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Archive for March, 2013

Egypt to Greece

Here’s what I read in February. Try them yourself:

1) Sharpe’s Triumph by Bernard Cornwell. Second in the series where Sharpe is now a Sergeant.

2) Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey. This was an audiobook as Richard III had been found and all the print copies had been borrowed from the Library.

3) The Hunting by Sam Hawksmoor. A break from Historical Fiction, this is the second in the series following the story of Genie Magee ( I can also recommend this author’s earlier book, Diamonds: The Rush of ’79 (as Sam North)

4) How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes by Maria Konnikova. I was gutted to miss a talk by this lady at my local library but read her book nonetheless. Shows how to observe things rather than just see them:

5) The Mask of Ra by Paul Doherty. This is a detective story set in Ancient Egypt written by a very prolific author. I read this in two days!

6) In the Red by Mark Tavener. I loved the TV adaptation of this in 1998 and is very apt for what’s been going on the last five years!

OK, so Greece isn’t here but it will be next month.


Read Through History

Sweet Christ! Talk about forgetful! A few posts ago I said I would be telling you what books I’ve been reading this year and now, nearly four months into 2013, I’ve only just remembered! You may remember that, after buying books at conferences and talks, meeting authors on Twitter and taking advantage of various Kindle Daily Deals, I would read these books in chronological order. Well, as time has gone by the list has grown somewhat so this could take a while…

Here’s the list for January:

1) Sharpe’s Tiger by Bernard Cornwell. The first in the Sharpe series set in 1799.

2) Undreamed Shores by Mark Patton. A very interesting story set in 2400 BC at Stonehenge (

3) The World Turned Upside Down by Christopher Hill. Research for the current book.

4) Ramses: Son of the Light by Christian Jacq. The beginning of a series about the famous Ancient Egyptian Pharoah.

How’s that for starters? If you’re stuck for something to read, try these.

Ice Age Art

Last week I went down to Old London Town for two reasons. One was to go to the Royal Observatory in Greenwich. After sailing the ocean waves (well, after a boat ride on the Thames) I climbed the steep hill to the Observatory (not a good idea when you’ve got an annoying cough) and had a look around. If you go to Greenwich then I suggest visiting the National Maritime Museum while you are there. The Cutty Sark is open again too.

After that I went to the British Museum to see their Ice Age Art Exhibition.

If you watch the Werner Herzog film, Cave of Forgotten Dreams, then you will have a good introduction to early human art. This exhibition is more to do with actual objects than paintings, which are shown in a light show projected on the wall about half-way round. In this exhibition you can see carvings in stone and bone along with figures carved from tusks and antlers. These show the mentality of humans all over the world 40,000 years ago – the animals they lived with, religion and how they viewed each other.

Anyway, I’m not going to ruin any more of it. If you want to find out what’s there then get down and see: