Tonight at Dr Challoners High School Philippa Gregory will be talking about her new book, The Taming of the Queen, a novel about Katherine Parr. I can’t wait. If you want to come along you can get a ticket by clicking here
I have recently returned from a most amazing trekking trip in Peru. It is a fascinating country with a very long history, friendly people and stunning scenery. We trekked is a gentle way in several different areas, particularly the Cordillera Negra and Cordillera Blanca. I was very anxious about altitude sickness before we left but we ascended slowly so all was well.
Yumbilla waterfall, the fifth highest in the world at 895.5 metres on the left, a wonderful hike through virgin rainforest from the village of Cuispes. On the right, mountains in the Cordillera Blanca.
Yesterday I went for the last time to the BBC Three Counties Radio Studios in Luton. Next time I go they will have moved to Dunstable. Handily that is a bit nearer home for me which is good. The pictures look great so it will be fun to be in the new studios.
Now to get reading for the next batch of recommended books on July 6th. Summer reading!
The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton published Jan 1st 2015 by Pan Macmillan £7.99 paperback
This is a kind of 17th century thriller. A bit spooky as well
Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey published Jan 1st 2015 by Penguin £7.99 paperback
Maud is 81 and has dementia. This is her story. Funny, poignant, sad and very readable.
Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan published July 2014 by Vintage £16.99 hardback
This is going into my top ten books of all time at number 3. It is the winner of the Man Booker prize and is just stunningly unputdownable. The hero, Dorrigo Evans, is a doctor from Tasmania, who finds himself held by the Japanese in a prisoner of war camp. The inmates of the camp are expected to build the Thailand Burma Railway.
The Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen published by Random House Children’s January 2015 £6.99
This has been shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and for the Blue Peter fiction award which will be announced on World Book Day on Thursday. It is a gripping read aimed at 9 – 13 year olds
Sophia by Anita Anand published by Bloomsbury January 15 2015 £20 hardback
This is a biography of Sophia Duleep Singh, granddaughter of Ranjit Singh, the Lion of the Punjab and god daughter of Queen Victoria.
H is for hawk by Helen MacDonald published by Vintage February 2015 £8.99 paperback
Wonderful autobiography of Helen Macdonald training a goshawk called Mabel and learning to deal with her grief at her father’s death. Woven in is a biography of T.H.White, one time teacher and author of The Once and Future King
I have just added the books Nick Coffer and i discussed on BBC Three Counties on Monday December 1st. If you are stuck for a Christmas present you could do worse than have a look!
My monthly book slot with Nick Coffer on BBC Three Counties Radio comes around very quickly! Always great to chat about books though and we managed to squeeze six books in today including 2 childrens books and one non fiction. You can see what I recommended by looking at the radio recommendations page. You can hear the programme by clicking on this link BBC3CR It will be there until Monday August 4th.
I have just added the entry form for the Chorleywood Literary Festival Writing Competition to the Chorleywood Bookshop website. Get writing all you budding writers! The theme is Bravery, 800 words and you could win the Dominian Short Story Prize. Closing date October 27th
I have read all my books ready for the radio on Monday. You will have to listen if you want to know what my books are this month! BBC Three Counties radio, the Nick Coffer Show on Monday July 28th from 12 noon to 3pm.