Books I read

Book I Read: Twisted: The Girl who uncovered Rumpelstiltskin’s Name by Bonnie M Hennessy

Description on Amazon

The mystery of Rosamund Hodge’s Crimson Bound meets the romance of the best Beauty and the Beast retellings.

An old tale tells the story of how a little man named Rumpelstiltskin spun straw into gold and tricked a desperate girl into trading away her baby. But that’s not exactly how it happened.

The real story began with a drunken father who kept throwing money away on alcohol and women, while his daughter, Aoife, ran the family farm on her own. When he gambled away everything they owned to the Duke, it was up to her to spin straw into gold to win it all back.

With her wits and the help of a magical guardian, she outsmarted the Duke and saved the day.

Well almost…

Her guardian suddenly turned on Aoife and sent her on a quest to find his name, the clues to which were hidden deep in the woods, a moldy dungeon, and a dead woman’s chamber.

Her feelings for one of the men who tricked her from the start threaten to complicate everything. Not the tale of a damsel in distress, this is the story of a tenacious, young woman who solved a mystery so great that not even the enchanted man who spun straw into gold could figure it out.

Not until Aoife came along.

What says I
This was an eerie book. And Rumpelstiltskin is an eerie character. So in my mind it's a success!
But seriously though. This book is an expansion on the ultimate notorious devil in all fiction land. But, and this is where my skin crawls, Ms Hennessy manages to make this revolting character human. I couldn't help but feel sorry of him, take pity on him or cry for him. She manages to let me loath other characters for their cruelty or their betrayal.
Enter a few scenes back the protagonist Aoife. I immediately admired her strength and her tenacity both in the time that she lived in this fantasy time and both with her lot. At some stage I was a bit confused with her strength being real or just being a farce but then I realized that she's one of those rare creatures whose strength is not necessary in their boldness or their coldness but actually in their resilience and their determination. Something M Hennessy showed beautifully as Aoife developed. By the way, I love her name.
That brings me to Ronan. I did not appreciate this character at all. He felt a bit underdeveloped and flimsy. But in the end I grew to appreciate his role. In that sense the writer managed to focus her story on Aoife and Rumpelstiltskin.
I loved this book. Overall a different twist on one of the world' most famous of evil! It is a slow book but justifies a double read. Loads of information is built into the story with twists and turns round every corner.
If you're a fan of this old fantasy, read this. If you're a fan of the series Once Upon A Time, I think this book will be a hit.

What says others

Amy S Brown gave it a five star rating. And Wonderfully Awkward also liked it.

Where to find the author
The author has a Facebook page for the book where you can chat with her. Or find all her other social media outlets on her website.

Where to find the Book
The ebook is available on Amazon for free at the moment. Also find it at Barnes and Nobel, iBooks and Kobo. I couldn't find an Audible audiobook but Amazon has the audiobook option.

Thanks for visiting
Until next time!

Books I read

Book I Read: When We Were Very Young by AA Milne

Description on Amazon

A classic celebration of childhood, A. A. Milne’s When We Were Very Young is a collection of poems that have touched the hearts of readers for more than 90 years. His verses sing with a playful innocence, weaving together the worlds of reality and enchanting make-believe. Published two years before Winnie-the-Pooh, careful readers will also discover the very first appearance of the Best Bear in All the World. These treasured poems are perfectly matched by Ernest Shepard's whimsical illustrations, which have delighted countless readers.

These poems have been read and re-read to generations of children, and today, they can still find a cherished place on every bookshelf.

What says I
I adore this book. I think that says enough…but I do feel oblige to share more!! Humor me!
This book as well as the others in this series, should be on every parent's list to read for their children. I never heard these poems until I read it to my kiddos. And we all loved it. Still do!
The writer captured our imaginations with his silly characters and their innocent adventures. Our edition is simply illustrated which allowed all of us the chance to go off on our own tangents in our minds.
My favorite of poems in this book has to be 'Buckingham Palace'! We memorized every one of the 6 verses. Watch this video from 1941 of the poem set to music:

What says others
Readings also loved this book. And The Book Bag also loved it. And Lost in a Book reminded me that we celebrated the 90th anniversary just the other day.

Where to find the author
The author is long since not with us anymore but I love the different ways people keep him alive such as this page from The Lovelys. I do believe this is illegal though but Alison Pask put the whole book up as a downloadable.
AA Milne's country home was up for sale a while ago. This made my imagination run wild! BBC claimed here that the writer and his son saw Winnie the Pooh as a curse. How sad.
Wikipedia and Biography both have some more information about the writer and his career.

Where to find the book
Buy this collection of poems from Amazon or Bookdepository. I bought my copy from Takealot.

That is it for today. Thanks for visiting until next time.

Books I read

Book I Read: Relentless by Karen Lynch

Description on Amazon

Sara Grey’s world shattered ten years ago when her father was brutally murdered. Now at seventeen, she is still haunted by memories of that day, and driven by the need to understand why it happened. She lives a life full of secrets, and her family and friends have no idea of the supernatural world she is immersed in or of Sara’s very powerful gift.

In her quest for answers about her father’s death, Sara takes risks that expose her and her friends to danger, and puts herself into the sights of a sadistic vampire. On the same fateful night she meets Nikolas, a warrior who turns Sara’s world upside down, and who is determined to protect her even if it’s the last thing she wants.

Sara’s life starts to spin out of control as she is hunted by an obsessed vampire, learns that her friends have secrets of their own, and reels from the truth about her own ancestry. Sara has always been fiercely independent, but in order to survive now she must open herself to others, to reveal her deepest secrets. And she must learn to trust the one person capable of breaking down the walls around her.

** This book has language that may be offensive to some readers.

What says I
Firstly, I am not a YA fan. I am a passionate fantasy and historical fiction reader. This book however banged the young adult genre right open for me. In this first book in the series, the protagonist is usually an extremely annoying character for me. But Sara is just adorable. She's strong, fiercely independent, a bit weird and pulls on one's heartstrings. I also think she's one of those people that deserves the sympathy but never craves or accepts it.
Then there's Nicolas. He's incredibly annoying and overbearing but quickly grows on one. Sara and Nicolas' story speeds up very quickly from there.
Ms Lynch is an incredible writer. She writes fast and tight prose with an acceptance that her audience will color in the story as they go. I am a fan of beautiful prose but I've found that YA does not require much description. The writer however, cleverly uses the senses to describe her setting, the characters and the situations.
Another thing I appreciated about this book is that the writer set this book in our world. A place you can pinpoint on our modern day maps and even walk through on Google!
Overall I loved this book. It for me hooked on YA and have become the yardstick for all YA novels in my library.

What says others
Papers Pens & Peridot made me shake my head in agreement all the way. And I agree with Kirkus Reviews that this story is definitely more action than romance. Horse and Reading gushed over this book and Pretty Opinionated agreed. I think it is therefore unanimous!

Where to find the author
Karen Lynch is probably one of the most approachable authors I've ever come across. So visit her website or connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We are the Mohiri is her thriving tribe on Facebook for all fans of her series.

Where to find this book
The ebook is free on Amazon and also where I found it. Bookdepository stocks it as well as well as iBooks. I've never listened to the audiobook but you can buy it on Audible.

And that is it from me.

Until next time!

Books I read

Book I Read: The Abominable Mr Darcy

Description from Amazon

Mr. Darcy was an enigma… until he spoke. Then, he was the enemy.

Miss Elizabeth Bennet's eyes are instantly drawn towards a handsome, mysterious guest who arrives at the Meryton Assembly with the Bingley party. The gentleman destroys her illusions by delivering an insult that turns him from Mr. Divinely Attractive to the Abominable Mr. Darcy.

While Elizabeth sets in motion her strategy for retaliation, Darcy plans to win the campaign being waged in the genteel drawing rooms of Hertfordshire. As more players from Jane Austen's beloved cast of characters enter the fray, complications arise–some with irreversible consequences. Can a truce be called before their hearts become casualties as well? How many times can two people go from enemies to friends and back again before it's too late?

What says I
I am a devoted fan of Jane Austen and her writings. Pride and Prejudice in its US movie format as well as BBC series format have my devoted praise. I am however apprehensive of variations. But then again, Romeo and Juliette's movie adaptation with Claire Danes and Leonardo Di Caprio was just amazing! I digress. Back to Jane Austen.
Being in the mood for a historic novel, The Abominable Mr Darcy was featured on Goodreads last week. I downloaded it and started reading. Apprehensively. But the author, Joy Dawn King, is amazing! Her writing just captivated me. Her formal way of writing and sketching the characters, their setting, the circumstances was just so vivid and real that I was hooked.
Miss King managed to bring Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennett alive! Mr Darcy felt like so much more human to me than Jane Austen managed to do for me. Not only did Darcy and Elizabeth's story capture my heart but the honorable Colonel Richard and Charlotte Lucas. My heart always ached for those two characters in Miss Austen rendition. Miss King did them justice.
That brings me to Mr Collins. Now that is a sorry excuse for a man. I loath this character. In the movie, the series, the book. J Dawn King managed to make him and even more pompous prick, a fool without measure and despicable! Now that was buckets full of venom! Apologies for that.
All in all, loved this book. I seldom give ratings but this book deserves 10/5 stars. I loved the writer's style of word choice, I loved the characters. The setting stayed true to Jane Austen's book but Miss King brought it to life. She engineered loads of plot twists and kept pulling me deeper and deeper into the story.
The only down side to this book: it felt drawn out. But the curiosity she created in me, made the book too short. So this is not a too big down for me.
I also have to add that there were no excessive smooching. A kiss here on the cheek and there on the hand. I find sex in books disturbing. Especially in historic fiction. But graciously non here.

What says others
Austenesque Reviews agreed that the Colonel was just such a lovely improvement. You will find loads of reviews on Amazon, Goodreads and elsewhere. I've found some interviews with the lovely Ms King but very few interviews elsewhere.

Where to connect with the author
You will find Ms King at her website, Facebook, Goodreads and Fanfiction.

Where to find the book
I bought my copy on Amazon. But find it at Bookdepository or Audible for the audio book. I were unable to find it on Takealot for my South African readers.

And that is it from me.

Thanks for reading!


Words not used very often 01:05

I read daily with my kiddos and by myself. Maybe one day I can say the same about writing…We find many words not very common or familiar to us. Usually, I just grab the dictionary or add it to my personal register of words. (I am however trying to get rid of my paper notes) The WP app is always with me and it will take only a few seconds to type it up when I find it. Starting a while ago, I thought I’d build my record of words week by week here. Some more of our words that made me reach for the dictionary. Enjoy


– in a strong and emotional way (e.g. She blushed and vehemently denied her attraction.)


– (formal noun) 1. the quality of being famous for something considered bad (e.g. Your infamous act of stealing food from children, is nothing to be proud of) 2. a bad and shocking act or event (e.g. The infamy of his adultery was the foundation of the stigma associated with the family.)


– (adjective) 1. wearing a kilt (e.g. The men were proudly kilted in their traditional dress during the parade.) 2. gathered in pleats, pleated (e.g. Part of the winning design was kilted in crisp pleats)


– (noun) a small pan or metal cup (e.g. Grandma invested in a set of pannikin, especially for her grandchildren)


– (verb) make (someone) less angry or hostile (e.g. Protesters will not be placated after the death of yet another youth)


– (verb) to walk from one place to another, often feeling tired or bored (e.g. She traipsed through the library while her bookworm sister drooled over the biographies of people long dead)


– (noun) a straight line between two places (e.g. She made a beeline for the door)


– (noun) 1. (formal) waste material or rubbish, especially left after a particular event (e.g. Detritus littered the park after the New Years celebrations) 2. (specialised) (e.g. a loose mass of decaying material)


– (noun) 1. an old-fashioned gun with a wide mouth that shoots a lot of small metal malls (e.g. The blunderbuss was a popular choice of weapon for both pirates and soldiers) 2. an action or way of doing something regarded as lacking in subtlety and precision (e.g. The old lady blunderbusses all young people based on her own prejudice)


– (noun) the quality of being patient and being able to forgive someone or control yourself in a difficult situation (e.g. Amid the insults flung from the crowd, Humphrey showed forbearance above all other)

And that is it for my list of weird and wonderful words.

Please share some of your unique or seldom used words with me on Twitter.

Until next time!



This month in History

This month in History: August

General events not linked to a date

National Catfish Month (US)

National Panini Month (US)

National Peach Month (US)

National Sandwich Month (US)
National Mustard Day is the First Saturday of August
1914 Louis Botha & Jan Smuts lead South Africa into the war in support of Great Britain against Germany

1914 Digging at the big hole in Kimberley ends, leaving a hole 1.6km in circumference with 14 504 carats of diamonds having been found

1 August

National Raspberry Cream Pie Day (US)

1819 birth Herman Melville writer of Moby-Dick and Billy Budd.

1914 Germany and France Declare War

1936 Berlin Olympics Opens

1936 The SABC (South African Broadcasting Corporation) was formed by an Act of Parliament

1966 University Of Texas Shootings

1981 MTV Debuts

1994 Michael Jackson Marries Lisa Marie Presley

2 August

National Ice-Cream Sandwich Day (US)

1934 Adolf Hitler becomes Germany’s Fuhrer

1943 PT-109 Commanded by Lt. John F. Kennedy Sunk

1964 Gulf of Tonkin Attack On US Destroyer Maddox

1990 Iraq Invades Kuwait

3 August

National Watermelon Day (US)

Picnic Day (AUS)

1492 Columbus Set Sail. Extract from his journals and some homeschool resources!

1914 Germany and France Declare War

1981 US Air Traffic Controllers Strike

4 August

National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day (US)

1782 The 700 ton East India merchant ship “the Grosvenor” runs aground. Write-up about Captain John Coxon and the Grosvenor

1892 The parents of Lizzie Borden found murdered. 9 facts I didn’t know about her

1901 Louis Armstrong’s Birthday. Lance Armstrong House to visit in Nee York! Extensive resources from the Smithsonian for us homeschoolers

1902 Cape Town’s time guns having been moved to Signal Hill, are fired there for the first time. The Lion Battery remains the property of the South African Navy. Big Bang behind the noon guns in CT

1941 Nazi Troops Within 50 miles of Kiev. A post about the ending of the Battle of Kiev and a YouTube video of Kiev

1944 Anne Frank Captured By Germans

1961 Barack Obama’s Birthday. 50 facts I didn’t know about him

1989 The Savings and Loan Crisis (US)

5 August
National Waffle Day (US)

National Oyster Day (US)

1930 Neil Armstrong’s Birthday

6 August

National Root Beer Float Day (US)

1809 Alfred Lord Tennyson’s Birthday

The Eagle

He clasps the crag with crooked hands;
Close to the sun in lonely lands,
Ring’d with the azure world, he stands.
The wrinkled sea beneath him crawls;
He watches from his mountain walls,
And like a thunderbolt he falls.

1881 Alexander Fleming’s Birthday

1926 Gertrude “Trudy” Ederle Swims English Channel

1934 Dust Bowl Drought Continues In Mid West

1945 Nuclear bomb Hiroshima

1957 “American Bandstand” makes its network debut on ABC

1962 Marilyn Monroe was found dead in her bedroom

1965 Voting Rights Act Signed Into Law

1965 Beatles Release the Album “Help!” In UK

1975 Dutch Elm Disease Kills 3 million trees in Britain. Learning from history is evident through the ample research online

1983 At&T Broken Up Lessons learned and still implemented 30 years later

1991 Tim Berners-Lee launches the world wide web

1997 Microsoft Buys Stake in Apple Computers, referred to as the worst deal ever

7 August

National Lighthouse Day (SA)

National IPA Day (US)

Raspberries and Cream Day (US)

International Beer Day

1947 Kon-Tiki Expedition Completes Trip across the Pacific Ocean

1964 Gulf of Tonkin Resolution Passed

1987 Lynn Cox swam the Bering Straight. Interview with her

1998 US Embassies Bombed Kenya

2007 Barry Bonds 756th Home Run

8 August

National Frozen Custard Day (US)

National Zucchini Day (US)

1963 “The Great Train Robbery” UK

1974 Richard Nixon Announces his resignation following the Watergate Scandal During a nationally televised broadcast

1976 First Legionnaire’s Disease Harrisburg, Philadelphia

1988 The Burmese 8888 Uprising

9 August

International Art Appreciation Day

National woman’s day (SA)

National Rice Pudding Day (US)

1925 Ku Klux Klan Mass Meeting Washington 50,000 marchers

1936 Jesse Owens wins fourth gold medal Berlin Olympics

1945 Atom Bomb Dropped On Nagasaki

1956 First Woman’s March in Pretoria

1969 Sharon Tate Found Murdered ( Charles Manson )

10 August

National S’Mores Day (US)

Lazy Day (US)

National Banana Split Day (US)

1874 Herbert Hoover

1897 Automobile Club of Great Britain Formed

1927 Construction began on Mt Rushmore

1945 Truman Announces Japanese Surrender

1954 Construction on the St. Lawrence Seaway began at Massena, New York.

1977 The ” Son Of Sam ” Serial killer David Berkowitz Arrested

1990 Magellan Space Craft Arrives At The Planet Venus

11 August

Play in the Sand Day. (US) Physics of sand castles and Sand Castle Central!

National Panini Day (US)

National Raspberry Tart Day (US)

1929 Babe Ruth first player in the history of baseball to hit 500 home runs

1965 Race riots Watts neighbourhood of Los Angeles, California

1991 911 Emergency Number pioneered in Schaumburg. The chief retired after 42 years in service

1992 Mall of America Opens

12 August

National Julienne Fries Day (US)

1955 Minimum Hourly Wage Raised To $1.00 Per Hour

1964 South Africa Barred from the Olympic Games

1981 IBM Releases It’s First Personal Computer

1990 Tyrannosaurus Rex / Sue Discovered South Dakota

13 August

International Left-Handed Day! Famous left handed people

National Filet Mignon Day (US)

1860 Annie Oakley’s Birthday 10 things you didn’t know about her

1961 East Germany Border Closed To West Germany

1966 China has announced It’s Cultural Revolution

2006 Tokyo Power Blackout

2011 Stages Collapses at Indiana State Fair

14 August

National Creamsicle Day (US)

1935 Social Security Bill Signed Into Law Providing Unemployment Benefit

1945 Truman Announces Japanese Surrender

1947 India and Pakistan Gain Independence

2003 North America Power Outage New York to Canada

15 August

Joke Day (US)

Roller Coaster Day (US)

National Lemon Meringue Pie Day (US)

1898 First Roller Coaster patented

1912 Julia Child’s Birthday

1914 Panama Canal Opens

1965 Beatles Live Concert at Shea Stadium

1965 Los Angeles Watts Riots

1969 Woodstock Music Festival

1998 Omagh Bombing Northern Ireland

16 August

National Rum Day (US)

National Bratwurst Day (US)

1908 Mohandas ‘Mohatma’ Ghandi (a Hindu) leads 3000 Muslims, Hindus and Christians to burn their passes in the courtyard of the Hamidia Mosque in Newtown, Johannesburg

1977 Elvis Presley Dies Of Heart Attack

2002 Dresden, Germany Flooding

17 August

National Vanilla Custard Day (US)

1786 Davy Crockett (Died 1836)

1962 East German Border Guards Kill Peter Fechter

1969 Hurricane Camille Make Landfall Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 45 photos from that storm

1969 Woodstock Music Festival Ends

1998 President Clinton acknowledged he had an inappropriate relationship with Monica Lewinsky

18 August

Bad Poetry Day (US) What is bad poetry?

National Ice Cream Pie Day (US)

1744 Meriwether Lewis (Died 1809)

1920 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution Ratified

1931 Yangtze River Floods causing the death of 3.7 million people directly and indirectly

1937 Toyota Motor Company Founded

1963 James Meredith graduates

2006 60hr work week at Apple iPod plant for $60 per month

19 August

Potato Day (origin?)

National Soft-Serve Ice Cream Day (US)

*National Hot & Spicy Food Day (US)

1867 Wilbur Wright Born

1944 Paris is Liberated by the Allies

1953 Iran Military Coup Supported By United States

1958 Packard Cars End Production

1987 Hungerford, UK Killing Spree by Michael Ryan

20 August

*National ‘ Bacon Lovers ‘ Day (US)

National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day (US)

1920 First Commercial Radio Station Detroit, Michigan

1940 Winston Churchill makes the speech “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.

1968 “Prague Spring”, Czechoslovakia Soviet troops crush protests and restore order.

1989 Marchioness Disaster River Thames London

21 August

National Sweet Tea Day (US)

1911 The Mona Lisa Stolen in France

1959 Hawaii becomes the 50th state in the United States. A YouTube video, original footage

2006 Saddam Hussein crimes against humanity trial Begins

22 August

National Pecan Torte Day (US)

*National “Eat a Peach” Day (US)

1902 Cadillac Started In Detroit

1941 Germany Attacks Leningrad

1992 Hurricane Andrew Strikes Bahamas, Florida and Louisiana

2003 Alabama chief justice, Roy Moore, is suspended

23 August

National Cuban Sandwich Day (US)

National Spongecake Day (US)

1905 New Orleans Yellow Fever Kills Hundreds

1999 West Nile virus Continues It’s Spread Around The Country

24 August

National Peach Pie Day (US)

79AD Mount Vesuvius Erupted

1869 Waffle Iron Patented

1875 First Swimmer crossed the English Channel

1948 Berlin Airlift Increases Aircraft Numbers

1954 Communist Party Outlawed United States

1985 Union Carbide Bhopal Disaster

1996 Hurricane Dolly Strikes Mexico

25 August

National Banana Split Day (US)

National Whiskey Sour Day (US)

1944 Paris Liberated

1950 President Harry S. Truman Places Railroads Under Army Control

1975 Bruce Springsteen album “Born to Run” Released

2005 Hurricane Katrina Makes Landfall In Florida 4 days before striking New Orleans

26 August

National Dog Day (US)

Women’s Vote Day / Women’s Equality Day (origin?)

National Cherry Popsicle Day (US)

1920 The 19th Amendment, guaranteeing women the right to vote, is formally adopted

1932 Temporary Halt Called On Home Foreclosures

1957 Ford Begins Production of Edsel Automobiles. It failed but we learned from it

27 August

National Pots de Creme Day (US)

National Burger Day (US)

1900 The British defeat the Boer army (commanded by Louis Botha) at Bergendal

1910 Mother Theresa’s Birthday

If you judge people, you have no time to love them.
Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.
Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies.
Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.
There are no great things, only small things with great love. Happy are those.
If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.
If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.
I have found the paradox that if I love until it hurts, then there is no hurt, but only more love.
Peace begins with a smile..
Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing.

1955 Guinness Book of World Records Published For The First Time

1979 Lord Louis Mountbatten Murdered.

1989 Sky TV Launched UK

28 August

National Cherry Turnovers Day (US)

1937 Japanese Bomb Shanghai

1963 Martin Luther King, Jr. Gives “I Have A Dream Speech”

1968 10s Of Thousands Anti-Vietnam War Protestors Chicago

1996 Charles, Prince of Wales and his wife, Princess Diana, formally divorce

29 August

National Chop Suey (US)

1949 Russian Troops Mass On The Border Yugoslavia

1949 The Soviet Union test their first atomic bomb

1966 The Beatles play their final US Concert at Candlestick Park in San Francisco

2005 Hurricane Katrina Strikes New Orleans

30 August

National Melted Marshmallow Day (US)

30BC Cleopatra committed suicide day

1935 Wealth Tax Act Passed in the United States

1959 First Mini goes on sale in Britain for £497. Now it sells for £15000

1963 Direct Line Set Up Between Moscow and Washington to prevent the possibility of an accidental war

1989 Leona Helmsley convicted and sentenced

31 August

National Trail Mix Day (US)

1888 Jack the Ripper Kills His First Victim

1954 Hurricane Carol Strikes Long Island, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island

1997 Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed are killed in a car crash in Paris

2005 Curfew Placed On New Orleans


Wonderful Words

Words not used very often 01:04

The novelty of school holidays have worn off again and I have some words I want to remember again. We usually read daily but the holidays hampered my routine a bit. We usually find many words not very common or familiar to us. Usually, I just grab the dictionary or add it to my personal register of words. (I am however trying to get rid of my paper notes) The WP app is always with me and it takes only a few seconds to type it up when I find it. Starting a while ago, I thought I’d build my record of words week by week here. Here are some more of our words that made me reach for the dictionary. Enjoy

(of people) behaving secretly and often dishonestly, or (of actions) done secretly and often dishonestly (The was something furtive about his behaviour and I couldn't help but snap a picture of him leaving)


(especially of a person) round or rounded in shape (Her rotund shape testified of a healthy apetite)

to talk or write about past experienced that you remember with pleasure (Grandfather reminisce about his years on the farm)

to stop something from happening or someone from doing something (eg. I thwarted the kiss by popping the sucker into my mouth)

able to produce the intended result (eg. The protest action proved efficacious to the abolishment of the offensive act)

a deep, narrow crack in rock or the earth (eg. water plunged down the fissure of rocks into the black gorge)

(specialised medical) a long, deep, narrow hollow area in a surface in the body, especially in the cerebral cortex = the surface of the brain

(specialised medical) a fault on the surface of a tooth

And that is it for my list of weird and wonderful words.
Please share some of your unique or seldom used words with me on Twitter.

Until next time!

Books I read

Book I Read: Leota’s Garden by Francine Rivers


Description from Takealot

Once, Leota’s garden was a place of beauty where flowers bloomed and hope thrived. It was her refuge from the deep wounds inflicted by a devastating war, her sanctuary where she knelt before a loving God and prayed for the children who couldn’t understand her silent sacrifices. At eighty-four, Leota is alone; her beloved garden in ruins. All her efforts to reconcile with her adult children have been fruitless. She voices her despair to a loving Father, her only friend. Then God brings a wind of change through unlikely means: one, a college student who thinks he has all the answers; the other, the granddaughter Leota never dared hope to know. But can the devastation wrought by keeping painful family secrets be repaired before she runs out of time?

 What says I

I read this book the first time in 2013 when a friend suggested I should read it. The book starts with a typical scene where mother and daughter are having a disagreement. One soon gets the idea that this is the norm of the book. It’s a great example of the impact control in relationships have on people. How much it circles out and influences adult and child. Annie is a senior in high school that has exceeded at everything her controlling mother threw her way. She danced and studied and played instruments which gave Eleonor all the brag she needed to dominate her friends within their elite social circles. When Annie decides to follow a path completely removed from the posh future that Eleonor designed for her, a great battle unfolds in her and the reader is lead through a series of personal dialogue where many a personal issue comes to the light. Annie makes contact with Leota, her estranged grandmother and another series of beautiful illustrations of restoration in their relationship fill the pages. We soon learn of the lies and indoctrination that has created the hard and controlling persona’s in the book.

Francine Rivers is one of my favourite writers although I seldom read any of her books. Funny, right? Anyways, this is a slow but intense book. Complicated at times as the scarred and issue ravished characters struggle through their relationships and lives. One quickly becomes aware of one’s own tendency and the bad habit to judge the characters by their covers. You find yourself picking a favourite and rooting for that one. I did love how clearly and gently Francine shows every character’s relationship with God. Their inner dialogue also speaks words and you can’t help but want to cry or smile or following the emotion of every character. The story line is solid. The setting is gentle and not overwhelming as it is set mostly at the chaotic and very aged house and garden of Leota. The growth and maturity of the characters are beautiful. As Annie matures in her relationship with God, believing in what she wants to do and heals inside, she becomes a gentle yet powerful force to be reckoned with. There are a few twists and turns that grow all the characters and although it is a slow paced book, it keeps it quite interesting.

As I mentioned, it is quite slow paced. I found myself bored at some places. But once curiosity for the characters personal struggles kicks in, the book moves along. I did not like the ending. I suspect because it has been worn out in my life by religious movements or maybe it is just because of a different conviction. I am not sure.

Overall I think it is a beautiful book of human struggles in their relationships with others, with God and sometimes the lemons life hands them. The ideal book for slow relaxed reading on a rainy day.

What says others

RT Bookreviews gave this book 4 1/2 stars. Annie Kate also had a friend recommend this book! And Christian Book Reviews were not happy with this book though.

Where to connect with the author

Francine Rivers has a website and you can find her on Facebook.

Where to buy this book

Find this book on Takealot

Amazon has e-book, softcover and audio books available

Cumbooks has a pdf book


The edition I read:

Leota’s Garden by Francine Rivers

2nd Edition 1993

Cover by Stephen Vosloo

ISBN 978-1-4143-7065-1

Published by Tyndale House Publishers

Printed & bound in the USA

And that is it from me for now
Until next time sweet peeps!

Books I read

Book I Read: Triffic a Rare Pig’s Tale by Dick King-Smith

Description on Amazon

When young Triffic is not content to stay in her sty, but slips out and befriends Octavius, an elderly mule, the other animals at the Rare Breeds Survival Centre voice their disapproval. But soon this comic pairing of pig and mule begin to pull in the crowds.

What says I

Triffic a Rare Pig’s Tale by Dick King-Smith and Liz Graham-Yooll is a lovely book in the READ IT YOURSELF series. The story follows a baby pig born at the Rare Breeds Survival Centre. She is born to Teresa Tamworth and shares her birth date with her 5 brothers. For the other sows, it’s a tragedy that only 1 girl is born. Triffic is a sow of a difference though when she befriends the old run down mule Octavius. Their friendship opens up a new chapter for the old mule as well as the Rare Breeds Survival Centre.

This is a sweet book. The beauty of friendship is built out throughout the book. I love the fact that Triffic keeps to her friend’s side no matter what and old Octavius opening up his old, maybe even bitter heart for the little piglet.

This book is aimed at wee little ones or early readers. Our book was big print so little eyes can appreciate every letter. It’s a simple story with talking animals that think people are idiotic and talking people that think animals are idiotic. People, however, stand amazed at the odd friendship. Closer to the end of the book, the irresponsibility of smokers come to the light. I must admit, I thought that must have been the author’s aim to point out the selfishness and carelessness of smokers, especially in public areas.

What says others

Sadly this is not a widely read book in recent years. But it did make Maureen Owen’s list of favorites. This is a classic although 1994 is barely a classic, and that will be my reason why this little treasure is not more reviewed.

Where to connect with the author

Unfortunately, this amazing writer died 2011 after a very long life. He has the most beautiful website! He was the creator of The Sheep Pig which was turned into the movie Babe. A movie I quite loved. The Book Base share 7 facts I didn’t know about him.

Where to buy this book

Amazon has a previously loved edition available.

Abe Books has a copy

Bookdepository has none available

The edition we read:

Triffic a Rare Pig’s Tale by Dick King Smith

Illustrated by Liz Graham-Yooll

First Edition 1994 softcover

ISBN 0 575 05665 7

Published by Victor Gollancz, a Cassell imprint

Printed & bound by Dah Hua Printing Press Company Ltd in Hong Kong

And that is it from me for now
Until next time sweet peeps!


Books I read

Book I Read: The Paris Wife by Paula McLain

Description on Bookdepository
Chicago, 1920: Hadley Richardson is a shy twenty-eight-year-old who has all but given up on love and happiness when she meets Ernest Hemingway and is captivated by his energy, intensity and burning ambition to write. After a whirlwind courtship and wedding, the pair set sail for France. But glamorous Jazz Age Paris, full of artists and writers, fuelled by alcohol and gossip, is no place for family life and fidelity. Ernest and Hadley’s marriage begins to founder, and the birth of a beloved son serves only to drive them further apart. Then, at last, Ernest’s ferocious literary endeavours begin to bring him recognition – not least from a woman intent on making him her own …

What says I
This is a book that I honestly don’t have an opinion about. It stays a memorable book about a very famous writer’s first wife, that had a hell of a time dealing with the man she really loved. This book deserves all the acclaim it receives, every positive review and every award lavished onto it. But for me, I have no words…it is more than just a great historical fiction.
Let’s start with what I liked about the book. I associated so much with Hadley, the protagonist and first wife to Mr Hemingway. She’s a strong woman, independent and out of place in a world that looked and felt a certain way. The writer sketched her so beautifully from where she moved to the big city, meeting her future husband, finding herself intrigued by the people so different from herself. It felt like me that latched onto, in reality, an impossible dream and then having to deal with the consequences. Sometimes life feels like a dream to me. When I read and felt and relived this story, I felt Hadley go from young and strong to uncertain and conflicted. It was sad to me how deep her pain ran. And I think I should stop now before I spoil it for a future reader.
As a romance, it is not your stereotypical romance but I do believe a more realistic retelling of a love story. As a historical fiction, brilliant. I felt and experienced America and Europe in the 20’s.

What says others
Bookclub in a Box is a book commentary about this book. NPR Books interviewed her after the release of her book Circling the Sun. New York Times and The Guardian shared some beautiful reviews. This has been a very popular book in book clubs such as Reading Group Guides, LitLovers and Oprah.

Where to connect with the author
Visit Paula McLain on her website. I got stuck on her essays… You can find her on Facebook and Instagram as well.

Where to buy this book
Unfortunately, Takealot is out of stock
Bookdepository with a completely different cover from my copy
Kobo’s deluxe edition has a completely different cover from mine or Bookdepository. This is an ebook but I must admit, this edition sounds like pure indulgence!!

And that is it from me for now
Until next time sweet peeps!