An Authentic Spaghetti Carbonara
Loft, Fitness and Books

Books I’ve Read

The Storyteller

The last few books I’ve read have been really enjoyable. I like Jodi Picoult books, her characters have real life to them and lots of inner thoughts. The latest one of hers that I’ve read is The Storyteller.

Price: £8.26
Was: £8.99
A self confessed Nazi seeks out a young Jew to forgive him for his war time crimes. It raises huge themes of familial loyalty, the nature of forgiveness and who can do it, and how good people can find themselves doing very bad things. Extremely thought provoking

Ignore the price shown for any of these books, there are always copies available for 1p plus p+p



The NUMBER ONE bestseller from the author of Small Great Things, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird for the 21st Century’ (Reader Review)

For seventy years, Josef Weber has been hiding in plain sight.

He is a pillar of his local community.

He is also a murderer.

When Josef decides to confess, it is to Sage Singer, a young woman who trusts him as her friend. What she hears shatters everything she thought she knew and believed.

As Sage uncovers the truth from the darkest horrors of war, she must follow a twisting trail between terror and mercy, betrayal and forgiveness, love – and revenge.

She is a master of her craft . . . and humanity is what Picoult does best’ Sunday Telegraph

Major Pettigrews Last Stand

Major Pettigrews Last Stand was passed to me by a good friend. It’s a gentle read and explores a budding romance between two unlikely partners. Themes of fitting into the society of which you are a part, where to draw the line and how to choose. It is absolutely charming and I loved it.





Major Ernest Pettigrew is perfectly content to lead a quiet life in the sleepy village of Edgecombe St Mary, away from the meddling of the locals and his overbearing son. But when his brother dies, the Major finds himself seeking companionship with the village shopkeeper, Mrs Ali. Drawn together by a love of books and the loss of their partners, they are soon forced to contend with irate relatives and gossiping villagers. The perfect gentleman, but the most unlikely hero, the Major must ask himself what matters most: family obligation, tradition or love?

Funny, comforting and heart-warming, Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand proves that sometimes, against all odds, life does give you a second chance.

How To Jug A Hare

This is an anthology of food columns from the archives of The Telegraph. Funny, informative and sometimes, of its time, they are short reads that I pick up and put down. I picked this one up from a charity shop






The opening of the Savoy in 1889, with Auguste Escoffier at the helm of its kitchen, rang in the new era of the celebrity chef. Though food is intrinsic to our very existence, the public’ s interest was piqued and our pursuit of gastronomy has been on the rise ever since. Fortunately, The Telegraph has been there to document it.

Trawling through the archives, features writer Sarah Rainey, has read through the great and the good as well as the more nostalgic recipes and culinary contemplations. Contributions from literary figures and their kitchens such as A.S. Byatt, sit beautifully alongside the slightly less erudite but equally wonderful entries that are a snapshot into the era they were written.

The hidden gems of the past include interviews with ‘up-and-coming’ chefs including Richard Stein, producing the best of New British Cooking in Padstow, not to mention the flamboyant Egon Ronay extolling the virtues of the ‘ new’ trend of coffee houses.

Sometimes preventing hollandaise from splitting when you are sweating in a hot kitchen is just not worth it. So take some time out, sit down and read about what Mary Berry did before Great British Bake Off, how Heston Blumenthal wasn’ t the first person to make weird flavours of ice cream and the trade tips from the perennially progressive Elizabeth David.

With a foreword by best-selling food writer from the  Telegraph, this is a collection of all that we love about food from the archives of  The Telegraph.


Down at the library

Our local library is completely changing how it handles book groups. The library will no longer hold books for us and we must pick them all up in one go, seemingly a small change, but very inconvenient. If a member doesn’t make a meeting, they now have to go to the conveners house to pick up their book, and you can hardly do that in the couple of minutes it takes from the library. It becomes a social call. More time consuming and one that has to be co-ordinated between the two people involved

We now have to choose from a pre-defined list of books. It has 365 books on it, many are very old, many are classics, and of those more contemporary, most of the members of the two book groups I belong to have read most of them. Members of both groups want to read contemporaray fiction, and we are feeling very restricted. So both groups have decided, independently, to choose our own books and to buy them cheaply from Amazon, or on an e-reader. This month is our last library book, then we’re on our own.

How To Find Books You’ll Love

Have you ever heard of It is a fantastic way to find books you want to read, and as you go through, marking the ones you’ve already read, you get more targeted recommendations.  I found loads to forward to my book groups as my contribution of books we could put on our list for 2018. As well as the stacks of books I have waiting to be read on my shelves, I now have an additional (virtual) stack on GoodReads!


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An Authentic Spaghetti Carbonara
Loft, Fitness and Books
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