Book Review: ‘The Lyrics’ by Paul McCartney with Paul Muldoon

The format of this 2-volume autobiography/memoir makes it an expensive choice; but I was fortunate enough to receive it as a Christmas gift, and having only just finished poring over it, I can now report that I found it utterly fascinating. I believe the book will be of greatest interest to those who have followedContinue reading “Book Review: ‘The Lyrics’ by Paul McCartney with Paul Muldoon”

Cover Reveal: Illustrated Tales of Warwickshire, due out from Amberley on 15 April 2022

Today I’m delighted to be able to share with you the Cover Reveal for my new non-fiction book, which will be published on 15 April 2022 by Amberley Publishing. On the front cover, from top left, you will see a statue of Warwick’s hero Guy of Warwick; the Bear and Ragged Staff insignia, whose originsContinue reading “Cover Reveal: Illustrated Tales of Warwickshire, due out from Amberley on 15 April 2022”

A Visit to Compton Verney, Warwickshire, in December 2021

Compton Verney in Warwickshire is one of my favourite places; an elegant Georgian house set in a glorious landscape. A visit here and a walk through the Capability Brown parklands always gives me a feeling of bliss and tranquility. Capability Brown knew what he was up to when he rode through the grounds of theseContinue reading “A Visit to Compton Verney, Warwickshire, in December 2021”

A Tribute to a Gifted Friend: Multifaceted Artist Alison Hird-Beecroft

Today I want to celebrate a rare soul and gifted artist, a lover of the structure and form and beauty she found in the world, both in nature and in the built environment, who cunningly wove that into her own exquisite artefacts: Alison Hird-Beecroft. Alison was a dear friend of both myself and my sisterContinue reading “A Tribute to a Gifted Friend: Multifaceted Artist Alison Hird-Beecroft”

Excitement as Our Film Maker Daughter Abigail Robinson Graduates as Master of Screen Production

This morning we feel so proud, as our daughter Abigail has just graduated from Griffith University Film School, Queensland, with a Master in Screen Production. I watched the live-stream at midnight as Queensland is 10 hours ahead of the UK. It was an emotional moment as Abigail went across the stage to greet Henry Smerdon,Continue reading “Excitement as Our Film Maker Daughter Abigail Robinson Graduates as Master of Screen Production”

Two Great Author Events in Scotland and the Midlands: from Brechin, Angus to Kenilworth, Warwickshire

November 2021 for me has been an amazing month. In the last two weeks of November 2021 I’ve met so many exciting fellow authors at two fabulous book events. There has been a great sense of cameraderie, we have all deepened relationships or made new ones, discovered each other’s books, and we have sold ourContinue reading “Two Great Author Events in Scotland and the Midlands: from Brechin, Angus to Kenilworth, Warwickshire”

A Visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard: HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, a perfect time capsule that transports us into another world

On a recent trip to Portsmouth, we were absorbed into the lives of the great ships there, and their rich histories. The Mary Rose Museum shone out for us with its immersive experience and its astonishing recovery of details of the sailors’ lives back in 1545. But HMS Warrior and HMS Victory also enthralled usContinue reading “A Visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard: HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, a perfect time capsule that transports us into another world”

Fiction Genre: What is it Exactly?

As a writer, I believe we should be willing to explore new areas, and to step outside our comfort zone. And that applies very closely to our lives as readers too. I read a wide variety of books, both non-fiction, and fiction of all genres. I admit I do like psychological insight but I believeContinue reading “Fiction Genre: What is it Exactly?”

Thoughts on ‘Witch Child’ by Celia Rees

Today I share my review of ‘Witch Child‘ by Celia Rees, now out in a special 20th Anniversary edition. This is a compelling historical novel of the arrival of a group of Puritans in New England in 1650, of their encounters with the Native Indians, and a tale not only of religious intolerance but ofContinue reading “Thoughts on ‘Witch Child’ by Celia Rees”

Book Review: ‘Hamnet’ by Maggie O’Farrell

I waited quite a long time for Waterstones to send me this book; and having received it, I spent the next few hours devouring this story of William Shakespeare’s family and the tragic death of his 11 year old son Hamnet. Living as I do near Stratford-upon-Avon I have visited all the Shakespeare properties aContinue reading “Book Review: ‘Hamnet’ by Maggie O’Farrell”