Posted by: billpurdue | October 6, 2013

People keep giving me books!

People who know that I write a blog about books often pass on to me books that they have enjoyed – or even some they can’t get into. Two such books have recently been passed on to me, which I’m reading at the moment. It depends on what mood or situation I’m in as to which book I pick up.

 

The first is “Bring me Sunshine”, which has nothing to do with Morecambe and Wise, but everything to do with the weather. It’s by Charlie Connelly who also wrote “Attention all Shipping”, an exploration of all those sea areas mentioned in the shipping forecast – Dogger, German Bight, Fastnet, North Utsire and so on.

Connelly

“Bring me Sunshine” is a guide to the weather, but so far I’ve come across little in the way of science. It’s more about the people who have made important discoveries, or advances in the study of weather, such as Descartes and Beaufort. It’s more of a ‘bedside’ book for all those interested in the weather. There’s a chapter on the history of the umbrella for example, a chapter on lightning and people who have been struck by it – some more than once. Chapter 3 is entitled ‘Rain: a love story’ in which Connelly describes how rain seems to follow him everywhere and he thinks this is because the rain has fallen in love with him. It’s a good read, partly because you don’t really know what you’ll come across next as you work your way through the book.

 

Fantasy fiction

 

neverwhereNow the friend who passed that book on to me wants it back afterwards, the weather being a particular interest of hers, but the next one I acquired from the same friend who says she just can’t get into it. Actually I’m quite enjoying Neil Gaiman’s  “Neverwhere”. This is the story of Richard Mayhew who helps a girl he finds on the streets of London, who has somehow been wounded. It turns out that Door, for that is her name, is from another London under the ground, inhabited by some very strange people – angels, demons, murderers and the like.

It appears that someone or something is trying to destroy Door, having already murdered the rest of her family, so Richard tries to help her find out who is behind it all. In so doing, Richard becomes drawn into this dark world and loses his identity above ground. I’m about half way through and I will definitely finish the book. Recommended for Terry Pratchett fans.

 

There’s a Wikipedia article about the novel which explains more about the plot and the origins of the novel, which is a novelization of the TV  series of the same name.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neverwhere_(novel)

 

Clipstone Camp

 

There’s renewed interest in the First World War as the centenary of the outbreak approaches. Clipstone Camp, near Mansfield, Notts.,   was a training camp for around 30,000 soldiers during that war and a local historian has just published a book about the camp and its relationship with the Mansfield area. Pauline Marples has been researching the history of the camp since 1993. A long term resident of Forest Town , Pauline used to be the editor, along with her husband Malcolm, of the excellent quarterly community magazine “The Forest Town Crier”, which unfortunately closed a few years ago. I haven’t seen her new book: “Clipstone Camp and the Mansfield Area during World War One”, but I can be sure that it is a thoroughly researched  and readable book. I don’t expect there’s much about the history of Forest Town and Clipstone that Pauline doesn’t know.

 

Unfortunately the Chad article (Oct 2nd edition) about her new book doesn’t say how to get hold of a copy.

 

 

 

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