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The temperature has dipped here, ice has formed in the birdbath and we had snow yeaterday in the southern part of the Province and currently the clouds have gathered and we're wondering if it's going to rain or snow! It's a little cool and it was so nice last week!

We have long winters and really I am surprised that I live somewhere where it does get so very cold. I really don't know when it became home, as there are certainly warmer and prettier places to live. I think for me it is the levels of light, the big skies and that bright Alberta blue, which has become one of my favourite shades of blue

It's time to huddle indoors, the heat is now and I don't expect to have the windows opened again until the spring. I am between books- hoping to start Touch not the Cat soon and in the car is Objects of my Affection by Jill Smolinski.

And yes the natives are friendly!

Mystica Varathapalan

In Egypt with Nefertiti handled beautifully by Michelle Moran. The ruthlessness of politics hasn't diminished has it?


In New York City with a pair of brothers from Dublin. (Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann.)

adele geras

I am in Silverstream, a 'fictional' English village in MISS BUNCLE'S BOOK by DE Stevenson. It's a Persephone book and I am just ADORING it. Not only is it light-hearted and warm hearted too, but it is also a master class in structure, plotting, and the first chapter is a really good lesson in HOW TO BEGIN A BOOK ECONOMICALLY. It's terrific and I can't recommend it enough. After I've finished this, I'm going to be reading Ann Cleeve's new book "THE GLASS ROOM." I am looking forward to that!


I have been stranded on Scottish islands for a few weeks now. First there was the rediscovery of a childhood read 'Emma's Island' (Honor Arundel) set on a fictional island somewhere in the Inner Hebrides near Coll and Tiree. After that I was on the Shetlands with Jimmy Perez (Ann Cleeves). My stay there included visits to Whalsay and Fair Isle. Now I have reluctantly left the Shetlands and am back on another fictional island near Coll and Tiree in Mary Stewart's Stormy Petrel. The weather varies from calm and bonny to wild and stormy. I love the hugeness of the skies and the fact that you can always see the horizon.

Dark Puss

I've just finished The Finkler Question and very good it was too. It's set in and around my part of London, but it isn't all that concerned with describing the weather. Some of the natives are friendly and some are actively or passively anti-Semites. This morning I have read the first 100 pages of Cold Comfort Farm which is of course full of stormy nights and endless drizzle, though if I remember correctly the sun finally comes out towards the end. Flora is not yet sure how many of the natives are in any way normal, let alone friendly, and she is about to meet Mr Mybug!


Miss Buncle's Book is great! (Must go and look at that first chapter again ...)


Reading-wise I have just moved from the Saudi Arabia of Zoe Ferraris' Kingdom of Strangers to the Victorian London of Tom-All-Alone's by Lynn Shepherd neither of which seem to be particularly friendly places unless you are rich, influential and male! For light relief I am visiting the Somerset Levels with Stephen Moss's lovely nature diary, Wild Hares and Hummingbirds and after that I plan to head across the Atlantic to New England to start Tigers In Red Weather by Lisa Klaussman


France during the 1700s. It's a pretty dangerous time to be here, so thankfully I'm just a fly-on-the-wall. I'll stay for the book, but otherwise I'd be wanting to move on quickly. You've travelled some distance recently!


Autumn in NYC--a son and his mother sit in the waiting room of Sloan-Kettering. Will Schwalbe's book just arrived in the mail yesterday (just released in US). Want to savor this one.


It is indeed one to savour.


I'm very much enjoying The Stranger's Child by Alan Hollinghurst. At the moment in the 1920s where the natives are definetely not friendly.

Susan in TX

I'm following Lord Peter Wimsey as he tries to prove the innocence of Miss Vane in Strong Poison. Also on the go on this side of the pond and a few hundred years prior, is My Dearest Friend Letters of Abigail and John Adams.


Savor/savour - Whilst I grew up in UK and learned to add the 'u' to favour, savour, etc., alas coming back to the US, I had to 'unlearn' it. That usage is not in favor :( and is marked incorrect on spelling tests over the Pond.


I couldn't write it without the 'u', but I was quoting a passage from an American book the other day and left 'check' as is, (though I really wanted to write 'cheque'!).


Chittering with cold and fear in Sweden! I have just started Sun Storm by Asa Larsson and at least one of the natives is very unfriendly, to the point of killing someone.

Is this enough to put my name in the hat for the Snow Child? I'm not feeling too confident since the only thing I have ever won in a raffle is a box of biscuits in Moffat, of all places. I didn't even live there so how random is that?


That's one of my favourite D E Stevenson books, very pleased that you are enjoying it so much.

I'm currently in Liguria, Italy,as I am re-reading Annie Hawes "Extra Virgin". That's my sitting room book of the moment.

Bedroom book is "Dear Fatty" by Dawn French, which moves around a lot as her father was in the RAF. So I can't pin that title down to a single location.

Next D E Stevenson book lined up for a DESsie email group's discussion, is "Portrait of Saskia", a recently discovered manuscript published for the first time by Greyladies. So that book is sitting beside the computer keyboard.


I found a secondhand copy of Edward Thomas' "The South Country" in Brisbane and am at present in Hampshire in a chapter entitled 'The End of Winter'! My favourite bit at the moment: "...the plough changes the pale stubble into a ridgy chocolate...". Well, there's no snow or frost where I live, just frigid air conditioning in the heat of summer which we're being warned could be a bit of a challenge this year.


I am delighted to be in the English village of Allways with Beverley Nichols as he plots his garden in "Down the Garden Path". I just finished his Merry Hall trilogy (a re-read for me) and absolutely adore him. I am always happy to be in the garden with Mr. Nichols.


Stalky & Co, Rudyard Kipling:

First Chapter 'In Ambush'

"Forgotten - forgotten was the College and the decency due to elders! M'Turk was treading again the barren purple mountains of the rainy West coast, where in his holidays he was viceroy of four thousand naked acres, only son of a three hundred year old house, lord of a crazy fishing-boat, and the idol of his father's shiftless tenantry. It was the landed man speaking to his equal - deep calling to deep - and the old gentleman acknowledged the cry."

I'm hooked - a charming book.

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