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What I am reading Wednesday
Wednesday 30th December 2020 4:46 pm

What I Just Finished Reading
The Chalet School and Guernsey by Katherine Bruce. When I started this book I had been assuming it would involve them leaving Guernsey, established that maybe it wasn't and was a bit disappointed. Then we had a few chapters of just ordinary school stuff and I decided that actually that was what I wanted in the book. So then it immediately turned into them deciding to leave Guernsey now, actually, which I was reading at the same time as the government were bringing in stricter measures in some parts of the country, and it then I really wanted to be reading just a school story. I finished it anyway, since there were only a couple of chapters to go, but it was a bit of an odd book, feeling like neither one thing nor the other.

What I'm Currently Reading
How Was It For You? by Virginia Nicholson. This is about women in the 1960s. It goes by year and themes and I'm currently on 1964. There are just so many things starting that we recognise as modern - it's such a different decade from the 1950s. It's been particularly interesting having read Shopgirls, so I can relate it to the changes in shopping and consumerism that happen around that time. I thought I was mostly interested in the 20s-50s, but there's loads here that I'd like to know more about. Handily there are some footnotes suggesting books that go into more detail about some of these things - one of which I already own!

What I'm Reading Next
Funny You Should Ask by QI Elves. This is explanations of ordinary things you don't (necessarily) think to ask, inspired by the questions asked at the Why Workshop on Zoe Ball's breakfast program. I've enjoyed the Why Workshop and the elves have been publicising this a lot with extracts, so I know I'll like it and find it interesting.


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Live comedy in 2020
Wednesday 23rd December 2020 8:02 pm

I like to go and see live comedy. I had quite a bit in the diary for this year, which quickly got cancelled from March. Although then I saw more than I thought, as they included live screenings. Here's all the ones I 'went to' that required a ticket:

Ardal O'Hanlan
Infinite Monkey Cage
Jack Dee
Mark Watson
Mock the Week
The News Quiz
No Such Thing as a Fish
Sandi Toksvig

Technically I went to No Such Thing as a Fish twice, but one of them clashed with something else, so I watched it later. But I still paid for it.

Last year I went to 12 things, so two-thirds of that isn't bad. I liked being able to go over Zoom because then it doesn't matter where they are in relation to where I am.

I currently have three in the diary for next year, all of which have moved date at least once. And one for 2022.


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What I am reading Wednesday
Wednesday 16th December 2020 7:31 pm

What I Just Finished Reading
The Secret by Lorna Hill. I was very excited when GGBP re-published this. It's 14th in the Sadlers Wells series, of which I own the first twelve. The last two are pretty much impossible to find and when you do find them they're about £100. So I was excited to read this one. It's pretty much the same as the others, which is not a surprise, but I enjoyed it. There's an afterword where Lorna Hill's daughter Vicki talks about what they discussed would be in the next book, to resolve this one. Which sounds like it would have been a good book.

The Kingdom by Jess Rothenburg. I thought from the blurb on the back that this was a sci-fi murder mystery and I was sort of right. It starts off in the present with Anna being tried for murder and then goes back to the past, from Anna's point of view, leading up to the trial - with some of it interspersed with the past narrative. What's really interesting is that she's a hybrid - looks human but is robot, ish - and lives as a Disney Princess in Disneyland (just without the word Disney). I really enjoyed it and went looking for more by the same author, but she's a new author and has only written one other book and that's a YA romance. I will be keeping a look out for more by her in the future.

What I'm Currently Reading
The Chalet School in Guernsey by Katherine Bruce. This arrived and work's been crazy busy, so it's just the right amount of don't need a brain to read now. I have only just started it, but it's standard Chalet School stuff. I'm just waiting for the Chalet School to need to move off Guernsey. Which I assume will happen in this book - right near the start they're talking about whether France will fall.

What I'm Reading Next
How Was it For You? by Virginia Nicholson. My Chanukah present about women in the 1960s. I am looking forward to it, despite it being a big, thick book.


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