Reviews & Rants - Blogging about books, authors, and generally 

Reading progress update: I've read 100%.

Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

That was fun, but I'm still no fan of Will's comedies.


And is it possible to read this play and not get an entirely unrelated visual of Don John in your head every time he is mentioned?




No, it is not.

(show spoiler)


Act 4, Scene 1

Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

LoL. Will must have liked the plot twist he came up with for an earlier play

(Romeo and Julia)

(show spoiler)

so very, very much, he decided to recycle it. :D

FRIAR Pause awhile,

And let my counsel sway you in this case.


Your daughter here the princes left for dead,

Let her a while be secretly kept in,

And publish it that she is dead indeed.

Maintain a mourning ostentation,

And on your family's old monument

Hang mournful epitaphs, and do all rites

That appertain unto a burial.

(show spoiler)



Now, that is a "cunning plan" that has never gone wrong before.

Act 3, Scene 3

Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

[Enter Dogberry and his compartner Verges, with the Watch]

DOGBERRY Are you good men and true?


I dont know whether this was meant to make me laugh, but it did. 


Not only do I think "Dogberry" is a fantastic name (worthy of Pratchett), but the way that the assessment of a person by the Watch is based on such a simple direct question cracked me up. 

Act 2, Scene 3

Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

Still catching up...


It's intriguing that Benedick's incantation here resembles a curse:

"[...]He was wont to speak plain and to the purpose, like an honest man and a soldier, and now is he turned orthography. His words are a very fantastical banquet, just so many strange dishes. May I be so converted, and see with these eyes? I cannot tell. I think not. I will not be sworn but love may transform me to an oyster, but I'll take my oath on it, till he have made an oyster of me he shall never make me such a fool. One woman is fair, yet I am well. Another is wise, yet I am well. Another virtuous, yet I am well. But till all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace. Rich she shall be, that's certain. Wise, or I'll none. Virtuous, or I'll never cheapen her. Fair, or I'll never look on her. Mild, or come not near me. Noble, or not I for an angel. Of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God. Ha! The Prince and Monsieur Love. I will hide me in the arbour."

Act 1, Scene 1

Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

BENEDICK Then is courtesy a turncoat. But it is certain I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted. And I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart, for truly I love none.

BEATRICE A dear happiness to women. They would else have been troubled with a pernicious suitor. I thank God and my cold blood I am of your humour for that. I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me.

BENEDICK God keep your ladyship still in that mind. So some gentleman or other shall scape a predestinate scratched face.

BEATRICE Scratching could not make it worse an 'twere such a face as yours were.

Next up in the Will's World Project...

The Complete Works (Oxford Shakespeare) - William Shakespeare, John Jowett, Gary Taylor Much Ado About Nothing - William Shakespeare

An impromptu buddy read with Lillelara of Much Ado About Nothing.  :)


I don't have the Arkangel version of the audio production for this one, even tho they are my go-to favourites. My version of Much Ado has Rex Harrison in it.  



Reading progress update: I've read 29%.

No Tears for Hilda: Max Easterbrook Investigates - Andrew Garve

Erm, ... I can already tell that this book is not for me, and unless Garve turns around everything that annoys me about this book so far by the end of No Tears for Hilda, I'm sure that Garve will be banned from my TBR, too. 


I'm going to take a break from this right now. I just have very little patience at the moment for cliche, misogyny, and pop psychology. 

Reading progress update: I've read 17%.

No Tears for Hilda: Max Easterbrook Investigates - Andrew Garve

How could I possibly resist @Tigus' recommendation that this book might "appeal to fans of...wait for it...Farjeon, or even Below the Clock"?


I just had to have a look. 


So far, this is more on the noir side and doesn't have the nuanced conversations, characters, and situations of Farjeon or J.V. Turner (Below the Clock), but I am intrigued nonetheless.

Reading progress update: I've read 100%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

Ok, I had a hunch about some of the developments, but I'm not sure what to make of the last 20% of the book.

I didn't enjoy them anywhere near as much as the first 80%.

Reading progress update: I've read 70%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

Yeah, so this happened: I set out to make dinner but couldn't quite set the book aside. At all. 

So, what was going to be potato salad is now ... mash, because, no the potatoes definitely overcooked.


Let that be a lesson, fellow readers: Do not read AND cook anything that depends on timing or doesn't go "ping" and switch off by itself.


Anyway,...I now have wine. (Check out the label! I could not resist. It's tasty, too.)


As for the book, I LOVE IT!!


I was so hooked on Hilary's adventure that all I could think was "This is what The 39 Steps should have been like!"


Reading progress update: I've read 48%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

And we're off...

Miss Silver dropped her knitting in her lap and folded her hands upon it.    

‘Let us understand one another, Captain Cunningham,’ she said in her quiet voice. ‘If you employ me, you will be employing me to discover facts. If I discover anything about these people, you will have the benefit of my discovery. It may be what you are expecting, or it may not. People are not always pleased to know the truth.’ Miss Silver nodded her head in a gentle depreciating manner. ‘You’ve no idea how often that happens. Very few people want to know the truth. They wish to be confirmed in their own opinions, which is a very different thing – very different indeed. I cannot promise that what I discover will confirm you in your present opinion.’ She gave a slight hesitating cough and began to knit again. ‘I have always had my own views about the Everton Case.’

I'm going to take a break to make dinner. I predict that it would be unwise to continue on an empty stomach.

Reading progress update: I've read 45%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

How bitter when your only bun

Is not at all a recent one.


I really enjoyed the scene that preceded this little masterpiece. 


I still don't like Henry.

Reading progress update: I've read 25%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

"Hilary, was, of course, the disturbing factor. Hilary had been immensely keen about their running the antique business together. He had practically made up his mind then. But if Hilary was off, he felt like being off too – off to the ends of the earth as far as possible from Hilary Carew, and from his mother who never saw him without telling him what an escape he had had. With inward rage Henry was aware that he had not escaped, and that he had no desire to escape. Hilary had behaved atrociously – he used her own words – but he hadn’t the slightest intention of letting her get away with it. He was leaving her alone because he was angry, and because she deserved to be left alone. When she had been punished sufficiently and was properly humble and penitent he meant to forgive her. At least that is what it all looked like in the daytime, but at night it didn’t seem quite so easy. Suppose Hilary wouldn’t make it up. Suppose she had got really entangled with that swine Basil Montague. Suppose – suppose – suppose he had lost her  . . ."

And they say romance is dead... ;D


Also, I'm glad Henry hasn't featured much so far.

Reading progress update: I've read 3%.

The Case Is Closed - Patricia Wentworth

Yeah, I got side-tracked and didn't get to start this when I meant to. Also, I had to read the first parts twice as I had difficulty getting into the story. 


We've now met Miss Silver. She's not been introduced by name, but I recognise her, suppressing her cough already.

In these times, this reads like a horror novel:

"There had been two other people in the carriage when she got in. They were occupying the inside corner seats, and they had made no more impression on her than if they had been two suitcases. Now, as she turned round, she saw that one of them, a man, had pushed back the sliding door and was going out into the corridor. He passed along it and out of sight, and almost immediately the woman who had been sitting opposite him moved in her seat and leaned a little forward, looking hard at Hilary. She was an elderly woman, and Hilary thought she looked very ill. She had on a black felt hat and a grey coat with a black fur collar – the neat inconspicuous clothes of a respectable woman who has stopped bothering about her appearance, but is tidy from habit and training. Under the dark brim her hair, face, and eyes were of a uniform greyish tint.    

Hilary said, ‘I’ve got into the wrong train. It sounds awfully stupid, but if you could tell me where we’re going – I don’t even know that.’    

A curious little catch came up in the woman’s throat."

Also, as an update on the Miss Silver drinking game: I am not counting a catch in her throat as a cough, so no wine, yet. ;)

The "Let´s forget the C-word buddy read" - Round 2

I'm going in... but I also wanted brunch.


Will's World - The Sonnets

The Complete Works (Oxford Shakespeare) - William Shakespeare, John Jowett, Gary Taylor

I'm moving up the sonnets im Will's World reading project because at the moment Patrick Stewart is reading #ASonnetADay on Facebook. 


I was hesitant about reading the sonnets as Elizabethan poetry is not very high up on my list of comfort reads, but how can I resist Sir Patrick reading them to me?

I  just can't. 

Currently reading

The Complete English Poems by John Donne
Progress: 55/569pages
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Der Weltverbesserer: Sämtliche Erzählungen 1910-18 by Volker Michels, Hermann Hesse
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