Monday, 31 December 2012

London break

We just got back from a fantastic break in London.  We had a lovely time seeing our friends S and B and visiting the sights.  My husband and son went to the Science Museum whilst my daughter and I visited the Victoria and Albert Museum and we had a wonderful day.  The next day we went to the Natural History Museum and my son and I saw lots of fascinating exhibits whilst my husband and daughter went ice skating.  We also visited the sales and had some delicious food in a variety of restaurants.  Our friends have just set off for a lovely break in Japan and we have returned home to celebrate the New Year.  I thought I would share some of the photos from our trip.

I would like to wish all my followers a Happy New Year and send my best wishes for an amazing 2013.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Merry Christmas

I would like to share the picture of our Christmas Cupcake with all my followers and wish them a very Merry Christmas

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Online Writing Course

Anna Turner has just informed me that her course for next term 'Writing Fiction' is now open for online booking:

Anna Turner
Reader Development Librarian
01422 392606
Central Library

Her hours of work are: Monday and Tuesday 8am - 4pm, Wednesday 9.30am - 2pm



Sunday, 16 December 2012

Nativity 2 film review

Having enjoyed the original Nativity film, my children asked me to take them to see Nativity 2 today and to sum it up in one sentence: 'David Tennant commits career suicide.' 

The film stars David Tennant (Dr Who, Harry Potter and Fright Night) as Mr Donald Peterson (he also plays Roderick Peterson, his famous twin brother) the new teacher for the children of Mr Poppy's (Marc Wootton from the original Nativity) the classroom assistant's class.  Even though the headteacher tells Mr Poppy that they cannot enter the 'Song for Christmas' competition, Mr Poppy does everything in his power to ensure that they do.  I wish I could say with hilarious consequences, but this film was just plain dire.  I had expected it to be worse than the original, due to reviews I had read but wasn't expecting it to be this bad.  For a children's film, it was irresponsible and totally devoid of coherent plot.  The best thing about it were the songs, but even they do not stay with you.  What does, however, is the plot holes (not that there was a plot particularly, but how does Mr Poppy get the London Duck Tour bus when the school is meant to be in Coventry?) and the total lack of sense.  The children are sent down swollen rapids in a dinghy, walked through miles of admittedly beautiful Welsh countryside, hung off a mountain-side by a single rope and at one point, a baby is thrown high into the air by Mr Poppy (anyone recall the outcry when MJ tried something similar?).  I am sure Mr Tennant tries his best with the script, as does Jason Watkins (Gordon Shakespeare, also from the original), but there is just no saving this donkey.  It was heartbreaking to see such classically trained actors trying to unsuccessfully pull themselves out of the mire.

It was 105 minutes of my life I will never get back, not to mention the cost.  Even my youngest couldn't tell me something positive I could put in my review and he loved David Tennant as Dr Who, so should be biased.                                                                             2/10 for the countryside

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Turbulence by Samit Basu review

Just finished reading the novel I purchased when I met Samit at the Morley Literature Festival for the Sci-fi andSuperheroes event.  I was expecting a 'Heroes' meets 'DC/Marvel comics' vibe and I wasn't far wrong.  Aman Sen is aboard a plane when he discovers he has developed internet superpowers and he is not the only one.  When he comes up against Jai a one-man army superpowered villan who wants to rule the world, he bands together with fellow Indian supers including Tia (who can duplicate herself), Uzma (an aspiring Bollywood actress who's power is that everyone who meets her loves her) and Vir who can fly.  Aman wants to save the world and Jai wants to destroy it but during the battles of power between the supers who are on each side, some must lose their lives and no ordinary human is safe from an unknown super who can control them with devastating consequences.

With a good dose of comic history, Bollywood, cricket and 21st century India, this novel gives an interesting post-modern slant to the question 'What would you do if you were given the power to do anything you wanted?'

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Christmas Cleckheaton Writers Group meeting

The CWG met yesterday before adjourning for a Christmas drink at a local pub.  We discussed our plans for our writing for the New Year over a cold glass of Christmas cheer.  Next meeting will take place at the Library on 7 January 2013.

Today I met two of my fellow writers I and K at I's house, where we also discussed our writing plans for next year over a delicious meal that he had prepared.  It was fantastic fare that would not have been out of place in a restaurant and I had a wonderful time.  We had homemade butterbean soup with parmesan shavings to start, grilled salmon with a dijon mustard dressing with a watercress, avocado, tomato and buffalo mozarella salad and buttered new potatoes for main, and finished off with a mulled wine poached pear.  Yum :)

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Birthday Bliss

It was my birthday yesterday and I have enjoyed a lovely birthday weekend.  First, on Friday night the girls and I went into Leeds to Las Iguanas where we enjoyed the Christmas menu and cocktails.  I had the Festive Funghi Quesadilla which contained brie, mushroom and truffle then the Extraordinary Xmas Xinxim which is a brazilian crayfish, chicken, peanut and lime dish and then finished with Caipirinha Present which was a sponge laced with cachaca.  It was all delicious and they were kind enough to supply me with a free birthday cocktail and main course.  So good, we are going again with friends on New Years Eve.

On Saturday after a fun family trip ten-pin bowling (I won the second game), my husband took me to The White Hart at Pool and we enjoyed a delicious meal.  I started with the scallops and pancetti which were so perfect they melted in my mouth.  I then enjoyed the fillet steak with fondant potato, enoki mushroom gratin & veal jus and finished off with a pudding from the specials board - meringue with greek yogurt and honey, bilberries, sesame seeds, cranberries, apricots, strawberry and raspberries - amazing.

I got some lovely presents including some gorgeoous jewellery, cds, books, wine, chocolates and a fabulous galaxy pad.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

More local writing events

Anna Turner has just informed me about more local writing events:

Read Regional Events in Calderdale 2013



Saturday 12 January                 Meet the Author - Michael Stewart

Sowerby Bridge Library            2pm

01422 831627                            Tickets £3 – available from Sowerby Bridge Library


Thursday 17 January                 Meet the Author - Fiona Shaw

Central Library, Halifax             7.30pm                                                

01422 392330                            Tickets £3 – available from Central Library


Wednesday 23 January            Meet the Author – Stephen May

King Cross Library                      6pm

01422 288028                            Tickets £3 – available from King Cross Library


Sunday 27 January                    Writing the Journey – Poetry workshop with Christy Ducker

Hebden Bridge Library             11.30am – 1.30pm                          

01422 288040                           Tickets £6/£4

Literary Thievery – Short Story Workshop with Cassandra Parkin
2.30 – 4.30pm                                   
Tickets £6/£4
The Long Poem – Poetry Workshop with Pauline Plummer
2.30 – 4.30pm                                                                                                   
Tickets £6/£4
Tales of Magic and Faraway Places – readings and discussion
Free event

Monday 11 March                     Poetry Reading Workshop with Anna Woodford

Skircoat Library                          2pm                                                      

01422 354828                            Free – booking essential
Anna Turner
Reader Development Librarian
01422 392606
Central Library
Her hours of work are: Monday and Tuesday 8am - 4pm, Wednesday 9.30am - 2pm

Monday, 3 December 2012

Two free poetry events

Anna Turner has just forwarded me the following information about two free poetry events:

Saturday 8 December, 2pm

Todmorden Library

The Price of Gold

Poetry Reading – Poems about Bees

with Grey Hen Press

Free entry


Saturday 15 December, 1pm

Brighouse Library

Eleven Wonders with Julia Deakin

Poetry Reading

Free entry


Come and enjoy a glass of wine, a mince pie and fantastic poetry