Saturday, January 21, 2017

The Franchise Affair by Josephine Tey


The Franchise Affair - book 3 in the Alan Grant series (though he is barely in this one)
by Josephine Tey
mystery 1948
kindle
finished 1/21/17 


I have never read a book like The Franchise Affair
Here is the plot. A young teenage girl goes to the police and tells them that she has been kidnapped and beaten by two women, a woman in her forties and her mother. She describes their house and grounds in great and perfect detail. The women deny everything. Can you imagine if someone accused you of such a thing and ‘knew’ your home inside out? What a horror. The reader doesn't know who is telling the truth and who isn’t for a while. There is a wonderful small town lawyer who has lived a placid, easy life with a doting aunt. Suddenly he is swept up in the case and off on the adventure of his life. Alan Grant, the Scotland yard sleuth in the first two books in the series makes very few appearances. I guess that’s about all I’ll say except that this is one great story, and you don’t need to read the others in the series first.

I read it for the Birth Year Reading Challenge 2017


and the Read Scotland 2017 challenge



though I was going to read it anyway because I am planning to read all the books in the Alan Grant series, and Tey's non-series books as well. She was a very good writer who died too early. Her real name was Elizabeth MacKintosh. You may read more about her here and here. I've just bought a recent biography of her by Jennifer Morag Henderson. My thanks go out to my blogging friend Cath for introducing the author to me. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Little Secrets cookies

This is a posting which references two earlier blog entries I've written. One is a a  'product placement' piece on Little Secrets candy. You may read it here.

The second entry is a chocolate chip cookie recipe from the Sugar in the Raw company. You may read it here.

A while ago I read someone's post on cookies made with M&Ms. Since then I've been thinking of making them with Little Secrets. I used the chocolate chip recipe just substituting Little Secrets for chocolate chips. I bought several varieties, and am making them once a week now.

Hazel Nina began going three mornings a week to a Montessori school in town. One of the days is a day Margaret works and we take care of her. So Pop brings her to school and when we pick her up and go to either her house or ours, we give her what we call 'Tuesday cookies' and milk. It's a fun little ritual.

This week I used the Dark Chocolate Raspberry variety. It was just the best feeling to not be using the horrible, cancer causing artificial colors that are in M&Ms.


I make a couple without candy for Lucy, and here she is waiting for her cookie.


And of course Hazel thinks they are great!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Today's poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

The Library in the Garret
by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Books, books, books!
I had found the secret of a garret-room
Piled high with cases in my father's name;
Piled high, packed large, - where, creeping in and out
Among the giant fossils of my past,
Like some small nimble mouse between the ribs
Of a mastodon, I nibbled here and there
At this or that box, pulling through the gap,
In heats of terror, haste, victorious joy,
The first book first. And how I felt it beat
Under my pillow, in the morning's dark,
An hour before the sun would let me read!
My books! ...

The poem was in the introduction to this book, which I borrowed from my daughter.


There is a book for each of the 365 days. I think I'm going to really enjoy this. I've already peeked ahead and seen many books I've never read.

The year began with Zadie Smith's White Teeth.


From the introduction:
Think of this as a tasting menu. It is my dearest hope that each taste will send you scurrying to your bookseller or library so you can read (or reread) that book, cover to cover.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Today's video/American Nights by Plain White T's

Here's a fun video by Plain White T's from a couple years ago. I might have to buy the album!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Read Scotland 2017 Challenge

I have these five books about Scotland


on my shelves, and some of them have been there for a long time. Year after year goes by, and I don't read them. So I thought I'd sign up for Peggy Ann's Read Scotland 2017 Challenge.


All the books are set on the Hebrides, and all but the Ann Cleeves are nonfiction. I own one other book set in Scotland, written by the late Iain Banks,


and I just may read this one as well, even though I've read it twice already. I wrote a little bit about it in a book journal before I had a blog.

The book is subtitled In Search Of The Perfect Dram.This book will appeal to - the whisky fan, the fan of author Banks' fiction work, and then me, who is neither one. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was like sitting in the living room (or at a bar!) with him. The writing is rambling, his thoughts seem to be written as he thinks them. What I like especially is his passion- for life, for Scotland, for whisky, for cars, for music, for fun.

It is time I read these books, and this is the perfect way to get myself to do so. I am reading at the 1-5 level called Totie Wee. You may join here at her blog, or on her Goodreads page here

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Saturday Sally/January 7


If you love Inspector Morse, Inspector Lewis, or Endeavour, then I want to direct you to a blog that is all about them. You may find it here. Christopher Sullivan does an amazing job of sharing all one could ever hope to know about these television shows, from reviews of individual episodes including artistic, literary, and musical references, to up to the minute articles about, or communications from, the actors. He also has a youtube channel which you may find here.

Tomorrow night on ITV the fourth series of Endeavour begins. I'll be watching via TunnelBear. It will eventually be on PBS in the US, but I've recently learned from Christopher's blog that we lose about ten minutes of the show over here. After I've seen the shows, I buy the DVDs from PBS, but they say "Full UK-Length Edition."

So that's it for the first Sally of the new year. I wanted to spotlight this one site in case fans of the shows don't know about it. For those on Facebook, he has a page there, too.