Stocking the bookshelves – Feb/March

One of my aims for 2021 was to plan my reading a bit more than I used to so I thought it would be good to share what you can expect from David’s Book Blurg over the next 2 month!

Do any of these take your fancy? What are you reading? Let me know!

Spear Havoc: 1066 – Alternative Histories by C. R. May

The year 1066 is arguably the most famous in English history. Assailed on all sides, King Harold and his doughty army finally fall to a last gasp Norman assault.

It is perhaps the very first of those fights against the odds which have entered the national psyche, of which Agincourt, Rorke’s Drift and Dunkirk are but a few.

But what if Harold Godwinson had prevailed on that blood soaked ridge? Or the invasions of Harald of Norway and William of Normandy had never taken place at all?

Here, bestselling author C.R.May presents twelve short stories, each outlining widely differing ways which could easily — and in some cases should have — produced an entirely different timeline, alternative futures which would have had a dramatic effect on the world in which we live today.

I’ve been wanting to read this one for ages, and I’m glad to say I finished it last week so look out for my review soon!


Gangsta Granny by David Walliams

Our hero Ben is bored beyond belief after he is made to stay at his grandma’s house. She’s the boringest grandma ever: all she wants to do is to play Scrabble, and eat cabbage soup. But there are two things Ben doesn’t know about his grandma.

1) She was once an international jewel thief.

2) All her life, she has been plotting to steal the Crown Jewels, and now she needs Ben’s help…

This year my girls turn 7 and have started to take more of an interest in reading, I want my blog to be a true reflection of my reading so thought it would be fun to record any children’s books to that we read together.


The Forbidden Zone by Tom Trott

Every summer camp has its campfire stories, and that’s all they are: stories. But not here.

On the surface, Boys Club Camp is just like every other British summer camp: strict officers, woodland games, and night-time pranks.

But Tommy remembers that summer in ’97, the year he turned thirteen, when he was the only one plagued with those little niggling questions: Why does the sound of howling cut through the cold night air? Why are the officers so obsessed with the legacy of Boys Club’s long-dead founder? Why aren’t boys allowed in the east woods?

A scream heard in the night led Tommy and his friends on a journey of discovery, to solve a mystery a hundred years in the making: what is the real purpose of Boys Club? The answer could only be found in the dark heart of the woods: the Forbidden Zone.

Now an adult, Tommy needs to understand what they found there. It is his last hope of saving their lives

This one just jumped out at me, as a young lad I spent time at camp myself and never really liked it.. Will this bring back bad memories? Ha


One Night in Beartown by Nick Jones, Si Clark (Illustrator)

When bear-mad schoolgirl Sandy Lane has her beloved teddy bear Berisford confiscated at school, she dreads the thought of going a whole night without his cuddles. Little does she know that a bear-rilliant night awaits her, involving Berisford, a bear statue and many other wonderful friends!

Another one for the kiddos and me. G especially loves bears! Will she love Beartown?


Preserved by Fiona Sherlock

When a local farmer announces on social media that he has discovered a bog body in Ardee, the world’s historians are keen to explore the secrets of the life and grisly death of the victim.

Antique journalist January Quail is fighting to keep her newspaper job and uncovers far more than she bargained for. The victim is actually a recent murder, and January uses her nose for the truth to investigate the County Louth town. From shopkeeper to the publican, everyone is a suspect, but when the Gardai can’t find the killer, can January?

Once she sets down the liqueur glass, January gains the confidence of the lead garda investigator. Within days, the case unravels into a much more dangerous situation with a killer on the loose.

Despite the risk, January is electrified that this newest discovery has come at the perfect time to inject some colour into her flailing career. January relinquishes her old ways to fight for survival, abandoning her antiques column and vintage corsets to solve a cryptic crime that has the experts puzzled. This woman who longs to lives in the past must now fight for her life in the present.

This one had me at bog body..I already need to find out what happened!


Masters of Rome (Rise of Emperors Book 2) by Simon Turney & Gordon Doherty

As competition for the imperial throne intensifies, Constantine and Maxentius realise their childhood friendship cannot last. Each man struggles to control their respective quadrant of empire, battered by currents of politics, religion and personal tragedy, threatened by barbarian forces and enemies within.

With their positions becoming at once stronger and more troubled, the strained threads of their friendship begin to unravel. Unfortunate words and misunderstandings finally sever their ties, leaving them as bitter opponents in the greatest game of all, with the throne of Rome the prize.

It is a matter that can only be settled by outright war…

To say I’m a fan of Turney and Doherty would be an understatement! I can’t wait to get to grips with this installment!


Yearn to Fear by Chas Murrell

Sydney scientist, Marcus Hall, is developing a radical 5G Wi-Fi receiver for CSIRO. With access to secretive Lamarr computer chips – this technology promises billions to repair Australia’s ravaged economy. On a caffeine boosted whim, he inadvertently discovers a therapeutic breakthrough in neuroscience. Or so he thinks…
His seemingly trustworthy lab partner, Henry, is an unlikely Australian spy. His official duty is keeping tabs on the project and their Lamarr chips. But the whole project is now classified top-secret.
Marcus remains blissfully unaware of the many secrets surrounding him, until he witnesses the graphic murder of a colleague. Could this event reveal Henry as a master deceiver and ruthless double agent? Will the scientific discovery be fatal for Marcus, those he loves, and the one he yearns for? Marcus faces a soul tearing dilemma: is the only means of stopping the carnage to weaponise his prototype?
Foreign intelligence agencies realise the top-secret breakthrough is priceless. One particular spy leads the race to seize the invention. A psychological master of the long game, espionage, and extortion, his only rule according to Kung Fu: Win.
Friend and foe alike confront this psychotic mastermind. All will FEAR him, but is their FEAR real? Only the next six minutes will tell…

This one just seemed interesting and fresh, I tend to stick mainly with historical fiction novels and this one seemed quite suitable for a change of pace.


Double Identity by Alison Morton

Deeply in love, a chic Parisian lifestyle before her. Now she’s facing prison for murder.

It’s three days since Mel des Pittones threw in her job as an intelligence analyst with the French special forces to marry financial trader Gérard Rohlbert. But her dream turns to nightmare when she wakes to find him dead in bed beside her.

Her horror deepens when she’s accused of his murder. Met Police detective Jeff McCracken wants to pin Gérard’s death on her. Mel must track down the real killer, even if that means being forced to work with the obnoxious McCracken.

But as she unpicks her fiancé’s past, she discovers his shocking secret life. To get to the truth, she has to go undercover—and finds almost everybody around her is hiding a second self.

Mel can trust nobody. Can she uncover the real killer before they stop her?

I’m a big fan of Alison Morton, this is a move away from her established work so I’m exciting to see if this will live up to the high standards set, I know it will 😊


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