stories. Lord Roworth really dragged. I followed it up with Captain Ingram’s Inheritance, only to find that the first third of the book was a rehash of events already described in the previous episode. So I skimmed. I shall be giving these away again. It was partly discontentment with them which sent me to the library in search of something gripping. Hurrah! I got two books by Elly Griffiths. I’ve written before about how much I like these crime stories featuring forensic archaeologist Ruth Galloway. The library finds were as good as the rest and I’ve now read all but the very first one. Another gripping tale was Blood Count, by the ever reliable Robert Goddard. A renowned surgeon had once saved the life of a man who turned out to be a vicious war criminal. Now the deed, performed for money, comes back to bite him and he finds himself in a world where human life counts for little and nothing is quite what it seems.

I meant to write a separate review of The Vet’s Daughter but never got round to it. It’s a horrifying story about a young girl with a violent, bullying father, whose lack of care puts her into danger. I liked it a lot but am shocked now to find that I simply cannot remember how it ends!* I don’t think that matters too much because for me the important thing about Barbara Comyn’s books is the distinctive and beguiling style. Striding Folly was my only find at the Folk Festival charity book sale. It’s a book of short stories about Lord Peter Wimsey which, unaccountably, I’d never read before. I hadn’t missed much as I didn’t think they were very good.

My bedtime Dornford Yates re-read continues. I wonder how long it will take me to get through the lot? One or two stories are just the right length before I fall asleep. My current reading is Miss Garnet’s Angel by Salley Vickers. It’s very slow but I don’t mind, as that suits the story.

*Edit: I've remembered it all. Very dramatic!


Wimbledon and gardening have eaten into my reading...
That has kept me busy as well. So, Murray is out but he's not playing at his very best and beating people in the top 10 so no surprise.

We are generally a very dry region and I was relieved that we had some rain last weekend. I hope you get some soon, preferably at night!
Rain at night? Perfect!

Watching Today at Wimbledon now and it's promisingly dark.
Oh! Sorry, did I spoil the Murray tennis result? I was thinking you'd have watched it live :/

I hope it rains tonight for you :)
No worries, I knew the result!

No rain :-(



The Comyns is so striking and brilliant, I think - one of her very best. And a bizarre ending!
Simon T

Re: Comyns

Yes indeed! I find her writing fascinating.