#WWWWednesday – 28th July 2021

WWWWednesdays

Hosted by Taking on a World of Words, this meme is all about the three Ws:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

Why not join in too?  Leave a comment with your link at Taking on a World of Words and then go blog hopping!


Currently reading

The Fair BotanistsThe Fair Botanists by Sara Sheridan (eARC, courtesy of Hodder & Stoughton via NetGalley)

It’s the summer of 1822 and Edinburgh is abuzz with rumours of King George IV’s impending visit. In botanical circles, however, a different kind of excitement has gripped the city. In the newly-installed Botanic Garden, the Agave Americana plant looks set to flower – an event which only occurs once in several decades.

When newly widowed Elizabeth arrives in Edinburgh to live with her late husband’s aunt Clementina, she’s determined to put her unhappy past in London behind her. As she settles into her new home, she becomes fascinated by the beautiful Botanic Garden which border the grand house and offers her services as an artist to record the rare plant’s impending bloom. In this pursuit, she meets Belle Brodie, a vivacious young woman with a passion for botany and the lucrative, dark art of perfume creation. Belle is determined to keep both her real identity and the reason for her interest the Garden secret from her new friend.

But as Elizabeth and Belle are about to discover, secrets don’t last long in this Enlightenment city. And when they are revealed, they can carry the greatest of consequences . . . 

This Lovely CityThis Lovely City by Louise Hare (audiobook)

London, 1950. With the war over and London still rebuilding, jazz musician Lawrie Matthews has answered England’s call for labour. Arriving from Jamaica aboard the Empire Windrush, he’s rented a tiny room in south London and fallen in love with the girl next door.

Playing in Soho’s jazz clubs by night and pacing the streets as a postman by day, Lawrie has poured his heart into his new home ― and it’s alive with possibility. Until one morning, while crossing a misty common, he makes a terrible discovery.

As the local community rallies, fingers of blame point at those who were recently welcomed with open arms. And before long, London’s newest arrivals become the prime suspects in a tragedy that threatens to tear the city apart.


Recently finished

Links from the titles will take you to my review.

With Face Aflame by A E Walnofer

One August Night by Victoria Hislop

Cecily by Annie Garthwaite 

The Late Train to Gipsy Hill by Alan Johnson (eARC, courtesy of Wildfire Books)

Gary Nelson has a routine for the commute to his rather dull job in the city. Each day, he watches as a woman on the train applies her make up in a ritual he now knows by heart. He’s never dared to strike up a conversation . . . but maybe one day. Then one evening, on the late train to Gipsy Hill, the woman invites him to take the empty seat beside her. Fiddling with her mascara, she holds up her mirror and Gary reads the words ‘HELP ME’ scrawled in sticky black letters on the glass.

From that moment, Gary’s life is turned on its head. He finds himself on the run from the Russian mafia, the FSB and even the Metropolitan Police – all because of what this mysterious young woman may have witnessed. In the race to find out the truth, Gary discovers that there is a lot more to her than meets the eye… (Review to follow)


What Cathy (will) Read Next

Three Little TruthsThree Little Truths by Eithne Shortall (review copy, courtesy of Corvus and Readers First)  

One happy street. Three pretty houses. So many lies.

Martha used to be a force of nature: calm, collected, and in charge. But since moving her husband and two daughters to Dublin under sudden and mysterious circumstances, she can’t seem to find her footing.

Robin was the “it” girl in school, destined for success. Now she’s back at her parents’ with her four-year-old son, vowing that her ne’er-do-well ex is out of the picture for good.

Edie has everything she could want, apart from a baby, and the acceptance of her new neighbors. She longs to be one of the girls, and to figure out why her perfect husband seems to be avoiding their perfect future.

Three women looking for a fresh start on idyllic Pine Road. Their friendship will change their lives, and reveal secrets they never imagined.

#TopTenTuesday Books I’d Want With Me While Stranded On a Deserted Island

Top Ten Tuesday new

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.

The rules are simple:

  • Each Tuesday, Jana assigns a new topic. Create your own Top Ten list that fits that topic – putting your unique spin on it if you want.
  • Everyone is welcome to join but please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own Top Ten Tuesday post.
  • Add your name to the Linky widget on that day’s post so that everyone can check out other bloggers’ lists.
  • Or if you don’t have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.

This week’s topic is Books I’d Want With Me While Stranded On a Deserted Island. I thought I’d try to be of practical help and have a bit of fun at the same time…

Learning from others’ experiences:

Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe – the tale of an English sailor marooned on a desert island for nearly three decades
The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss – The sole survivors of a terrible shipwreck, a family are washed ashore in a new world that will test their courage, cleverness, endurance, and faith.
How To Be Alone by Sarah Maitland – “By indulging in the experience of being alone, we can be inspired to find our own rewards and ultimately lead more enriched, fuller lives.”
Message in a Bottle by Nicholas Sparks – Thrown to the waves, and to fate, the bottle could have ended up anywhere.

Useful skills:

Self-Sufficiency: Foraging for Wild Foods by David Squire 
Norwegian Wood: Chopping, Stacking, and Drying Wood the Scandinavian Way by Lars Mytting
The BBQ Book by Jamie Oliver

And in homage to BBC Radio 4’s long-running Desert Island Discs programme, the two books always provided to castaways:

The Bible
The Complete Works of Shakespeare