Monthly Archives

August 2016


5 of the Best DIY Books You’ll Ever Read

By | Books | No Comments

Sometimes when you’re planning a do-it-yourself project you find you need a bit of quality information that makes these home repairs easier. But it can be difficult to separate the truly helpful from the fads. So, if you’re going to find the perfect art for your living room, we have rounded up some of the best DIY guides and books that are both for inspiration and planning and for specific step-by-step instructions.

Making Things Move: DIY Mechanisms for Inventors
When it comes to DIY gadgets, what you need is just imagination. In this book, you will not only learn a great introduction to mechanical movements, but create something that moves. It covers a wide range of areas, include materials, power, fastening techniques, and types of motors. The examples (projects) include a drawing machine, a mousetrap powered car, even popular technology like 3D printing and laser cutting too.

Check out the author’s site:

Taylor’s Master Guide to Landscaping by Rita Buchanan
Developing your landscape is one of the surest ways to pump up the value of your home. However, landscaping is not just a matter of choosing your favorite plants. And keep in mind that the success of developing beauty landscaping doesn’t depend on how much you spend, especially you’ve never tackled a landscape design before. The book includes a large of plants and gardeners’ habitats. The basic information and photos are comprehensive enough for the average gardener. The book also explain how to grow and care for different landscape plants- groundcovers, shrubs, lawns, trees, etc.

Apartment Therapy Complete and Happy Home
It’s not easy to décor your apartment. If you’re in the process of moving a new house, then I suggest you read this book at first. It covers inspiration and solutions for all parts of your home. Ryan, the writer of this book, has spent the past many years to tell his readers how to try new things in the rest of home, not just in the kitchen. “This book is for a new, post-Martha Stewart way of living,” Ryan tells readers. The book full of photos and stories is brimming with inspiration to spark your own style.

The Complete Book of Woodworking
Woodworking has come a long way in the past hundred years. From principles of basic design to essential woodworking techniques, there is a long learning curve. If you want to start learning more about woodworking, you not only need a best miter saw, but this book: The Complete Book of Woodworking. You will find thousands of easy-to-follow plans in this book. You will be impressed with Tom Carpenter’s “Building Beautiful Boxes with your Band Saw”. The author not only shows you a bunch of really cool tools, but the proper way to use them.

Buy from amazon:

Ed Begley Jr.’s Guide to Sustainable Living

Looking for the Eco-Friendly Lifestyle? Then get with Ed’s new book. The book is comprehensive, yet easy to understand. He tried to summarize my 39-year eco-journey into the book- including his home, transportation, and energy-saving. The “star of climate change” comes the ultimate guide to lead a healthier and more toxin- free life, and make your home- greener and healthier and better overall in so many ways. The author, Ed Begley, Jr, who advocates for the belief that “If you have a healthy environment, you’ll have a healthy economy.”

You can find these everywhere in secondhand bookshops, and online for pennies. Get them, use them!


Mr Chartwell By Rebecca Hunt

By | Books | No Comments

As Esther Hammerhans prepares her spare room in the London home she once shared with her husband, a knock at the door signals the arrival of a potential tenant. Along with everyone reading the book, Esther is surprised to find a dog waiting on the doorstep. More surprisingly this is a dog who walks on his hind legs, talks and goes by the name, Mr Chartwell. Mr Chartwell by Rebecca Hunt

Meanwhile, Winston Churchill prepares a speech on the eve of his retirement from Parliament at his home, (yes you’ve guessed it) Chartwell. He is also visited bt Mr Chartwell, or Black Pat as he likes to call himself, and as Churchill and Ester’s lives entwine you see the intrusive and devestating effects Black Pat has on those he encounters.

The book could be compared to a fairy story albeit an extremely dark one because Mr Chartwell is the characterization of depression. He physically and mentally intrudes in both Churchill and Esther’s lives and presents himself as a sarcastic, annoying and slightly detestable character.

This is the ‘black dog’ Churchill often referred to as the depression he suffered, and as Hunt weaves the Black Pat into the story she explores the emotions and attitudes that the illness causes.

A far fethched plot some would say and I have to admit that it takes a while to suspend your belief, and get into the story. However, as you become more engrossed in the characters, it all, strangley, starts to make sense making you realise how clever the story is.

Although hard going in places, which is expected from exploring such a difficult subject, keep an open mind though and you will be able to appreciate the creativity and uniquness of Rebecca Hunt’s debut novel.

Buy the book from Amazon:


Tattoo Covers From Penguin

By | Readers | No Comments

You may not expect the majority of bookworms to share the same passion they have for literutre for tattoos, there is no denying that this new collection called Penguin Ink are striking. From Zadie Smith’s White Teeth to Nick Homby’s High Fidelity, these modern classics compliment the covers which were commissioned for design by some of the world’s leading tatyoo artists. Not only do you get a good read from each book but you are invitied to discover the artist behind the design and their own personal story.

For a dramatic read full of suspence, choose Notes on a Scandal. The novel was adapted to the big screen in 2007, starring Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett. If you are looking for something a little more light hearted try The Rotter’s Club, a must for Grammer Pupils or anyone wanting a book full of ‘laugh out loud’ moments.

Now who’s up for putting one of these covers on a limb?


A Good Read

By | Readers | No Comments

It is always exciting gMy Booksetting a parcel of books through the post so I thought I’d share my recent purchases which are addint to my personal library. So what have I chosen to read this week?

The Book I Haven’t Got Round To – I’ve seen all the TV adaptations of E.M Forster usually starring a young Helena Bonham Carter and a cast of great British actors (Wings of a Dove has to be one of my favourites). Yet I’ve never got round to reading his novels. To right this wrong, I have a copy of A Room with a View and with just under 200 pages, it won’t take long to start moving through the Forster catalogue. Good job Howards End is on its way.

The Recommendation – I have heard so often that Evelyn Waugh’s greatest novel wasn’t Brideshead Revisited but actually his debut, Decline and Fall. The story of ‘misfits, rascals and fools’ at Oxford University. One of the greatest comic novels ever written or so I have been told. Only time will tell on that one.

The True Story – Always a fan of historical biographies, award winning Aristocrats by Stella Tillyard explores the story of Caroline, Emily, Louise and Sarah Lennox whose facinating and turbulent lives spanned the Georgian period of English and Irish history. Sometimes the best stories are the real ones.

Come back for the reviews soon and get your copies by clicking on the book cover.


Books on The Beeb

By | Books | No Comments

If nothing else, the BBC is renowned, world over, for their engaging and sumptuous drama productions. They were, after all, the ones who brought Colin Firth to our screens as Mr Darcy. Enough said I think.

So what other novels have the BBC been picking from the book shelves to entertain us this year? A good dowsing of Period Dramas are always a welcome edition to the (cough) talent (cough) shows. We have already enjoyed the harsh realities of life in post war South Riding and the edgy Victorian, The Crimson Petal and the White.

Following the success of previous dramatisations of Sarah Waters’ bestsellers (Tipping the Velvet, Fingersmith) the BBC return to the author’s back catalogue for Night Watch. A story of survival in 1940s London starring Anna Maxwell-Marting (South Riding, Bleak House) as ambulance driver, Kay Langrish.

Moving to the classics we will be treated to not one but two Dickens’s adaptations this year. The ambitious dramatisation of Edwin Drood will have Dickens’s fans poised at the ready waiting to see how writer, Gwyneth Hughes, will complete Dickens’ final and incomplete novel for BBC4.

Less exciting, yet sure to be still appreciated, the BBC are turning to Great Expectations with a brand new version, little over a decade since the last production staring Ioan Gruffedd and Justine Waddell aired. Its a wonder why the BBC are trying to improve on perfection especially when there are so many ‘Classic Novel’ treasures crying out for their chance to be adapted. Scheduled for Christmas, it will certainly bring in the viewers and since it is the time of ‘good will’ and repeats for TV, it won’t be completely out of place.

Time for something brand new with Case Histories adapted from Kate Atkinson’s bestseller of the same title. Jackson Brodie, a private detective, solves murders and mysteries long since abandoned from the 70s. With intertwining plots and engaging characters this will no doubt be a huge hit for fans and those not familiar yet with Atkinson’s work.

Although there hasn’t been much information released yet regarding the upcoming adaptation of Sebastian Faulk’s Birdsong you’ll no doubt hear a big ‘about time too’ from fans of the book after its release back in 1993 with talks of film versions constantly falling through since. Eddie Redmayne (The Other Boleyn Girl) and French actress Clemence Poesy (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) will take the leads of Stephen and Isabelle in this World War One epic. Tissues at the ready, you have been warned!

Overall it looks an exciting year from the BBC Drama department and if you can’t wait for the productions themselves then get stuck into one of the books today. The difficulty being which one will you read first?