Category: Uncategorized

  • Review: Chief of Staff: Notes from Downing Street

    Gavin Barwell, the author and narrator, was a Conservative MP and housing minister who after losing his seat in Theresa May’s snap election, was brought deeper into the government by being appointed her Chief of Staff. My political views aren’t entirely aligned with his – I’ve never voted Conservative and am very unlikely ever to […]

  • Review: Somersett: Benjamin Franklin and the Masterminding of American Independence by Phillip Goodrich

    This is a beast of an audiobook – 14 hours of dense facts, made easier to digest with some well acted dramatisation. The book follows the schemes of Benjamin Franklin, how he manipulated the North and the South, the British, the French, and the Dutch, all because of his dislike of the Penn family and […]

  • Review: The High House by Jessie Greengras

    The High House is another climate change fictionalisation – better than most, but still with its flaws. Better because the writing is gorgeous. Sparsely written bite-sized sections, the prose exudes urgency and desperation. That stylisation worked well, the characters racing towards the impending doom, but it worked only up to a point. With writing that […]

  • Review: Tomorrow by Chris Beckett

    What an excellent novel! Tomorrow follows the life of an unnamed protagonist, through his student days debating left-wing politics, to his isolation in the wilderness to write ‘the book’, to his kidnapping by left-wing guerrillas and his escape, and finally his demise. ‘Following’ isn’t entirely true, as the narrative jumps throughout to different times of […]

  • Review: Walk With Me In Sound by Marc J. Francis

    Thich Nhat Hanh is the father of Buddhism in the West, and I was expecting this audio book to detail his life and his teachings. Unfortunately, it didn’t hit the mark for me. The first section, which I was hoping would explore Thich Nhat Hanh’s teachings, mostly focused on the author’s journey into Buddhism, rather […]

  • Review: Outraged: Why Everyone is Shouting and No One is Talking by Ashley ‘Dotty’ Charles

    These days (a phrase that suggests an oldie harping back to a non-existent golden era!) it seems outrage is being commercialised. Clickbait use targeted headlines to raise the emotions – emotional topics are more likely to be shared, and get more eyes on those all important ads. But this has always been the case – […]

  • Review: Drive by Daniel H. Pink

    Daniel Pink’s Drive is an easy read – for one, the writing is nicely done, but secondly, it’s very sleight on content, which is then repeated, and then summarised. The first two-thirds describe his Motivation 3.0 theory – which is basically you need flow, which is generated by autonomy, mastery and purpose. Then the final […]

  • Review: The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard Flanagan

    Richard Flanagan’s The Narrow Road has been sat on my ‘shelf’ for seven years! I started it once, got half way through, and then got distracted by something shiny. I found it again recently, and as I did enjoy it the first time, started again from the beginning and this time, I made it to […]

  • Review: When America Stopped Being Great: A history of the present by Nick Bryant

    Nick Bryant discusses how America went from having a solid democracy with cross-party collaboration to a dysfunctional nation ruled with the mindset of tribal adolescents. He follows American politics of the past 50 years, praising and admonishing each President on their actions and how they affected the trajectory of American politics. Many of the problems […]

  • Review: How I Built This: The Unexpected Paths to Success from the World’s Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs (Hardcover) by Guy Raz

    I’m a huge fan of Guy’s podcast of the same name, so bought the book as a way of supporting him and saying thanks! The podcast works as the questions in an interview lead on from each other, and you get an understanding of the thought processes. However in the book, Guy splits the conversations […]